path: root/Documentation
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authorRichard Hansen <>2013-09-04 19:04:34 (GMT)
committerJunio C Hamano <>2013-09-04 22:04:01 (GMT)
commit4b6acde54364d9350779eb470a1677aa78ed5bf4 (patch)
treeb34fbac0239e4a8ea4fe807e9e3bab7bb46c622c /Documentation
parentabdb54a1d26c79692468aaf2c651e85c2a917c15 (diff)
glossary: fix and clarify the definition of 'ref'
Signed-off-by: Richard Hansen <> Signed-off-by: Junio C Hamano <>
Diffstat (limited to 'Documentation')
1 files changed, 14 insertions, 4 deletions
diff --git a/Documentation/glossary-content.txt b/Documentation/glossary-content.txt
index 3466ce9..7ad13e1 100644
--- a/Documentation/glossary-content.txt
+++ b/Documentation/glossary-content.txt
@@ -395,10 +395,20 @@ should not be combined with other pathspec.
to the result.
- A 40-byte hex representation of a <<def_SHA1,SHA-1>> or a name that
- denotes a particular <<def_object,object>>. They may be stored in
- a file under `$GIT_DIR/refs/` directory, or
- in the `$GIT_DIR/packed-refs` file.
+ A name that begins with `refs/` (e.g. `refs/heads/master`)
+ that points to an <<def_object_name,object name>> or another
+ ref (the latter is called a <<def_symref,symbolic ref>>).
+ For convenience, a ref can sometimes be abbreviated when used
+ as an argument to a Git command; see linkgit:gitrevisions[7]
+ for details.
+ Refs are stored in the <<def_repository,repository>>.
+The ref namespace is hierarchical.
+Different subhierarchies are used for different purposes (e.g. the
+`refs/heads/` hierarchy is used to represent local branches).
+There are a few special-purpose refs that do not begin with `refs/`.
+The most notable example is `HEAD`.
A reflog shows the local "history" of a ref. In other words,