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Re: Git commit messages

From: Daniel Golle
Subject: Re: Git commit messages
Date: Wed, 27 May 2020 09:28:43 +0100

On Wed, May 27, 2020 at 09:56:27AM +0200, Schanzenbach, Martin wrote:
> Hi,
> I just finished cleaning up the neglected ChangeLog. We all (mostly me and 
> grothoff) gravely neglected
> to update the file (no change since 0.12.1!) and it was quite a pain to go 
> through the git logs this
> time.
> In order to prevent this or at least make this easier in the future, it would 
> be great if we could from now on
> settle on the following convention regarding commit messages:
> A. Commit messages prefixed with "- "
> Whenever you commit a simple bugfix, indentation fix or followup commit 
> (forgot file etc) please
> add a "- " to your commit message.
> Example:
> "- forgot to actually add file"
> or
> "- indentation"
> B. Any other commit
> Please formulate your commit message in a way that makes it understandable 
> what component was changed,
> why it was changed and how. Possibly with an issue number if applicable:
> Example:
> "GNS: Added new record type BB. Fixes #4223"
> or
> "Buildsystem: Fixed build breaking with gcc-10"

Yes, let's please establish something like that. I've tried my best
myself, but that's like 0.000001% of GNUnet commits -- and of course,
as was pointed out in a previous debate on that, GNUnet is not the
Linux kernel and experimentation becomes very slow if you have to
write a novel on every single step you do...

Another aspect is me struggling with reviewing things for GNUnet
because often times I can see what a commit does but I have no idea
what it was **supposed to do**, due to lacking commit descriptions.
Also knowing whether a commit was meant to be purely cosmetic is nice
when reviewing. So maybe we can be a bit more differentiated with our
to be established language of symbols:
Let's use '- ' prefix for small fixes or follow-up commits, just like
you suggested above.
Let's use '# ' prefix for purely cosmetic changes (ie. not functional
changegs intended).



> I added a new script in contrib/scripts/
> which will allow us to more or less automatically generate ChangeLog entries
> from git logs by only including commits in the format "B" starting from the 
> last
> commit referenced in the existing ChangeLog.
> We should probably at some point add a section to the handbook where we can 
> detail commit message information.
> Thanks and BR

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