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Continuous Integration, Delivery, and Deployment by Sander Rossel

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The staging area

Once you commit your changes, they go out of the working directory and into your history. There is a stage between the two though, called the staging area. Whenever you change, add, or delete a file in your working directory and then check out the status using git status, it will tell you whether you have new (untracked) files, changes that are not staged for commit, or changes to be committed:

From that explanation, it becomes clear that whatever is not staged will not be committed. This allows you to change multiple files, but only commit a few of them. It is even possible to stage only parts of files. It can come in handy ...

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