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Re: Keeping last-modified dates

From: John Burwell <john.burwell.lists_at_galvnews.com>
Date: 2006-08-29 23:00:30 CEST

On Aug 29, 2006, at 12:34 PM, Steve Fairhead wrote:

> However: any time I do anything as drastic as checking files out of
> a VCS,
> or reverting, or including a replacement file from a colleague, or
> otherwise
> messing with the data that make uses to do a build, I'd expect to
> do a make
> clean or a touch.
> This is pretty basic stuff. It's not a reason for a VCS to throw
> data (in
> the form of timestamps) away.

For what it's worth, I likewise hate seeing information destroyed. Is
it really up to SVN to accommodate make's behavior in protracted what-
if scenarios?

SVN is useful for all kinds of projects and document-management
applications. I could make sense out of a checkout/update option that
uses the check-in date as the last modified date on checked-out
files, but a more intuitive default would be to preserve the file
exactly as it was checked-in, which would include available metadata.

I'd like to see date clobbering provided as an option for users who
spend a lot of time dealing with the issues presented by make. The
length and verbosity of the discussions on this list is clear enough
evidence that people without an understanding of the make problem and
its variants will likewise have no understanding of SVN's current
default date-clobbering behavior. If SVN is to continue being
promoted as a tool of versatility and flexibility, supporting the
most general use cases by not clobbering file modification dates
would be best, while allowing users with more specific requirements
to take advantage of the options as needed would maintain SVN's

If nothing else, the behavior and its reasoning ought to be explained
in the documentation so that it comes as no confusing surprise while
users are attending to development outside of a make environment.


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Received on Tue Aug 29 23:02:33 2006

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