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Re: wacky/disturbing error message

From: John Peacock <jpeacock_at_rowman.com>
Date: 2004-04-13 04:29:31 CEST

Glenn Maynard wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 12, 2004 at 08:44:21PM -0400, John Peacock wrote:
>> You do know that a Message-ID is not useful _in any way_ towards tracking
>> that message in the list archives, don't you?
> Message-IDs are a fundamental means of referencing a message.

Not for humans, they aren't. Show me how to search on Message-ID, in any mail
archive, either for this project or any other list. They are only useful for
mail client to thread messages (by creating the References: header). There is
no guarantee even that the originating MTA will create one, to quote RFC-2822:

3.6.4 Identification fields

     Though optional, every message SHOULD have a "Message-ID:" field.
Furthermore, reply messages SHOULD have "In-Reply-To:" and "References:" fields
as appropriate, as described below.

> If you find messages like "REPORT request failed on '/svn/!svn/vcc/default'"
> and "Invalid editor anchoring" pretty clear, then you're ahead of me.

I read your original report backwards; at first glance I didn't realize you were
complaining about the second error, not the first. I agree that the 'svn
merge' message reveals too much of the implementation details, and not enough of
the human interface side. But "at least one of the input paths is not a
directory" seems like a good place to start figuring out the problem.

Bitching that "Fixing poor error messages doesn't seem to be a priority." is
unfair at best. This is an open-source project; if that error message bothers
you that much, fix the code.


John Peacock
Director of Information Research and Technology
Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group
4720 Boston Way
Lanham, MD 20706
301-459-3366 x.5010
fax 301-429-5747
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Received on Tue Apr 13 04:29:41 2004

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