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Feature request: --preserve-merges to add "exec git merge ..." instead of "pick ..."




Hello,
(this is my first message on this list, so hello everybody. I hope I
found the correct channel.)

I recently discovered the --preserve-merges option in git rebase,
I think it is nice, but it does not always do what I intend.

I am proposing a variation of this option which would behave differently.

## Use case

We have an acceptance branch that is frequently rebased on master.
At any given time, the acceptance branch should start with master, and
then merge in those feature branches that were selected for acceptance
testing.
Nobody is supposed to work on acceptance, it is only meant for
deployment on the acceptance server.

This means we need a rebase operation where:
- The commits of the acceptance branch itself are being replaced.
- The commits of the feature branches remain as they are.

A "git rebase --preserve-merges" almost does this, but not really.

## Proposal

Add a new option for rebase, similar to --preserve-merges, where:
Instead of "git pick MERGE_COMMIT", we get this line in the rebase
editor (if using the -i option):
exec git merge MERGE_COMMIT^2 -m"Merge FEATURE_BRANCH into acceptance."

In --interactive / -i mode, the developer can leave these lines as
they are, or replace them manually to merge a more recent version of
the feature branch.
E.g. replace this
exec git merge MERGE_COMMIT^2 -m"Merge FEATURE_BRANCH into acceptance."
with this
exec git merge FEATURE_BRANCH_RECENT

This would achieve the behavior as described in "Use case".
I have not thought about a name for this option yet, I first want to
see some general feedback.

Possibly related:
https://public-inbox.org/git/87y3jtqdyg.fsf@xxxxxxxxx/
I think the author of this RFC has different expectations what a
rebase should do, so it is not really the same.


------------

I hope this was the correct way to propose this kind of feature. If
not, let me know where I can find more information.

Greetings,
Andreas Hennings
https://github.com/donquixote