How to remove a directory from git repository?


I have 2 directories on my GitHub repository. I'd like to delete one of them. How could I do that without deleting and re-creating entire repository?

12/28/2016 8:29:06 AM

Accepted Answer

Remove directory from git and local

You could checkout 'master' with both directories;

git rm -r one-of-the-directories // This deletes from filesystem
git commit . -m "Remove duplicated directory"
git push origin <your-git-branch> (typically 'master', but not always)

Remove directory from git but NOT local

As mentioned in the comments, what you usually want to do is remove this directory from git but not delete it entirely from the filesystem (local)

In that case use:

git rm -r --cached myFolder
4/18/2020 4:24:30 PM

To remove folder/directory only from git repository and not from the local try 3 simple commands.

Steps to remove directory

git rm -r --cached FolderName
git commit -m "Removed folder from repository"
git push origin master

Steps to ignore that folder in next commits

To ignore that folder from next commits make one file in root folder (main project directory where the git is initialized) named .gitignore and put that folder name into it. You can ignore as many files/folders as you want

.gitignore file will look like this


remove directory


If, for some reason, what karmakaze said doesn't work, you could try deleting the directory you want using or with your file system browser (ex. In Windows File Explorer). After deleting the directory, issuing the command:
git add -A
and then
git commit -m 'deleting directory'
and then
git push origin master.


You can try this: git rm -rf <directory_name>

It will force delete the directory.


If you remove the files in the directory (with git rm as the other answers explain), then the directory no longer exists as far as git is concerned. You cannot commit an empty directory, nor can you remove one.

This is unlike subversion where you have to explicitly svn rm emptyfolder/, and is incidentally why the man page for git describes itself as "the stupid content tracker"

An answer on "How do I add an empty directory to a git repository" links to the FAQ on this subject:

Currently the design of the git index (staging area) only permits files to be listed, and nobody competent enough to make the change to allow empty directories has cared enough about this situation to remedy it.

Directories are added automatically when adding files inside them. That is, directories never have to be added to the repository, and are not tracked on their own.

You can say "git add <dir>" and it will add files in there.

If you really need a directory to exist in checkouts you should create a file in it. .gitignore works well for this purpose; you can leave it empty, or fill in the names of files you expect to show up in the directory.


I already had committed the folder before and want to remove the directory in the history as well.

I did the following:

Add folder to .gitignore:

echo Folder_Name/ >> .gitignore

Remove from all commits:

git filter-branch --index-filter 'git rm -rf --cached --ignore-unmatch Folder_Name/' --prune-empty --tag-name-filter cat -- --all

remove the refs from the old commits:

git for-each-ref --format="%(refname)" refs/original/ | xargs -n 1 git update-ref -d

Ensure all old refs are fully removed

rm -Rf .git/logs .git/refs/original

Perform a garbage collection

git gc --prune=all --aggressive

push you changes to the online repository:

git push

You are done here.

But you can to the following to push all the changes to all branches with: But be careful with this command!

git push origin --all --force
git push origin --tags --force

After that the folder was removed from git, but was not deleted from local disk.