Merge branches

Merge branches

Incorporate changes from one branch into another.

In software development, teams often work on new features or bug fixes in isolated branches. Once the work is complete and tested, it's important to integrate these changes back into the main codebase. Merging facilitates this integration without losing the history of changes.


The following is the process to execute a merge command in Y42:

Merge branches

Best Practices for Merging

  • Keep your branch up-to-date with the main branch.

Regularly pull changes from the main branch into your working branch to ensure a simpler merge process and fewer conflicts.

  • Commit often.

This makes it easier to understand what changes led to a bug or conflict.

  • Write meaningful commit messages.

This helps others understand what changes were made and why. More on writing meaningful commit messages in this section.

Understanding merge conflicts

A merge conflict occurs when Git cannot automatically resolve differences between two branches during a merge. This often happens when changes are made to the same part of a file in both branches. Git will mark the file as "unmerged" and you'll need to resolve the conflict manually.

Managing merge conflicts

When a merge conflict occurs, Git will output a message indicating that a conflict has occurred, and the affected files will be marked. You can open these files to manually resolve the conflicts.

Look for the conflict markers (<<<<<<<, =======, and >>>>>>>), which will indicate the differing segments of code.


<<<<<< HEAD
CREATE TABLE dim_products AS SELECT * FROM products;
CREATE TABLE dim_products AS SELECT * FROM staging.products;
>>>>>> conflicting-branch

All the lines between the <<<<<< HEAD and ======= exist in the current branch which the HEAD ref is pointing to.

All the lines betweeen ======= and >>>>>> conflicting-branch is content in the new branch that is trying to merge.

Once you've decided how to resolve each conflict, you can save the file, and commit it to complete the merge.

Resolve merge conflicts


Merging is an essential aspect of version control that allows simultaneous and isolated work on a shared codebase. Understanding and managing merge conflicts is a necessary skill in collaborative coding environments. Employing best practices while merging helps maintain a clean, understandable commit history and reduces the complexity of merging operations.


When should I merge branches?
What is a merge conflict?
How do I resolve a merge conflict?