What is the fastest way to unstage parts of a new file in git?

When I want to split up a new file into several commits I can git add -N <file> and then interactively stage lines using git gui. When I make a mistake while staging, however, git gui won’t let me unstage individual lines because it is a new file (which seems like a bug to me). Of course I can always unstage the whole file and start over again, but I am wondering whether there is a more efficient way to do so.

I am using git 1.7.5.

To clarify, this question is specific to new aka untracked files!

  • How to get changes done by me one commit back?
  • How to undo a “git add” keeping the previously staged version? (Does the index have history?)
  • git reset vs git reset HEAD
  • How do I revert a pushed commit back to being unstaged?
  • 3 Solutions collect form web for “What is the fastest way to unstage parts of a new file in git?”

    From the command line type:

    git reset -p

    This will let you selectivelty unstage hunks from the index using the standard command-line interface for managing hunks.. This is the opposite of git add -p.


    OK, it would appear that you cannot selectively stage different hunks when the file is new. Given that git-gui and the standard git hunk editor both do not allow this, it probably isn’t possible.

    Using fugitive you can easily do so. Just invoke the :Gdiff command and then stage and unstage whatever you want. You can even edit the index file directly. Of course, this solution requires you to be fairly comfortable with vim and vimdiff

    I just ran into the same issue: I had just committed a new file, and I wanted to unstage some of the lines in that file and have those as a separate commit. The solution I worked out was:

    • Start on the commit that adds the new file
    • Remove the lines you wanted to unstage in the source file, stage those changes and git commit -m 'REVERTME'
    • Create a new commit that reverts that latest commit: git revert HEAD
    • Use git rebase -i to fixup the first new commit, and optionally reword the revert commit.
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