Remove tracked ignorned files from repo but not locally

I keep running into a scenario where someone on our team pushes an initial commit without first adding a .gitignore to their project. This results in a bunch of files ending up in the repo that we don’t want tracked.

git ls-files -i --exclude-from=.gitignore
gives me a list of files that are ignored by .gitignore

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  • and

    git rm --cached <file>
    lets me remove files one at a time from the repo, but keeps them in my working directory (which I want)

    Is there a way I can pipe the file list from ls-files to rm --cached (or some other method altogether that will allow me to remove the tracked, ignored files from my repo)?

    One of our team members wrote a shell script that uses regex to do it, but I’m looking for a command-line only solution (if one exists).

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  • One Solution collect form web for “Remove tracked ignorned files from repo but not locally”

    You can try:

    git rm --cached $(git ls-files -i --exclude-from=.gitignore)

    (Following the same idea than what works for deleted files in
    “git remove files which have been deleted”, or in “git: how to add/commit removals made via vanilla rm?”, or “Removing multiple files from a Git repo that have already been deleted from disk”).

    Or: a simple pipe could work too:

    git ls-files -i --exclude-from=.gitignore | xargs -0 git rm --cached
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