Commit messages

  • Use present tense in the commit message header

    • The commit message header should be suited to be read in a sentence like: The effect of this commit when merged is to …

    • Remove all easter eggs is good, Removed all easter eggs is bad.

  • Avoid duplications and redundancies

    • When you commit to the testbed repository it is not necessary to use a prefix testbed: (e.g. Remove all easter eggs instead of testbed: remove all easter eggs

    • When you commit to the testbed repository, it is not necessary to say that you are committing to the testbed repository (e.g. Remove all easter eggs instead of Remove all easter eggs in the testbed repository)

  • Add a Signed-off-by: footer to the commit message.

    • You can do this by adding the -s option to the git commit command.

Squash merge

When using squash merge, the commit message must always be revised manually.

The following commit message from a squash merge of a PR with 3 commits makes no sense.

Reposistory for  meeting minutes

* Reposistory for  meeting mintues

Signed-off-by: Max Mustermann <>

* insert new line at the end

Signed-off-by: Max Mustermann <>

* yaml-linting

Signed-off-by: Max Mustermann <>

This commit message should look like the following after the squash merge. Commits that were added in a PR just to make the CI happy do not need to be mentioned in the final commit message.

Multiple lines with a signed-off-by from the same author don’t make sense either.

Reposistory for  meeting minutes

Signed-off-by: Max Mustermann <>

References to issues

We work with the issues from GitHub. The issues can be referenced in commit messages. For this we always use the full path to the issue. See

To close an issue via a commit, Closes osism/NAME_OF_THE_REPOSITORY#NUMBER_OF_THE_ISSUE is used as the last line above the Signed-off-by line.

If a commit belongs to an issue, but does not close it directly, Related to osism/NAME_OF_THE_REPOSITORY#NUMBER_OF_THE_ISSUE or Part of osism/NAME_OF_THE_REPOSITORY#NUMBER_OF_THE_ISSUE is used.

The reference to an issue is never placed directly in the title of the commit message.