Thursday, August 12, 2004

Subversion and Apache

Adam Swift writes about how to set up a Subversion server using Mac OS X’s Apache (via Bill Bumgarner). I opted instead for the simpler client installation, and for the past week or so I’ve been getting ready to migrate to Subversion. It’s a rather involved process, because cvs2svn requires a newer version of Berkeley DB than ships with Mac OS X, and newer Python bindings to go with it. CVSTrac doesn’t work with Subversion, so I will simultaneously switch to Trac, which is considerably more complicated to install and has no import script for CVSTrac.

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Just curious, what did you find so compelling about Subversion (over CVS) that'd make you want to go through all that?

I can't speak for Michael, but my two primary reasons for switching to svn was 1) I can move/rename folders mostly with impunity and 2) binary files Just Work.

Yeah, I just like that svn fixes most of what's wrong with CVS. What Rentzsch said, plus I like the better tagging and branching.

Two words: Atomic Commits.

That CVS does not have atomic commits is an inexcusable potential risk to the integrity of your repository, but it negatively impacts your thinking as a developer.

Worse, much much worse, is that CVS makes developers think that their development process is limited to that which can be supported by CVS. With CVS, branching and tagging are expensive. Therefore, developers assume that branching isn't something you should be able to do at whim.

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