Conan Troutman · Sep 16, 2012 at 08:00 am

Comprehensive Guide to Using GitHub

If you’re an experienced developer, it’s probably safe to say that you already know your way around GitHub or a similar site fairly well.  However for those of you just beginning to dip your toes into the waters of mobile development, such sites may seem a little overwhelming at first glance. Fear not, as XDA Forum Moderator eagleeyetom has put together a fantastically comprehensive guide that will have you forking, pushing, and cherry picking in no time at all.

In case you aren’t already aware, GitHub is essentially an online source code repository for projects using the Git revision control system. Sure there are numerous other features on offer, but it’s this function that is at the very core of the site. This therefore allows developers to make their code easily accessible for others, and aids collaboration tremendously. And collaboration, after all, is what XDA-Developers is all about.

Many of the projects you will find on XDA host their source code on GitHub. Custom kernels are a perfect example, as the Linux kernel is licensed under the GPL, and thus you are legally obliged to share your source code if you make any changes and release your work. More on this can be found here.

Eagleeyetom’s guide covers the basics of using GitHub such as creating your account and SSH key, forking and pushing, and even more advanced tasks such as merging and cherry picking. Everything is very clearly explained and displayed in screenshots to keep you on track.

I highly recommend this guide to any budding developers out there who haven’t yet found their feet with GitHub. Head on over to the tutorial thread, and let the learning commence. My only criticism is that unfortunately the tutorial isn’t able to offer any explanation of why the GitHub logo appears to be some kind of octopus/cat hybrid, perhaps some things are better left to the imagination.


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