Renaming a branch

You can change the name of a branch in a repository.

People with write permissions to a repository can rename a branch in the repository. People with admin permissions can rename the default branch.

About renaming branches

You can rename a branch in a repository on GitHub. For more information about branches, see "About branches."

When you rename a branch on GitHub, any URLs that contain the old branch name are automatically redirected to the equivalent URL for the renamed branch. Branch protection policies are also updated, as well as the base branch for open pull requests (including those for forks) and draft releases. After the rename is complete, GitHub provides instructions on the repository's home page directing contributors to update their local Git environments.

Although file URLs are automatically redirected, raw file URLs are not redirected. Also, GitHub does not perform any redirects if users perform a git pull for the previous branch name.

GitHub Actions workflows do not follow renames, so if your repository publishes an action, anyone using that action with @{old-branch-name} will break. You should consider adding a new branch with the original content plus an additional commit reporting that the branch name is deprecated and suggesting that users migrate to the new branch name.

Renaming a branch

  1. Navigiere in GitHub zur Hauptseite des Repository.
  2. Klicke oberhalb der Liste der Dateien auf NUMBER-Branches. Branches-Link auf der Übersichtsseite
  3. In the list of branches, to the right of the branch you want to rename, click . Pencil icon to the right of branch you want to rename
  4. Type a new name for the branch. Text field for typing new branch name
  5. Review the information about local environments, then click Rename branch. Local environment information and "Rename branch" button

Updating a local clone after a branch name changes

After you rename a branch in a repository on GitHub, any collaborator with a local clone of the repository will need to update the clone.

From the local clone of the repository on a computer, run the following commands to update the name of the default branch.

$ git branch -m OLD-BRANCH-NAME NEW-BRANCH-NAME
$ git fetch origin
$ git branch -u origin/NEW-BRANCH-NAME NEW-BRANCH-NAME
$ git remote set-head origin -a

Optionally, run the following command to remove tracking references to the old branch name.

$ git remote prune origin

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