Commit Messages

I’ve been using git for most of this year. It’s been a really excellent ride, and the things it enables are wonderful. But one of the things I’ve found most handy is a convention.

The commit message is treated like an email: one line of subject and then a few paragraphs of explanation. Keep the subject line short so you don’t have scroll bars when they’re displayed.

This works really well for scanning the history of a project — you can get at at a glance overview of what’s changed and then click on a single commit for more detail. I’ve tried to carry this over to subversion projects as well.