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applying patches to multiple branches

From: Ben Elliston <bje_at_air.net.au>
Date: 2002-12-22 03:06:55 CET

While reading the Subversion book, it occured to me that there might be
something that Subversion can do to make my work easier. Perhaps it falls
outside the scope of the tool, in which case I will start thinking about
ways to script something to do the job for me. I'd just like to throw
this idea out there and get some criticism :-P.

Suppose I have a large source tree on the trunk which has been branched
repeatedly over a few years. Now suppose a customer reports a bug in a
version of the software from their branch made in 1997. That bug may
affect either:

  * every branch (including the trunk); or
  * the branch in question and all branches made from that branch
    after the branch was created.

Since I may have a huge tree and not want to check it all out into a local
working copy, I am faced with the problem of not being easily able to
apply that patch "everywhere" that it would make sense to apply it.
That is, there is a looming issue of patch management:

  * where are all my branches, exactly (presumable solved by policy?); and
  * how do I apply my patch to all affected branches in a bandwidth and
    time efficient manner?

It would be great if I could, at the very least:

  * identify branches that are missing the patch;
  * have subversion tell me if my patch would apply cleanly to each of
    the affected branches;
  * perhaps even apply them for me without requiring a working copy of
    each branch. (I realise this is a little foolish in that all branches
    should be checked out, built and tested, but often, we are able to
    make that call on sufficiently trivial patches that affect enough
    branches)

Comments?

Ben

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Received on Sun Dec 22 04:51:54 2002

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