From: "W. Trevor King" <>

If you try and update a submodule with a dirty working directory, you
get an error message like:

  $ git submodule update
  error: Your local changes to the following files would be overwritten by 
  Please, commit your changes or stash them before you can switch branches.

Mention this in the submodule notes.  The previous phrase was short
enough that I originally thought it might have been referring to the
reflog note (obviously, uncommitted changes will not show up in the
reflog either ;).

Signed-off-by: W. Trevor King <>
 Documentation/user-manual.txt | 4 +++-
 1 file changed, 3 insertions(+), 1 deletion(-)

diff --git a/Documentation/user-manual.txt b/Documentation/user-manual.txt
index 3aab106..df7524a 100644
--- a/Documentation/user-manual.txt
+++ b/Documentation/user-manual.txt
@@ -3739,7 +3739,9 @@ module a
 NOTE: The changes are still visible in the submodule's reflog.
-This is not the case if you did not commit your changes.
+If you have uncommitted changes in your submodule working tree, `git
+submodule update` will not overwrite them.  Instead, you get the usual
+warning about not being able switch from a dirty branch.
 Low-level git operations

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