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Re: Switching to git?

From: Pavel Roskin
Subject: Re: Switching to git?
Date: Sat, 22 Dec 2007 23:58:07 -0500
User-agent: Internet Messaging Program (IMP) H3 (4.1.4)

Quoting Robert Millan <address@hidden>:

Maybe you find interesting to know that I never use RCS (any of them) merging
feature at all.  I prefer to extract patches from RCS and manage them myself.
I often even manage branches by hand as well.

Just to clear any misunderstanding, extracting a patch and applying to another file is still merging. Unlike the 3-way merge, the patch command won't generate a merged file with conflicts that require manual editing. But more trivial kinds of merging will happen is the patch command considers it safe. Applying a patch cleanly doesn't guarantee that the resulting file will compile and/or work properly.

Some bugs caused by merging can be avoided like other bugs, i.e. by using sane programming and testing practices. Some bugs just need to be tracked down. That's just a fact of life. For instance, some code could be duplicated in one branch and fixed in another, resulting in one copy being unfixed. A patch could introduce a call to a function that changed its semantic after the base revision of the patch. Both can be prevented, but only to a degree.

Pavel Roskin

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