Lint Unittest DCO Gem Version

Welcome to SugarJar - a git/github helper. It leverages the amazing GitHub cli, hub, so you'll need that installed.

SugarJar is inspired by arcanist, and its replacement at Facebook, JellyFish. Many of the features they provide for the Phabricator workflow this aims to bring to the GitHub workflow.

In particular there are a lot of helpers for using a squash-merge workflow that is poorly handled by the standard toolsets.

If you miss Mondrian or Phabricator - this is the tool for you!

If you don't, there's a ton of useful stuff for everyone!

Auto cleanup squash-merged branches

It is common for a PR to go back and forth with a variety of nits, lint fixes, typos, etc. that can muddy history. So many projects will "squash and merge" when they accept a pull request. However, that means git branch -d <branch> doesn't work. Git will tell you the branch isn't fully merged. You can, of course git branch -D <branch>, but that does no safety checks at all, it forces the deletion.

Enter sj bclean - it determines if the contents of your branch has been merge and safely deletes if so.

sj bclean

Will delete a branch, if it has been merged, even if it was squash-merged.

You can pass it a branch if you'd like (it defaults to the branch you're on): sj bclean <branch>.

But it gets better! You can use sj bcleanall to remove all branches that have been merged:

$ git branch
* argparse
$ git bcleanall
Skipping branch argparse - there are unmerged commits
Reaped branch feature
Reaped branch hubhost

Smarter clones and remotes

There's a pattern to every new repo we want to contribute to. First we fork, then we clone the fork, then we add a remote of the upstream repo. It's monotonous. SugarJar does this for you:

sj smartclone jaymzh/sugarjar

(also sj sclone)

This will:

  • Make a fork of the repo, if you don't already have one
  • Clone your fork
  • Add the original as an 'upstream' remote

Note that it takes hubs short-names for repos. No need to specify a full URL, just a $org/$repo.

Like git clone, sj sclone will accept an additional argument as the destination directory to clone to. It will also pass any other unknown options to git clone under the hood.

Work with stacked branches more easily

It's important to break changes into reviewable chunks, but working with stacked branches can be confusing. Enter binfo - it gives you a view of your current branch all the way up to master. In this example imagine we have a branch structure like:

                      +- test2.1
master --- test --- test2 --- test3

This is what binfo on test3 looks like:

$ sj binfo
* e451865 (HEAD -> test3) test3
* e545b41 (test2) test2
* c808eae (test1) test1
o 44cf9e2 (origin/master, origin/HEAD, master) Lint/gemspec cleanups

while binfo on test2.1 looks like:

$ sj binfo
* 36d0136 (HEAD -> test2.1) test2.1
* e545b41 (test2) test2
* c808eae (test1) test1
o 44cf9e2 (origin/master, origin/HEAD, master) Lint/gemspec cleanups

Have a better lint/unittest experience!

Ever made a PR, only to find out later that it failed tests because of some small lint issue? Not anymore! SJ can be configured to run things before pushing. For example,in the SugarJar repo, we have it run Rubocop (ruby lint) and Markdownlint "on_push". If those fail, it lets you know and doesn't push.

You can configure SugarJar to tell it how to run both lints and unittests for a given repo and if one or both should be run prior to pushing.

The details on the config file format is below, but we provide three commands:

git lint

Run all linters.

git unit

Run all unittests.

git smartpush # or spush

Run configured push-time actions (nothing, lint, unit, both), and do not push if any of them fail.

Better push defaults

In addition to running pre-push tests for you smartpush also picks smart defaults for push. So if you sj spush with no arguments, it uses the origin remote and the same branch name you're on as the remote branch.

Cleaning up your own history

Perhaps you contribute to a project that prefers to use merge commits, so you like to clean up your own history. This is often difficult to get right - a combination of rebases, amends and force pushes. We provide two commands here to help.

The first is pretty straight forward and is basically just an alias: sj amend. It will amend whatever you want to the most recent commit (just an alias for git commit --amend). It has a partner qamend (or amendq if you prefer) that will do so without prompting to update your commit message.

So now you've rebased or amended, pushing becomes challenging. You can git push --force, but everyone knows that's incredibly dangerous. Is there a better way? There is! Git provides git push --force-with-lease - it checks to make sure you're up-to-date with the remote before forcing the push. But man that command is a mouthful! Enter sj fpush. It has all the smarts of sj smartpush (runs configured pre-push actions), but adds --force-with-lease to the command!

Better feature branches

When you want to start a new feature, you want to start developing against latest. That's why sj feature defaults to creating a branch against what we call "most master". That is, upstream/master if it exists, otherwise origin/master if that exists, otherwise master. You can pass in an additional argument to base it off of something else.

$ git branch
* test2.1
$ sj feature test-branch
Created feature branch test-branch based on origin/master
$ sj feature dependent-feature test-branch
Created feature branch dependent-feature based on test-branch


Smartlog will show you a tree diagram of your branches! Simply run sj smartlog or sj sl for short.

smartlog screenshot

And more!

See sj help for more commands!

Using SugarJar as a git wrapper

SugarJar, by default, will pass any command it doesn't know straight to hub (which passes commands it doesn't know to git). As such you can alias it to git and just have a super-git.

$ alias git=sj
$ git config -l | grep color
color.branch.current=yellow reverse
$ git br
* dependent-feature 44cf9e2 Lint/gemspec cleanups
  master            44cf9e2 Lint/gemspec cleanups
  test-branch       44cf9e2 Lint/gemspec cleanups
  test1             c808eae [ahead 1] test1
  test2             e545b41 test2
  test2.1           c1831b3 test2.1
  test3             e451865 test3

It's for this reason that SugarJar doesn't have conflicting command names. You can turn off fallthru by setting fallthru: false in your config.

The only command we "override" is version, in which case we not only print our version, but also call hub version which prints its version and calls git version too!


Sugarjar will read in both a system-level config file (/etc/sugarjar/config.yaml) and a user-level config file ~/.config/sugarjar/config.yaml, if they exist. Anything in the user config will override the system config, and command-line options override both. The yaml file is a straight key-value pair of options without their '--'. For example:

debug: true
github-user: jaymzh

In addition, the environment variable SUGARJAR_DEBUG can be defined to set debug on. This is primarily used as a way to turn debug on earlier in order to troubleshoot configuration parsing.

Repository Configuration

Sugarjar looks for a .sugarjar.yaml in the root of the repository to tell it how to handle repo-specific things. Currently there options are:

  • lint - A list of scripts to run on sj lint. These should be linters like rubocop or pyflake.
  • unit - A list of scripts to run on sj unit. These should be unittest runners like rspec or pyunit.
  • on_push - A list of types (lint, unit) of checks to run before pushing. It is highly recommended this is only lint. The goal here is to allow for the user to get quick stylistic feedback before pushing their branch to avoid the push-fix-push-fix loop.
  • commit_template - A path to a commit template to set in the commit.template git config for this repo. Should be either a fully-qualified path, or a path relative to the repo root.

Example configuration:

  - scripts/lint
  - scripts/unit
  - lint
commit_template: .commit-template.txt

Commit Templates

While GitHub provides a way to specify a pull-request template by putting the right file into a repo, there is no way to tell git to automatically pick up a commit template by dropping a file in the repo. Users must do something like: git config commit.template <file>. Making each developer do this is error prone, so this setting will automatically set this up for each developer.

Enterprise GitHub

Like hub, SugarJar supports GitHub Enterprise. In fact, we provide extra features just for it.

We recommend the global or user config specify the github_host. However, most users will also have a few repos from upstream so always specifying a github_host is sub-optimal.

So, when you overwrite the github_host on the command line, we go ahead and set the git config in that single repo so that it'll "just work" from there on out.

In other words, assuming your global SJ config has github_host:, and the you clone sugarjar with:

sj clone jaymzh/sugarjar --github-host

We will add the to the sugarjar clone so that future hub or sj commands work without needing to specify..


Why the name SugarJar?

It's mostly a backranym. Like jellyfish, I wanted two letters that were on home row on different sides of the keyboard to make it easy to type. I looked at the possible options that where there and not taken and tried to find one I could make an appropriate name out of. Since this utility adds lots of sugar to git and github, it seemed appropriate.

Why did you use hub instead of the newer gh CLI?

gh is still new and not yet as feature rich as hub. Also I wanted SugarJar to be able to be a git wrapper, and so wrapping hub allows us to do that but wrapping gh does not.