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A Quick Start Guide to TortoiseHg

.. module:: tour
	:synopsis: A Gentle Introduction to Using TortoiseHg on Windows

Welcome to TortoiseHg and the Mercurial!  TortoiseHg is a set of graphical
applications and Windows Explorer shell extension that serve as a friendly
front-end to the Mercurial distributed version control system (DVCS).

All TortoiseHg functionality is reachable from 3 places:

1. The :command:`Workbench` application
	You can start the Workbench from the Start Menu, or by right clicking on the
	Desktop and selecting :menuselection:`Hg Workbench`.

	.. figure:: figures/desktop-workbench.png
		:alt: Desktop Context Menu

	Start the Workbench from the Desktop

2. The :command:`Explorer` context menu
	All you have to do is right click on the right folder or files in Explorer,
	and select a context menu entry.

3. The :command:`thg` command line application
	Type the appropriate commands from any command line interface, in the form
	:kbd:`thg <command> [options]`.

In this quick guide we would like to make you get started using the Workbench
application, but we will also indicate how to do the same with the other

Mercurial commands are also available from the standard :command:`hg` command
line application.

Configuring TortoiseHg

Your first step should be to make sure that you are correctly identified
to TortoiseHg.  You do this by opening the global settings dialog.

Workbench: select :menuselection:`File --> Settings...` from the menu

Explorer: choose :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Global Settings` from the
context menu

Command line: type :command:`thg userconfig`

This opens the TortoiseHg settings dialog, editing your global
(user) configuration.

.. figure:: figures/settings.png
	:alt: Settings Dialog

	TortoiseHg Settings Dialog

First select the :guilabel:`Commit` page and enter a name in the
:guilabel:`Username` field.

.. note::
	If you neglect to configure a username TortoiseHg will ask you to
	enter one when you try to *commit*, which is the first time a
	username is actually required.

.. note::
	There are no hard fast rules on how to format your username, the
	field is free form, but the following convention is commonly used::
		FullName <email>
	for example ::
		Donald Duck <>
	The email address is stripped when viewing history in the revision history
	viewer, and the built-in web server obfuscates email addresses to
	prevent SPAM.

Next, select the :guilabel:`TortoiseHg` page and select the
:guilabel:`Three-way Merge Tool` entry.  In the drop down list you will
find all of the merge tools detected on your computer (kdiff3 is
provided by the Windows installer) and a number of internal merge
behaviors.  Select your preferred merge tool.

If you prefer for TortoiseHg to also use your selected merge tool for
visual diffs, you can leave the :guilabel:`Visual Diff Tool`
unspecified.  Otherwise, select your favorite visual diff tool from the
drop down list of detected visual diff tools.

If there are no options in either drop-down list, you must install a
diff/merge tool that is supported by our mergetools.rc or configure your
own tool.

.. note::
	If you installed TortoiseHg from source, you need to add our
	:file:`contrib/mergetools.ini` file to your HGRC path in some way.  One
	approach is to *%include* it from your :file:`~/.hgrc` file.

Feel free to configure other global settings while you have the dialog
open.  You will have the chance later to override these global settings
with repository local settings, if required.

Click the :guilabel:`OK` button to save the changes you have made and
close the settings dialog.

.. note::
	Most TortoiseHg settings changes are noticed immediately, but
	loading or unloading extensions usually requires restarting all open
	applications for the changes to take effect.

Getting Acquainted

Mercurial supports many different
`collaboration models <>`_.
This chapter describes just one of those models: a single central repository.
The central repository model does not scale as well as other models, but
it is the most familiar to those coming from other revision tools and
thus is the most common approach people start with.

To get started, suppose you volunteer to create the central repository.
There are ways to `convert <>`_
non-Mercurial repositories into Mercurial repositories, but this example
assumes you are starting from scratch.

Initialize the repository

Create the initial repository on your local machine:

Workbench: select :menuselection:`File --> New Repository...` from the menu

Explorer: select :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Create Repository Here` from
the context menu

Command line: type :command:`thg init`

You can do this from within the folder you want to create the repository in, or
enter the correct path in the dialog. You only need to do this once in the root
folder of your project.

.. figure:: figures/init.png
	:alt: Init dialog

	Repository Init Dialog

We suggest you keep :guilabel:`Add special files (.hgignore, ...)`
checked, and do not check :guilabel:`Make repo compatible with Mercurial < 1.7`, 
unless you have a strong reason to do so.

After pressing :guilabel:`Create`, Mercurial creates a subdirectory in
your project folder named :file:`.hg`.  This is where Mercurial keeps all
its version data.  It is called the *repository* or *store*, while the
directory containing the source files is called the *working directory*.
You never need to specify the :file:`.hg` directory when running
commands, you only need to specify the working directory root.  It is
mentioned here just so you better understand how Mercurial works.

The new repository will also be added to the RepoRegistry when you perform this
operation from the Workbench.

.. warning::
	It is dangerous to manually edit the files in :file:`.hg` directory,
	repository corruption can occur.  :file:`.hg/hgrc` is perhaps the
	only exception to this rule.

.. note::
	Perhaps you already created one or more repositories.  As you can manage
	multiple repositories in the Workbench at the same time, you can add these
	existing repositories by selecting :menuselection:`File --> Open Repository...`
	from its menu, and selecting their folder.  Or you could drag their folder
	from Explorer into the RepoRegistry pane.

Add files

Now it's time to tell Mercurial which files must be tracked. There are various
ways to do this:

1. Workbench: goto the Commit task tab, rightclick on the file, and select
   :menuselection:`Add` from the context menu. This will change the status
   indication of that file into 'A' and the filename will turn green.

2. Explorer: select :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Add Files...` in the context
   menu. A dialog will open for you to check the selected files and accept the
   add operation. You can also open the status tool by selecting
   :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> View File Status`. Check the files you want
   to add and select :guilabel:`Add` from the file context menu.

3. Command line: type :command:`thg status`

4. Or skip adding new files as a separate step and have the commit tool add them
   implicitly.  The commit tool is very similar to the status tool and allows
   you to do all of the same tasks. In this tool you can add and commit an
   untracked file by just checking the file and pressing :guilabel:`Commit`.

Ignore files

You may have some files in the foldertree of your repository that you don't want
to track. These can be intermediate results from builds f.i. that you do not
wish to always delete immediately, or files your editor generates, etc. You can
mark these files as ignored in some different ways too.

1. Workbench: goto the Commit task tab, rightclick on the file, and select
   :menuselection:`Ignore...` from the context menu to open the ignore filter

2. Explorer: select :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Edit Ignore Filter`.
3. Command line: type :command:`thg hgignore` to bring up the ignore filter dialog.

4. You can also launch the ignore filter from the status tool (the menu option
   is named :guilabel:`Ignore`).

Choose a file from the list or manually type in a *Glob* or *Regular expression*
filter and then press :guilabel:`Add`. Changes to the ignore filter take effect

.. note::
	The :file:`.hgignore` file, contained in the working directory root,
	is typically tracked (checked in).

.. note::
	It is good practice to not have many *unknown* files in your working
	directory, as it makes it too easy to forget to add vital new files.
	It is recommended that you keep your :file:`.hgignore` file up to

Commit your local repository now:

Workbench: click on the Working Directory revision which also selects the Commit
task tab, or directly select the Commit task tab

Explorer: right-clicking anywhere in the folder, or on the folder itself, and
then selecting :guilabel:`Hg Commit...`

Command line: type :command:`thg commit`

Write a commit message, select the files you wish to commit, then press
:guilabel:`Commit`.  Your previous commit message will be in the message history
drop-down, so you do not have to type it in again from scratch.

.. figure:: figures/commit.png
	:alt: Commit dialog

	Commit Tool

Share the repository

Now you are ready to share your work. You do this by making a copy of
your repository in a public location that everyone in your group can
read. Mercurial calls this copy operation *cloning your repository*.

To clone your repository to a shared drive:

Workbench: select :menuselection:`File --> Clone Repository...` from the menu

Explorer: select :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Clone...` from
the context menu

Command line: type :command:`thg clone`

Then enter the destination path, and click :guilabel:`Clone`.

.. figure:: figures/share.png
	:alt: Clone dialog

	Clone Dialog

When you create a clone for the purposes of generating a *central
repository* there is no reason for that clone to have a working
directory.  Checking :guilabel:`Do not update the new working directory` under
:guilabel:`Options` will prevent Mercurial from checking out a working copy of
the repository in the central repository clone.  It will only have the
:file:`.hg` directory, which stores the entire revision history of the project.

Other team members can clone from this clone with or without a checked
out working directory.

Fetching from the group repository

You want to start collaborating with your team.  They tell you something
like *fetch the repository from x*.  What does that mean? It means that
you want to make a copy of the repository located at x on your local machine.
Mercurial calls this cloning and TortoiseHg has a dialog for it.

Workbench: select :menuselection:`File --> Clone Repository...` from the menu

Explorer: select :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Clone...` from
the context menu

Command line: type :command:`thg clone`

Then enter the destination path, and click :guilabel:`OK`.

.. figure:: figures/clone.png
	:alt: Clone dialog

	Clone Dialog

This time you do want to update the working directory because you want
to work on the project, under :guilabel:`Options` uncheck
:guilabel:`Do not update the new working directory` so Mercurial updates
the working directory with the *tip* revision in your new clone.

Working with your repository

Suppose you've introduced some changes.  It is easy to discover what pending
changes there are in the repository.  

Workbench: go to the Commit task tab and inspect the filelist at the left

Any files marked with 'A' (added, green), with '?' (unversioned but not ignored,
fuchsia), with 'M' (modified, blue), or with '!' (removed, red) indicate pending
changes that should be committed.

The Commit task tab in the Workbench gives you a way to see differences within
the files, or you can use your visual difference tool (kdiff3).  Mercurial
allows you to commit many changes before you decide to synchronize (share
changes) with the group repository.

Explorer: inspect the icons on the folders and files in your repository

Folders or files in Explorer marked with one of the icons below are another way of
indicating pending changes.  You can traverse the directories to find specific
changes and commit them from Explorer. Though it might be quicker to do that
from the Commit task tab in the Workbench.

.. figure:: figures/overlayicons.png
	:alt: Overlay Icons 

	Overlay Icons on Vista

Command line: type :command:`thg commit`

When you're ready to publish your changes, you

1. Commit your changes to your local repository (see above).
2. Pull changes from the group repository into your repository using
   :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Workbench` or :command:`thg log`, select the
   Sync task tab, choose the path to the group repository in the syncbar and
   then click the :guilabel:`Pull` button.
3. If some changesets were pulled, merge those changes with your local
   changes and then commit the merge into your local repository. From
   the revision history viewer (:menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Workbench`
   or :command:`thg log`) open the context menu over the changeset
   which you want to merge and select :guilabel:`Merge with local...`.
   Finally, in the merge dialog, press :guilabel:`Merge` and then
4. Ensure your merged work still builds and passes your extensive test suite.
5. Push your changes to the group repository,
   :menuselection:`TortoiseHg --> Workbench` or :command:`thg log`,
   select the path to group repository and then click the :guilabel:`Push`

Which may sound complicated, but is easier than it sounds.

.. note::
	Merges can be safely restarted if necessary.

Mercurial makes collaboration easy, fast, and productive.
Learn more at Mercurial's `wiki <>`_.

.. vim: noet ts=4