The Branches view shows local and remote branches, tags and other refs from your repository and offers operations on these refs. Remotes will also be displayed and used to group the remote branches.
The current branch is shown with the filled triangle and bold text. Any other tag or branch that points to the same commit as HEAD (the current branch) is shown with a non-filled triangle. Lightly displayed branches below a remote indicate branches that are tracked by local branches (AKA already locally available).
Behind a tracked branch you can find symbols to indicate the the tracking state. An ‘=’ indicates that the tracking branch is equal to its tracked branch. An ‘>’ indicates “outgoing” commits, an ‘<’ “incoming” commits.
The checkboxes in front of refs (only in the Branches view of the Log window) are used to select which branches are shown in the Graph. The used color inside the checkbox is the color used in the Graph for the ref symbol. Clicking a checkbox of a category (e.g. “Features” or “<remote>”) selects/unselects all refs of this category.
If “Recyclable Commits” is selected, all commits not reachable by refs are shown in the Graph. That is useful to, e.g., access a previous commit after amending a commit, or after a ref has been deleted.
The Tags-part of the Branches view will be grouped according to
a tag-grouping configuration. This configuration is stored in your
.git/config and can be edited in the Log using
View|Tag-Grouping. To disable this grouping feature for the current
repository, set both Pattern fields empty.