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Consistent binary output from tool chains to minimize version control diffs (was: .NET assembly runtime images in Subversion ...)

From: Kenneth Porter <shiva_at_sewingwitch.com>
Date: Mon, 04 Aug 2008 10:51:10 -0700

--On Monday, August 04, 2008 11:00 AM -0400 "Parrish, Ken"
<KParrish_at_gomez.com> wrote:

> However, between two builds of the same identical source code (or so we
> believe), some .NET assembly DLLs will show changes in their binary image
> causing Subversion to detect a modified file and include it in the next
> commit. Introspecting the binary image of the assembly DLL reveals that
> in fact, there are only about 4 bytes in the assembly DLL that have
> actually changed and the assembly DLL is otherwise functionally identical
> to the previous version.

Any idea what these 4 bytes are?

IIRC, .NET assemblies include versioning which includes a build count or
timestamp. It may be this that's getting updated. You may be able to force
it to a specific value, but my brief investigation of this indicated that
one needed to build some code-signing machinery to enable explicit

To generalize the question, is this seen in other build environments? Does
gcc or the non-.NET Visual Studio, for example, build consistent binaries
from unchanging sources?

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Received on 2008-08-04 19:51:54 CEST

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