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Re: Subversion Problem - How to save file modify time?

From: Mark Phippard <markphip_at_gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2008 11:45:03 -0400

On Fri, Jul 11, 2008 at 11:37 AM, Ben Collins-Sussman
<sussman_at_red-bean.com> wrote:
> Given that we've allowed a user to maintain a branch for this feature
> for *years* -- without allowing him to merge the feature -- our
> actions speak louder than words!
> I'm fine for reopening the debate; we should first examine why
> exactly we've kept this branch in stasis for so long. If we don't
> like the design, what would a better design be?

Having used other version control systems that have this feature, I
always thought Subversion should have it too. My problem with this
has always been the design. I do not think you can do this feature
properly on top of Subversion's repository today.

Using a versioned property sucks. That means you have to carry around
the property information in the working copy and every commit in
theory needs to update it. This fouls log and diff etc..

In theory revision properties could be used, but do we really want an
import of 10,000 files sticking all of that data into revision
properties? In addition, we do not have any great ways to access that
data and it would add a lot of extra overhead during checkout/update
operations to go find this information in the revision properties.

To me, both of these problems are also why it is bogus to tell users
this is something they can do themselves using scripts or their own
clients. That really is not true because we do not provide an
adequate way to store this information.

I think this should be on our list for 2.0 so that there could be a
way to accommodate this information in the repository design. I think
the repository should gather and store this information regardless as
to whether the user wants it or not. The bit that should be exposed
to the user as an option would be whether or not to update the mtime
in the working copy on checkout/update. This is more or less how the
tools that have this feature seem to do it.

Mark Phippard
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Received on 2008-07-11 17:45:34 CEST

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