Re: Distributed SCM in Gnome (Was: Git vs SVN (was: Can we improve things?))

On 9/12/07, Kalle Vahlman <kalle vahlman gmail com> wrote:
2007/9/11, Bryan Clark <bclark redhat com>:
> GNOME is not in need of a DSCM or any other kind of new SCM.  For source
> control, SVN works fine, just like CVS worked fine.  I'm not looking to
> argue the features of one DSCM above another or what we have now, but really
> the controlling of the source code isn't the problem this DSCM debate is
> circling.

The problem which prompted this debate again was the infamous SVN
accounts lag. DSCM allows people to comfortably work with "their repo"
and easily get a subset of their current work to a patch for
submitting to eg. bugzilla. Currently, you'd need to take a checkout
for each "line of work" you start unless you want to backup your work
manually with svn diff (urgh). Not so hot, specially since if you are
not on the net all the time.

If you can comfortably work without access to the central repo, the
need for the access becomes less of an issue. Thus helping people keep
patient with the accounts lag, possibly even making it unneccessary
for some.

So, in my opinion, GNOME does need DSCM as a *part* of the solution
for the current problems.

Yes, lets be clear that I think a DSCM is going to be an excellent upgrade to GNOME infrastructure, and from what I've read I think Git will do us well.  Switching from SVN to Git will help to dissolve part of the issues related to the SVN account creation but doesn't actually solve the problem.  There will still be a lag in account access, we'll still be missing visibility among ourselves and the work we're doing, are we going to have to initiate a request to create a new repository?; Git doesn't solve that!

Here's the original clip of Damien's message that I think started this spawn of the thread
Matthias requested an SVN account several months ago, and never got one.
When he went on IRC to ask for the account activation, people replied to
him that he had to make a new request and wait. One month later, the
account is not active yet. Matthias has been contributing thousands of
lines of code to Ekiga since several months, and I still need to commit
his patches myself. This is inadmissible.
Sure, you can argue that Git might allow for easier merging from one repo to another, but that's not the issue at all.  The issue is account lag.  There will still be a need for accounts on and the switch to a DSCM didn't solve that at all.  I'm not pushing to stop or slow down this switch, I think we should move to Git as it has a lot of advantages and I'm willing to try learning the new system so I can take advantage. 

I'm trying to stop talking the merits of Git.  If I could put on my GNOME Benevolent Dictator (GBD) hat on right now I'd say:

"Git looks like a good move, it's technologically sound, has the backing of a large community similar to ours, and will have lots of added benefits to our community because of it's distributed nature.  Someone needs to layout a plan for migration to Git, determine a specific time line for the change and the requirements needed to meet that time line.  Also, we will need to start making large changes to our developer documents and community access methods.  Someone needs to start designing a system for our translators to access our source code using Git.  Someone needs to help develop our account system (this is Mango, right?) around Git; I made some previous notes about it and Olav had comments, I believe that's a good start.  And finally someone needs to design ways for us all to have a next generation cvs-commits list, where we can keep accountability and community activity at the center of all our attentions; I listed some notes on that earlier. Go Go GO!"

~ Bryan

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