What is .gitignore file extension / file type
The file that ends with .gitignore is a plain text file just like a .txt file. But it has a special meaning in the Software version control system designed and developed by Git. Git is actually a version control system that is used to control the version of any software program’s source code.
A .gitignore file is used to skip files from being affected by commits while creating a new version or cloning a repository or a bunch of source code. That’s mean, a .gitignore file tells the git system like GitHub – an online-based popular version control system or the Git software itself to ignore one or many files mentioned in the .gitignore files that exist in a working directory of a repository.
The gitignore files are a very common file type among the modern programmer circle. Almost all software companies like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, etc using Git or version control system for updating their products regularly. So all the top-rated software engineers who play with code are using .gitignore files in their daily life.
Creating a .gitignore file
As I mentioned above, GITIGNORE files are pure plain text, but when you will work with a gitignore file to prevent the file from being tracked, you have to maintain the gitignore file syntax and grammar provided by Git. So you can use any text file editor to create a gitignore file, but you have to maintain the grammars.
If your system has configured with a git environment, then you can generate some gitigonre files by the available commands. To learn more about GITIGNORE file and it’s file structure then see the Gitingnore template page on GitHub.
You can create a gitignore file globally by keeping the file on the directory root. Or for applying a gitignore file locally, you can keep the file in the corresponding subdirectories. But always remember to keep the gitignore files in the working directory.
How to open a .gitignore file
.gitignore file can be opened in any program that can read and write plain text. If you are on windows then you can use notepad or notepadd++ to edit or view a .gitignore file. On Mac, you can use gedit and on Linux, you can use geany text editor. But any text editor is supported. Just from the context menu, select open with an installed text editor.
You can use any online Git services like GitHub to maintain your .gitignore files or you can directly maintain .gitignore file from the Git software itself on your system. Git is an open-source cross-platform application that supports Windows, Linux, and macOS. You can download and install the Git from here.