How do I make Git forget about a file that was tracked, but is now in .gitignore?


I put a file that was previously being tracked by Git onto the .gitignore list. However, the file still shows up in git status after it is edited. How do I force Git to completely forget the file?


.gitignore will prevent untracked files from being added (without an add -f) to the set of files tracked by Git. However, Git will continue to track any files that are already being tracked.

To stop tracking a file, we must remove it from the index:

git rm --cached <file>

To remove a folder and all files in the folder recursively:

git rm -r --cached <folder>

The removal of the file from the head revision will happen on the next commit.

WARNING: While this will not remove the physical file from your local machine, it will remove the files from other developers' machines on their next git pull.

Visualizing branch topology in Git

How to git reset --hard a subdirectory