Removing Files Safely From Git

Removing Files Safely From Git

Git is a version control system that programmers use to collaborate on software development projects to develop and make changes to the source code. It can also be used to keep track of modifications and save them to a specific folder. Gitwas created to protect data integrity and work speed by distributing work over multiple branches.

Risks Of Removing Files From Git

Gitmight not be the best place to store secrets. Git is used by web developers all around the world to do their tasks. They use the Git platform to simultaneously work on many areas of a single software. The Git content that was removed may not have been completely removed and may still be visible on the website. This is important because hackers can use this information to break into your system and steal your files.

Git Guardian

GitGuardian assists businesses in detecting secrets on GitHub and internal repositories. API keys and other credentials can be used as secrets. Every company with an online presence acquires data on the internet and keeping it secure is a delicate affair. As a result, GitGuardian identifies spreading secrets and stops hackers from publishing them in dangerous areas.

How to remove files safely Using GitGuardian?

There are many possible scenarios in which you can perform your Git remove file. So, let’s discuss them one by one and find a way out of the problem.

Not Pushed Up Your Work

If you have any uncommitted work, store it using a git stash. This places your work in a temporary “stash” so we may interact with the git repository without losing anything you haven’t yet committed. When we’re finished cleaning up, you may restore your work with git stash pop.

Pushed Up Your Work

This is the part where things start to get complicated. Suppose you are working alone on that assignment, but if you are in a team, you have to choose your path in a careful way. 

Also Read: 3 Quick & Easy Ways to Manage Computer Files

Determine who is affected by this. If your secret appears only in the sub-branch on which you are working, you need to collaborate with the one who always works off that branch, but if you see your secret moving back in the git history. 

It would be best if you informed everyone working on that repository. Know that a secret has been discovered that must be removed from everyone’s git history. The erased file may wind up re-inserting the unknown back into the public repository when they submit their work. As a result, for the excision to be adequate, everyone involved must be on the same page. This implies that everyone must stop what they are doing, close pending PRs, and prioritise ongoing work. Here is how to counter that problem:

  • Delete your existing clone completely.
  • Using ‘git clone [repository URL]’ will create a new clone.
  • Using ‘cd [project name]’ will take you to the project directory.
  • Using ‘git pull —all —tags’ will get the complete repository history.

Final thoughts

GitGuardian is an automatic secret detection system that connects your git repositories to search for secrets in your code. GitGuardian first cleans your history before integrating with your continuous integration workflow to scan any incremental changes as they come and inform you before you have to do complex surgery.


IITSWEB is the Chief Business Development Officer at IITSWEB, a Magento design and development company headquartered in Redwood City, California. He is a Member of the Magento Association and an Adobe Sales Accredited Magento Commerce professional. Jan is responsible for developing and leading the sales and digital marketing strategies of the company. He is passionate about ecommerce and Magento in particular — throughout the years his articles have been featured on Retail Dive, Hacker Noon, Chief Marketer, Mobile Marketer, TMCnet, and many others.

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