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Re: [Gnu-arch-users] How does arch/tla handle encodings?

From: John Meinel
Subject: Re: [Gnu-arch-users] How does arch/tla handle encodings?
Date: Fri, 27 Aug 2004 13:05:06 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla Thunderbird 0.7 (Windows/20040616)

Marcus Sundman wrote:

| That is a good example of where the encoding of a file is part of that
| file's semantics. Of course no transcoding would be done for such
| files. (Some verification _could_ be done, though. Since all byte
| sequences aren't
| valid UTF-8 string it is particularly important for such files to be
| validated.)

If this really needed to be done, couldn't this be implemented as a part
of the Arch hook?

Well, it's better that it's done on the client than not at all, but if you want to ensure the validity you have to do it on the server. However, if you don't have to ensure the validity then you won't have to do any checking at all. Does that answer your question?

One big point of Arch is that it uses a dumb file-system as the "server", so everything *has* to be done by the clients. Now, maybe it could be added as part of the repository (or meta-data as you say) that this file needs to be in a certain encoding. But how much work is it to set these fields, or to change them, and how do you handle when a file changes encoding?

I know one of Arch's tenements is "don't change history", which also is close to "don't change the files". So that what is in the archive is what you had right before you typed "tla commit". That's why there is no $Id$ like in CVS.

It's kind of like, "Assume the developer knows what they are doing, because I could make things much worse if I mess up."


I think a project leader should be able to enforce such a policy for his own project.

- Marcus Sundman

Well, it would be nice to do something like this. But is it handled in any other revision control system? Obviously CVS doesn't, does bk, svn, aegis or any of the others?

As a more general solution though, what about some of the discussion about keeping arbitrary properties (like svn does). And then when Arch has a smart server, there can be server-side hooks. Your server side script can keep whatever meta-info it needs in the "properties", and can enforce anything it wants. It could enforce "every third character is an 'f')...


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