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Re: [Subclipse-dev] Here we go again

From: Mark Phippard <markp_at_softlanding.com>
Date: 2006-07-19 01:29:49 CEST

Daniel Rall <dlr@collab.net> wrote on 07/18/2006 06:48:32 PM:

> While I have not used Subversive, from a marketing perspective the
> most compelling of their advertised features is "Interactive merge
> operation, similar to merge in Eclipse CVS plug-in".

Given all of the work you have been doing on merge in Subversion, I am
surprised you feel that way. I think this "feature" is the biggest crock
in all of their stuff I have seen. Personally, I do not think it is
possible to do this. I do not think the API's are really there in Eclipse
or SVN. Although, I do admit that I do not know why CVS would be
different.

But to give you an example, I tested this feature today. Until recent
versions, merge always crashed. Anyway, last week I changed the license
headers in all of the code. Today I committed some other changes to
files. I wanted to merge just todays changes to our 1.0.x branch. Pretty
classic merge scenario. I entered all of the correct data in their merge
dialog, and the Synch view brought up just the files that I changed in the
revision I wanted. However, when I brought up the interactive merge, it
was just a straight compare of the 1.0.x version with the trunk version.
In other words, the license header changes also showed up as differences
to bring in. That is exactly what I thought would happen, and in my
opinion makes the feature useless.

Personally, I like doing it the Subversion way. Let Subversion do its
stuff, then I can look at my working copy and see what it did, as well as
resolve any conflicts. With the merge tracking stuff you are doing, it
should just get even easier.

> > This is what OSS is all about : 10 years ago, it wouldn't have
> > crossed Polarion's decision makers minds that they needed to give
> > away subversion to enter the market.
>
> It didn't. In the 6 years I've been working on Subversion, I have
> never seen Polarion contribute a single line of code to the project.

In my 3 years, neither have I.

> It's good business sense that for-profit companies rely on OSS for
> part of their software stack.
>
> Unfortunately, to some for-profit companies this seems to mean taking
> the code from an OSS project, hacking it, and rebranding it without
> crediting their "inspiration".

I agree. As a counter example, my company ported Subversion to OS/400 so
that we could use it in our commercial stack. We worked on the port with
the Subversion community and we host and support binaries for OS/400 for
free for everyone in the OS/400 community. We could have easily not done
this, and there is virtually no one in the OS/400 community that would
have been able to build it themselves, even with the code we contributed.
Most do not have a C compiler installed, and I had to write our own build
tools to build it since we do not have "make" or any of the other GNU
toolchain available on OS/400.

The point being we could have just "taken" Subversion and made it
available to our customers, but we felt we would get a better product for
our customers by widening the users that are using it, not to mention that
it makes it easier for us to have a credible relationship with the other
developers, which is equally important.

Mark

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Received on Wed Jul 19 01:29:55 2006

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