I'm at home, and too lazy to log in to work to look at my tree. But I
have a theory
as to what went wrong for me.
At the start I had a file, same contents in test and release branch.
I applied a patch to release, and pulled to test. So the contents are still
the same, both with the patch applied.
Next, I was given a better patch (the first one just masked the real problem
and happened to make the symptoms go away). This patch touches a
completely different file. So I applied a patch to revert the change
and the new patch.
Now ... when I try to merge release into test, my guess is that GIT is
looking at the common ancestor before I touched anything. So when
it compares the current state of this file it sees that I have the bad patch
in the test tree, and the release tree has the "original" version (which has
had the patch applied and reverted ... so the contents are back at the
So GIT decides that the test branch has had a patch, and the release
branch hasn't ... and so it merges by keeping the version in test.
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