On Sat, Jul 21, 2012 at 03:26:26PM +0100, Ramana Kumar wrote:

> If I forget to set user.email and user.name config options and do a commit
> (possibly the --amend option also required to make this show up), then git
> will drops me into an editor for a commit message, then after that
> complain with the fatal message:
>    *** Please tell me who you are.
> [...]

Hmm. I think this is an artifact of running --amend. In the normal case,
we check the author ident beforehand. But in the --amend case, we take
the existing author, but then fail trying to generate the committer
ident. So we could probably do better by checking both explicitly

>    fatal: empty ident name (for <ramana.ku...@gmail.com>) not allowed

Usually we would fall back to your name from /etc/passwd. I guess it is
blank on your system.

> The commit message I wrote is now lost. This is bad behaviour - the error
> should happen before one writes the commit message, or the message should be
> saved somewhere.

It's not lost. It's in .git/COMMIT_EDITMSG.

We could probably do a better job of informing the user of this when
commit dies prematurely.

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