I've followed the process for git-completion as per the description provided at https://medium.com/@farooqyousuf/autocomplete-git-commands-and-branch-names-in-terminal-on-mac-os-x-4e0beac0388a:

The first step is to execute this command in your terminal window, this is basically grabbing the ‘git-completion.bash’ script and putting it in your home directory.

curl https://raw.githubusercontent.com/git/git/master/contrib/completion/git-completion.bash -o ~/.git-completion.bash

Now add this line to your ‘~/.bash_profile’. This will allow the execution of the git autocomplete script if it present

if [ -f ~/.git-completion.bash ]; then
  . ~/.git-completion.bash

You can now restart all your terminal windows or just refresh the terminal window you wish to use this script in. To refresh do:

source ~/.bash_profile

Following is the error I'm getting while hitting tab key after typing git:

unknown option: --list-cmds=list-mainporcelain,others,nohelpers,alias,list-complete,config
usage: git [--version] [--help] [-C <path>] [-c <name>=<value>]
  [--exec-path[=<path>]] [--html-path] [--man-path] [--info-path]
  [-p | --paginate | --no-pager] [--no-replace-objects] [--bare]
  [--git-dir=<path>] [--work-tree=<path>] [--namespace=<name>]
  <command> [<args>]
  • Whaty version of git are yiuy using and what version does bash_completion ask for? – mmmmmm Jun 15 '18 at 12:49
  • git version 2.17.1 – Rishi Kulshreshtha Jun 15 '18 at 12:51
  • I'm getting the same on Mac and Ubuntu too. git versions 2.4.7 and 2.17. – wisbucky Jun 19 '18 at 0:02

I ran into the exact same problem. After some digging, I finally figured out what the root problem is.

They made some major changes to the git-completion.bash script which requires a new feature in git v2.18, --list-cmds. The problem is that none of the package managers have updated to git v2.18 yet.

Most of the instructions out there say to download raw.githubusercontent.com/git/git/master/contrib/completion/git-completion.bash . But that is not necessarily the best option because sometimes you will be downloading a newer git-completion.bash than your version of git supports.

So the solution is to download the git-completion.bash version that matches your git version. Then source it again. In this case:


Notice that it is referencing v2.17.1 instead of master. Later, when you install git v2.18, then you can switch back to master, or v2.18 tag.

| improve this answer | |

Upgrading the git to the latest version is the simplest solution. https://git-scm.com/download/mac

After that make sure you follow the steps

  1. curl https://raw.githubusercontent.com/git/git/master/contrib/completion/git-completion.bash -o ~/.git-completion.bash

  2. Add this small command into the .bash_profile file if [ -f ~/.git-completion.bash ]; then . ~/.git-completion.bash fi

| improve this answer | |

Don't build it from source; instead install from MacPorts.

To install git with auto-completion, issue the following command:

 $ sudo port install git +bash_completion

close and reopen your Terminal and git completion should work

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  • I've tried this but didn't resolve the issue. It's still the same. – Rishi Kulshreshtha Jun 15 '18 at 12:40
  • Issue this command: sudo find / -type -name "git-completion.bash" and post the results to your question. – Allan Jun 15 '18 at 13:17

You should verify your git version and make sure it is updated to at least 1.8.

I had an older version 1.7.11 but that didn't work and got the same error you have.

| improve this answer | |

If you use Homebrew, you may want to

  1. upgrade git:

    brew upgrade git

  2. source the installed git-completion.bash in your ~/.bash_profile:

    . /usr/local/etc/bash_completion.d/git-completion.bash

This makes sure the installed git and completion script versions match.

| improve this answer | |

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