This tutorial explains how to delete both local and remote branches in GitHub.

First, run the command git branch -a or git branch --all to list both local and remote branches.

In the example below, the repository is on the featuredev branch:

B:\ch12>git branch -a
* featuredev
  remotes/origin/HEAD -> origin/main

From the above command, we have the following list of branches: Local Branches: featuredev, main Remote Branches: remotes/origin/featuredev, remotes/origin/main

Deleting a Local Branch in Git

To delete a local branch in Git, follow these steps

First, checkout the local branch you want to delete

B:\ch12>git checkout featuredev
Already on 'featuredev'
Your branch is up to date with 'origin/featuredev'.

Now, you can delete the local branch in multiple ways.

  • Using the --delete --force option

    git branch --delete --force localbranch
  • Using the -D option, where -D is an alias for --delete --force

    git branch -D localbranch
  • Using --delete

    git branch --delete  localbranch

Deleting a Remote Branch in Git

First, list out all remote branches using the git branch -r or git branch --remotes command

B:\ch12>git branch -r
  origin/HEAD -> origin/main

With recent Git versions, you can delete using the --delete option with git push. It deletes the remote branch and pushes the changes.

git push origin --delete branchname

git push origin -d branchname

Here, -d is an alias for the --delete option. With older versions of Git, you can use.

git push origin:branch

For example:

B:\ch12>git push origin --delete featuredev
 - [deleted]         featuredev

This removes the remote branch and its references from the local repository. However, if other developers are using this remote repository, the references are still pointing to the remote repository, and a deleted branch is shown to them.

To delete from other developer systems, use the following command:

git remote prune featuredev