Git is normally used from the command line, but users interacting with lots of repositories on a regular basis may find it easier to use a GUI based application for Git. A GUI based Git application can provide visual representation of Git repositories, which makes them easier to make sense of. Many apps also have user friendly interfaces that are easy to use as opposed to memorizing a bunch of Git commands.
In this tutorial, we will go over our top 6 choices for GUI based Git applications. We will go over the principal features of each one, and show how to install them on a Linux system. If you have not yet tried using Git from GUI, now is a good time to download one of these free tools and see if it helps you improve your workflow.
In this tutorial you will learn:
- List of Git GUI applications for Linux
|Requirements, Conventions or Software Version Used
|Any Linux distro
|GitKraken, Gitg, GitCola, GitEye, GitAhead, GitExtensions
|Privileged access to your Linux system as root or via the
# – requires given linux commands to be executed with root privileges either directly as a root user or by use of
$ – requires given linux commands to be executed as a regular non-privileged user
GitKraken offers a visually appealing interface and powerful features. It is capable of using drag and drop functionality for branch merging, and has dedicated tools for code review and code commenting. It integrates well with all the most popular hosts, like GitHub, GitLab, and Bitbucket, and can also integrate with various project management tools like Jira and Trello. GitKraken is a free download, but also has a paid version with even more features.
How to install GitKraken
Install GitKraken on Debian, Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and derivative distros:
$ wget https://release.gitkraken.com/linux/gitkraken-amd64.deb $ sudo apt install ./gitkraken-amd64.deb
Install GitKraken on Fedora, CentOS, AlmaLinux, RHEL, and derivative distros:
$ wget https://release.gitkraken.com/linux/gitkraken-amd64.rpm $ sudo dnf install ./gitkraken-amd64.rpm
Install GitKraken on Arch Linux and Manjaro (via AUR):
$ yay -S gitkraken
Gitg provides a very simple and clean interface for visualizing your Git repositories. The clutter free viewing makes it very simple to get an overview of all the repos you are working on, and there are plenty of convenient features like commit graphing, history browsing, and diff viewing. Gitg is free and open source and should work on any Linux distro.
How to install Gitg
Install GitG on Debian, Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and derivative distros:
$ sudo apt install gitg
Install GitG on Fedora, CentOS, AlmaLinux, RHEL, and derivative distros:
$ sudo dnf install gitg
Install GitG on Arch Linux and Manjaro:
$ sudo pacman -S gitg
GitCola is a very easy to use GUI tool, but also packs advanced features under the hood. It features a merge tool, syntax highlighting for multiple programming languages, commit templates, and works with multiple Git hosting services. It is a good choice for new users but still has all of the handy tools that longtime Git users will need. GitCola is free and open source.
How to install GitCola
Install GitCola on Debian, Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and derivative distros:
$ sudo apt install git-cola
Install GitCola on Fedora, CentOS, AlmaLinux, RHEL, and derivative distros:
$ sudo dnf install git-cola
Install GitCola on Arch Linux and Manjaro (via AUR):
$ yay -S git-cola
GitEye works on multiple platforms, including Linux. If you use multiple operating systems to interact with Git, then GitEye will give you a fluid experience across each of them. It offers an interface full of features and advanced settings like Gitflow support, conflict resolution, code review, and can interact with project management tools like Jira and BugZilla. GitEye is free but also offers a paid version to unlock more features and collaboration tools.
How to install GitEye
Head over to the GitEye website to download the software.
GitAhead is another cross platform GUI solution for Git. Its key features include live search, staging area, and commit graphing. It is one of the best applications to be able to see a visual representation of how different commits have been incorporated into your repositories over time. With the staging area feature, it makes it easy to prepare your commits and keep track of your changes.
How to install GitAhead
Visit the GitAhead releases page over on GitHub to download the latest release of GitAhead.
Git Extensions is a GUI application made for Windows, but can also be run on Linux with a compatibility layer like Wine. It provides a full set of features for managing Git repositories, such as Gitflow support (branching model for Git), code review, and integration with popular IDEs, namely Visual Studio Code, and supports multiple Git hosting services.
How to install Git Extensions
Git Extensions can be downloaded from their GitHub repository. Keep in mind you will need to use WINE as a compatibility layer since Git Extensions is intended for Windows systems.
In this tutorial, we saw a list of GUI based Git applications that can be installed and used on a Linux system. A GUI app definitely makes it easier for someone that needs to manage multiple Git repositories and monitor frequent commits. All of the Gui apps covered here will provide unique features and different interfaces, so the one you choose will depend on personal preference or on what Linux distribution you are using.