[Top][All Lists]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: SVN' "complexity" :)

From: Blake McBride
Subject: Re: SVN' "complexity" :)
Date: Fri, 26 May 2023 08:30:17 -0500

Here is the thing for me.  In the beginning, I read a little bit about subversion.  Its model, at least from a user's perspective, was simple and straightforward.  I was able to make use of it immediately.  As my needs expanded, I found simple solutions with subversion.  I never got caught up in a knot.

When GIT came out, I too was excited about using this great new tool.  Getting the basics down was easy, and I got it all up and running trivially.  However, as I used it, I sometimes needed to do something a little less common, or I needed information out of the repo that I had difficulty finding.  I read several books on the topic.  It seems that at its heart, GIT is a key/value pair database.  Try as I might, I could not reconcile the theory with its use.

When I got myself in a mess with GIT, I requested help from the local "GIT expert."  However, more often than not, they couldn't figure it out either.

I have owned a few software companies over the years.  In the more recent (20) years, I've always used subversion.  It is simple to understand and does what I need.

Many times I have done work for other companies.  Especially in the last 15 years or so, everyone seems to use GIT.  And during that time, in every case I can think of, I've had problems with GIT.

Given this experience, I have asked several people why they use GIT.  Although I get a variety of answers at first, when I probe deeper, the answer always seems to be "because everyone else is using it!"

So, my conclusion is the following.  If you work for others and want to maximize your opportunities, it's best to use GIT because that's what they're hiring for.  However, if you own your own business and need a practical solution that does the job with minimum expense and hassle, you use subversion.


On Fri, May 26, 2023 at 7:29 AM vvs <vvs009@gmail.com> wrote:
On 5/26/23, Dr. Jürgen Sauermann <mail@jürgen-sauermann.de> wrote:
> I would like to share another anecdote with you.

Thanks for sharing. Now we have some experience in common and not only
in technology ;) Sorry that it happened to you. I believe that such
society is broken, but that's another matter.

Git has a distributed store. That means that every user has a server
of their own. What happened on your server will be therefore
replicated to others. But they are not obliged to get your changes,
that's part of a project workflow. In your case this is what your
company did by requiring that all employees should commit into the
same branch. That's fine as long as there are only few trusted parties
which wasn't actually the case. It wasn't you who should be fired, but
it's your manager who certainly should.

So, I think that your mistrust in Git is actually misdirected. You
shouldn't trust your company' workflow here, that's what was broken.
Consider what might happen if they would put inexperienced admin to
maintain your company' SVN server? What if he would corrupt it'
repository? Should SVN be held responsible? BTW, in your case it was
just a matter of reverting that single bad commit, the repository was
actually intact and safe. The data were not lost due to a mistake!

BTW, I did put "complexity" in quotes and added an emoji to indicate
that an irony was intended. I don't think that SVN is too bad, it was
my own inexperience that got me in trouble.

P.S. There are big projects that use hundreds of short living branches
to coordinate work of dozens of developers for many years. They have
huge repositories and a good workflow. Git saves them expensive
storage space, valuable time and network traffic in their work. It
makes a one-time contribution very easy for volunteers. Check out
NixOS for example. But it's not a silver bullet and it can't prevent
shooting yourself in the foot. Neither could Subversion or any other

Have a nice day

reply via email to

[Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread]