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git-annex-unused(1) General Commands Manual git-annex-unused(1)


git-annex-unused - look for unused file content


git annex unused


Checks the annex for data that does not correspond to any files present in any tag or branch, and prints a numbered list of the data.

After running this command, you can use the --unused option with many other git-annex commands to operate on all the unused data that was found.

For example, to move all unused data to origin:

git annex unused; git annex move --unused --to origin


Only show unused temp and bad files.
Check for unused data that is located in a repository.
The repository should be specified using the name of a configured remote, or the UUID or description of a repository.
By default, any data that the work tree uses, or that any refs in the git repository point to is considered to be used. If you only want to use some refs, you can use this option to specify the ones to use. Data that is not in the specified refs (and not used by the work tree) will then be considered unused.
The git configuration annex.used-refspec can be used to configure this in a more permanent fashion.


The refspec format for --used-refspec is a colon-separated list of additions and removals of refs. For example:


This adds all refs/heads/ refs, as well as the previous version of HEAD. It also adds all tags, except for old-tag.

The refspec is processed by starting with an empty set of refs, and walking the list in order from left to right.

Each + using a glob is matched against all relevant refs (a subset of git show-ref) and all matching refs are added to the set. For example, "+refs/remotes/*" adds all remote refs.

Each + without a glob adds the literal value to the set. For example, "+HEAD^" adds "HEAD^".

Each - is matched against the set of refs accumulated so far. Any matching refs are removed from the set.

"reflog" adds all the refs from the reflog. This will make past versions of files not be considered to be unused until the ref expires from the reflog (by default for 90 days). Note that this may make git-annex unused take some time to complete, it if needs to check every ref from the reflog.






Joey Hess <>