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

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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?


Solution

.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.

Source: StackOverflow.com

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