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Re: let's kill svn:externals

From: William Uther <willu_at_cse.unsw.edu.au>
Date: 2003-07-24 07:22:12 CEST

Hi all,

Firstly, I'm not a huge fan of externals. Each time I've tried to use
them they haven't done what I've wanted. However, I would like to have
some way of supporting modules.

The problems I have had with externals have been with either a)
branching (Issue #1258), or b) having to access the repository through
multiple URLs (say, on either side of a firewall) (Issue #1336).

a) If you want to change the externals properties when you branch, then
you have an efficiency problem. The solution - come up with an
identifier that doesn't have to change when you branch. This is a
relative URL.

b) We also want a URL that doesn't change when the repository access
method changes. This is again... a relative URL.

I think allowing relative URLs in svn:externals would solve both these
problems. Sure, there are ways to break this, but it solves the common
cases well. (And to be honest, I have doubts about subversion's
branching model in the cases where it fails. Merge behaves strangely
in many of those cases too.)


Will :-}

Dr William Uther                            National ICT Australia
Phone: +61 2 9385 6926             School of Computer Science and 
Email: willu@cse.unsw.edu.au             University of New South Wales
Jabber: willu@jabber.cse.unsw.edu.au          Sydney, Australia
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Received on Thu Jul 24 07:23:05 2003

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