Hatice Özkan

Sysadmin & Devops Engineer

What is GIT and why it is so important to use it in our projects

19 July 2022

GIT is a tool used for source code management. It is an open-source version control system commonly used for coordinating among developers. But what is a “version control system”?

Imagine that there is a multinational company located in several countries with a vast number of employees, like Making Science! What problems and challenges can there be in such a big company where many people work on the same project? 

  • First, collaboration is one of the main problems when people want to communicate about a software product. As we know, a project is developed by a group of people, and each one of them can configure different features for the code; a version control system helps the developers efficiently track all the modifications that have been made in the source code. While managing the changes, it also records what changes have been done by whom and when. 
  • Secondly, storing versions can be the other significant problem. We know that a project can not be finished with just one version. Version control system helps you to manage multiple versions of a project, and while it is doing it, it keeps the source code organized. It allows for creating a new branch for every developer who makes changes in the code, and these changes don’t get merged with the original code without being analyzed by the other developers. After the new code has approvals by the other contributors, it is ready to integrate with the main source code and be the latest version of the project. In this way, people can work with a copy of the project. They can edit and make their changes without affecting the work of others and finally, commit the changes when it is finished. Therefore, it provides productivity and enhances the team’s efficiency by reducing possible errors and conflicts. 
  • Finally, the last challenge is restoring previous versions. Suppose you keep your project on your computer, on an external disk, or in a cloud system. In that case, you need to constantly back up your project, considering the possibility of making a mistake or a problem with your project. For this reason, you start to save your project version by version. Since the version control system keeps track of every modification, if we face a bug in the updated version and the new version is not working correctly, it would be much easier to omit the latest changes and continue with the previous version. Depending on the size of your project, this process can be pretty complex. If you use GIT, you shouldn’t have this problem. You can access the last saved version of your project at any time, or you can return it any day. One of the essential benefits is that it gives us a chance to recover in case of any disaster or unexpected situation. 

Considering everything, with the help of GIT, many people can work concurrently on a single project. Everyone works on their branch and can share the changes with the rest of the team whenever they want. It provides access to previous versions of the project. If there is any mistake, we can always roll back or undo the changes without losing any work.

GIT helps us handle possible problems that may occur while working on a software project.