Git: failed to push some refs

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git github thesis

I’m keeping my PhD thesis in a private repository on GitHub, because you can never have enough copies.

A couple of times when I’ve tried to push, after some fairly major rejigging, I’ve had the error:

To ! [rejected] master -> master (non-fast forward) error: failed to push some refs to ‘’

Which is obviously quite annoying. Ed’s Elite blog suggests that when this happens you should run git pull, manually merge, and then try the push again. ARGH!

A quick google suggested that just using git push --force might be easier, and sure enough it is.

I’ve no idea if this might have repercussions later on, but I’ve no reason to expect it will.

So, as a quick repeat, in case you’re skimming:

If you see: failed to push some refs, do git push --force

Update: you might find that this breaks some of your history, which could be a problem, especially if you’ve got people who forked before you did this. Just a quick warning!