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Re: Lack of Subversion repository recovery tools

From: <david.x.grierson_at_jpmorgan.com>
Date: 2007-06-29 17:26:47 CEST

Toby wrote:
> On 29-Jun-07, at 11:35 AM, david.x.grierson@jpmorgan.com wrote:
> > ...
> > check-state against the FSF database to ensure that it's in a
> > consistent
> > state - and knew what kind of common issues might exist and what the
> > regular fixes for those might be.
> And this is why I single out "software causes", because if you KNOW
> what the common "issues" are, THEY GET FIXED, and the administrative
> remedy is to install the fix. Additionally, in the case of a known
> bug, it may be possible to characterise the damage caused, and make a
> tool (if necessary) to repair this *specific* damage.

Except that upgrading is time costly (testing, validation, arranging
downtime, etc. etc.) and so some organisations (e.g. investment banks) are
upgrade unfriendly so keeping on the latest & greatest isn't always an

Consider the following scenario: Let's say you're running version 1.4.7
and the latest version is 1.5.3.

1.4.7 contains a defect which under certain circumstances can cause the
repository to become corrupted.

This defect was identified in version 1.4.8 but wasn't actually fixed
until version 1.5.0 because it required a re-design of aspects of the
repository format which wouldn't have been appropriate to issue in a point
release of the product.

If an organisation were to experience this corruption whilst running 1.4.7
- what should they do?

Option A) Upgrade their servers to (at least) 1.5.0 to get the defect fix
and go through all of the pain associated with the upgrade (testing of all
new features, dump/load of repositories, etc. etc.)

Option B) Have a fixer tool included in version 1.4.8 which understands
repository formats which may experience this corruption (or downloadable
as a support tool for circumstances such as these).

I'd say it's more mature for any SCM vendor (be they open-source,
commercial or otherwise) to acknowledge such an issue, release a tool
which can repair any damage which *could* occur while they work on a full


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Received on Fri Jun 29 17:27:22 2007

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