Git Config Changes Not Saved When Edited With Notepad++

Turns out, closing the tab isn't enough

[2 minute read]

This is pretty stupid, but here it goes.

A few minutes ago I decided to try something new: editing Git config settings with an external text editor. My default text editor is Notepad++. So I typed git config -e -global into my Git terminal window, made the changes I wanted, saved and closed the file. Well that was easy! But let’s run that command again, just to make sure it worked. Again I typed git config -e -global. Much to my chagrin, the changes I just made were not there. Hmm, what in the world could I be missing here? I know I’m something of a Git noob, but this should be pretty straight forward, no?

I tried again. No dice.

I googled for an answer. No luck.

I read and re-read the documentation. No insights.

I cursed and groaned, annoying my girlfriend in the other room.

And then, it occurred to me: could it be, that Notepad++ needs to exit completely in order for the changes to persist? I was closing the specific tab containing the Git config file, but left the application itself running.

That was it. Once I closed Notepad++ completely, THEN ran git config -e -global, THEN made my changes and saved the file, and THEN closed Notepad++ completely, THEN my changes persisted.

Hope this helps the next Git noob that encounters this issue!