stg [--version | --help]
stg [--help <command> | <command> --help]
stg <command> [COMMAND OPTIONS] [ARGS]


StGit (Stacked Git) is an application that provides a convenient way to maintain a patch stack on top of a Git branch:

  • The topmost (most recent) commits of a branch are given names. Such a named commit is called a patch.

  • After making changes to the worktree, you can incorporate the changes into an existing patch; this is called refreshing. You may refresh any patch, not just the topmost one.

  • You can pop a patch: temporarily putting it aside, so that the patch below it becomes the topmost patch. Later you may push it onto the stack again. Pushing and popping can be used to reorder patches.

  • You can easily rebase your patch stack on top of any other Git commit. (The base of a patch stack is the most recent Git commit that is not an StGit patch.) For example, if you started making patches on top of someone else’s branch, and that person publishes an updated branch, you can take all your patches and apply them on top of the updated branch.

  • As you would expect, changing what is below a patch can cause that patch to no longer apply cleanly — this can occur when you reorder patches, rebase patches, or refresh a non-topmost patch. StGit uses Git’s rename-aware three-way merge capability to automatically fix up what it can; if it still fails, it lets you manually resolve the conflict just like you would resolve a merge conflict in Git.

  • The patch stack is just some extra metadata attached to regular Git commits, so you can continue to use most Git tools along with StGit.

Typical uses

Tracking branch

Tracking changes from a remote branch, while maintaining local modifications against that branch, possibly with the intent of sending some patches upstream. You can modify your patch stack as much as you want, and when your patches are finally accepted upstream, the permanent recorded Git history will contain just the final sequence of patches, and not the messy sequence of edits that produced them.

Commands of interest in this workflow are e.g. rebase and mail.

Development branch

Even if you have no "upstream" to send patches to, you can use StGit as a convenient way to modify the recent history of a Git branch. For example, instead of first committing change A, then change B, and then A2 to fix A because it wasn’t quite right, you could incorporate the fix directly into A. This way of working results in a much more readable Git history than if you had immortalized every misstep you made on your way to the right solution.

Commands of interest in this workflow are e.g. uncommit, which can be used to move the patch stack base downwards — i.e., turn Git commits into StGit patches after the fact — and commit, its inverse.

For more information, see the tutorial.

Specifying patches

Many StGit commands take references to StGit patches as arguments. Patches in the stack are identified with short names, each of which must be unique in the stack.

Patches in the current branch are simply referred to by their name. Some commands allow you to specify a patch in another branch of the repository; this is done by prefixing the patch name with the branch name and a colon (e.g. otherbranch:thatpatch).

Specifying commits

Some StGit commands take Git commits as arguments. StGit accepts all commit expressions that Git does; and in addition, a patch name (optionally prefixed by a branch name and a colon) is allowed in this context. The usual Git modifiers ^ and ~ are also allowed; e.g., abranch:apatch~2 is the grandparent of the commit that is the patch apatch on branch abranch.

Instead of a patch name, you can say {base} to refer to the stack base (the commit just below the bottommost patch); so, abranch:{base} is the base of the stack in branch abranch.

If you need to pass a given StGit reference to a Git command, stg id will convert it to a Git commit id for you.


The following generic option flags are available. Additional options are available for (and documented with) the different subcommands.


Prints the StGit version, as well as version of other components used, such as Git and Python.


Prints the synopsis and a list of all subcommands. If an StGit subcommand is given, prints the synposis for that subcommand.


We divide StGit commands in thematic groups, according to the primary type of object they create or change.

Repository commands

stg clone

Make a local clone of a remote repository

stg id

Print the git hash value of a StGit reference

Stack (branch) commands

stg branch

Branch operations: switch, list, create, rename, delete, …

stg clean

Delete the empty patches in the series

stg commit

Permanently store the applied patches into the stack base

stg float

Push patches to the top, even if applied

stg goto

Push or pop patches to the given one

stg hide

Hide a patch in the series

stg init

Initialise the current branch for use with StGIT

stg log

Display the patch changelog

stg next

Print the name of the next patch

stg patches

Show the applied patches modifying a file

stg pop

Pop one or more patches from the stack

stg prev

Print the name of the previous patch

stg publish

Push the stack changes to a merge-friendly branch

stg pull

Pull changes from a remote repository

stg push

Push one or more patches onto the stack

stg rebase

Move the stack base to another point in history

stg redo

Undo the last undo operation

stg repair

Fix StGit metadata if branch was modified with git commands

stg reset

Reset the patch stack to an earlier state

stg series

Print the patch series

stg sink

Send patches deeper down the stack

stg squash

Squash two or more patches into one

stg top

Print the name of the top patch

stg uncommit

Turn regular git commits into StGit patches

stg undo

Undo the last operation

stg unhide

Unhide a hidden patch

Patch commands

stg delete

Delete patches

stg edit

Edit a patch description or diff

stg export

Export patches to a directory

stg files

Show the files modified by a patch (or the current patch)

stg fold

Integrate a GNU diff patch into the current patch

stg import

Import a GNU diff file as a new patch

stg mail

Send a patch or series of patches by e-mail

stg new

Create a new, empty patch

stg pick

Import a patch from a different branch or a commit object

stg refresh

Generate a new commit for the current patch

stg rename

Rename a patch

stg show

Show the commit corresponding to a patch

stg sync

Synchronise patches with a branch or a series

Index/worktree commands

stg diff

Show the tree diff


StGit uses the same configuration mechanism as Git. See git(7) for more details.


A number of StGit commands make use of template files to provide useful default texts to be edited by the user. These <name>.tmpl template files are searched in the following directories:

  1. $GITDIR/ (in practice, the .git/ directory in your repository)

  2. $HOME/.stgit/templates/

  3. /usr/share/stgit/templates/