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RE: Enhancement suggestions

From: Miller, Eric <Eric.Miller_at_amd.com>
Date: 2007-03-15 17:30:37 CET

Wow. All of my issues with svn summed up in a single post!

Just a few of my favorites:

> - Automatic detection of renames and moves.
And copies- This one is a pain and is mostly related to...

> - No ".svn" folders.
When these get deleted, copied, moved, or looked at funny bad things can
happen. It'd be great to get them out of the working copy at the very
least. I know there has been considerable discussion regarding this in
the past but I don't know if there is any implementation plan.

> - Properly handling of "file with same name exists in working copy".
AKA obstructions- a major pain in some cases. Ever try to fix an
obstructed directory that was scheduled for deletion but not yet

> - The concept of a "unit".
While I think your definition of a 'unit' is sufficient for most, I'd
like to see a configurable option that can define multiple 'unit types'
that can auto-select your path list for versioning operations.
OTOH it's probably just easier to implement this in a wrapper on a
per-case basis than try to come up with a general solution.

> - Inter-branch locking.

Also brought up before - working copy lock tracking.
Tracking down locks based on uid alone is not sufficient - hostname and
working copy path all should be logged when a lock is acquired.

Great stuff!


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Peter [mailto:bf3@telenet.be]
> Sent: Thursday, March 15, 2007 5:22 AM
> To: dev@subversion.tigris.org
> Subject: Enhancement suggestions
> Hi,
> A couple of years ago, I developed a source control system - called
> Evolver - for a company that hired me. The company made video-games,
> wanted a source control system that was powerful enough for
> yet very easy to use for the other kinds of users (mainly "artists").
> Evolver worked exclusive on Windows/NTFS, but I guess most NTFS
> are also found in Unix-like systems.
> Although subversion goes way beyond the system I developed, I do miss
> couple of things. I must admit I'm new to subversion, so some of these
> might already be implemented.
> - Automatic detection of renames and moves. Evolver used NTFS
> object-identifiers and the change-journal to track this.
> - No "cleanup" needed. Because the above, "cleanup" did not exist. All
> possible changes allowed by the file system got tracked automatically.
> The only "cleanup" needed was when a new file with the same name as a
> deleted file was created. Although most of the time this issue was
> handled internally by NTFS file tunneling, it could happen when
> moved a file with the same name across different volumes.
> - Properly handling of "file with same name exists in working copy".
> - Concept of "generated" files. When a conflict occured on these
> they got deleted by default, because they can be re-generated. Of
> a build-system like SCONS that uses caching is much more suitable to
> handle this, but this is not always usable with content creation tools
> that often do not support batch / command-line support.
> - Semi atomic updates. Using a method of file locking and renaming,
> update of a working folder either completely succeeded or failed.
> Rollback after a failure was possible because a special naming scheme.
> - No ".svn" folders. Evolver stored all information in extra NTFS
> streams, removing clutter.
> - The concept of a "unit". Currently, it is possible to commit just
> file, but doing this is a bit like hacking. Usually one works on a
> "project" which is an atomic unit. Committing only a subset of changes
> is dangerous because they cannot be tested, and this quickly converges
> into a "but it works on my machine" situation. In Subversion a "unit"
> would be just some parent directory that is always used when
> unless explicitly overriden.
> - Dependencies to other units. A unit usually makes use of other
> Changes in the dependencies must usually be committed at the same
> - NTFS junctions and hardlinks. I've seen this in discussions but have
> no idea what the current status is. We used junctions to dependencies,
> so that all required files were located under a single project
> directory. The problem is that Windows itself does not support
> junctions/hardlinks (e.g. Windows Explorer does not understand them).
> - Concept of automatic locking of files. Although subversion supports
> locking now, it must still be performed manually? Evolver performed an
> automatic lock as soon as a file was overwritten. After all, binary
> files cannot be merged, and parallel evolution of such a files should
> prohibited as soon as possible. Binary files are evil, but they are
> common in content development systems (Adobe Flash, Autodesk 3D
> MAX, Adobe Photoshop, etc).
> - Multiple branches in the same working folder. One directory could
> contain assets for multiple branches at the same time. One just
> the current branch, and commits/updates automatically pick a parent
> branch for finding the "common/base" revision. I have a feeling
> subversion supports this, but I haven't figured out yet how.
> - Inter-branch locking. A binary file that lives in multiple branches
> could be locked in all branches at the same time.
> - By default, reverting a directory deletes local files in it. After
> all, reverting restores the previous revision, and since the file did
> not exist in the previous revision, its previous state is void.
> - An experimental feature was "refactor friendly structured storage".
> instead of storing dumb source code, a DOM was stored instead, using
> unique-object-identifiers instead of names to refer to symbols. So
> basically, source control did not stop on the file level, but at the
> object level. Merging was done on this tree, which eased extreme
> programming and refactoring. For example, renaming a class was just
> change to the DOM in which the class was declared, although it might
> change dozens of source text files that used it. This was never used
> because it would also require different source code editors that work
> the symbolic level.
> I hope this information was useful, although I'm not expecting to see
> any of this in subversion soon, as you guys probably have really good
> reasons not to have implemented these "features".
> Cheers,
> Peter
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Received on Thu Mar 15 17:31:13 2007

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