[cvsnt] Re: virtual branches ?

Matt Schuckmann matt at schuckmannacres.com
Mon Oct 17 17:33:02 BST 2005

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A few weeks ago I tried the magic branches, on the surface they appear 
to work but there were some problems when you dug deeper. I can't 
remember what exactly the problems were but they were significant.
I think it had to do with magic branches on top of branches or magic 
branches. Also I think that cvs graph and CVSView had problems with them.

I found that I wanted a way to float the branches on command.
I.E. At some point I'm ready to merge the main line code to my branch 
but I didn't want to actually create branch revisions for files that had 
changed on the main line but not in my branch I just wanted the branch 
to float to the head revision for those files.

It looks like WinCVS has a macro to do something like this but I haven't 
been able to try it because our old, old server doesn't support the 
options the macro uses.

Matt S.

Oliver Giesen wrote:
> Tony Hoyle wrote:
>>Prochazka, Jan wrote:
>>>Wouldn't be possible to specify at the beginning at revision 1.10 a
>>>"virtual branch" that would become real branch if and only if
>>>somebody commits to the branch ? Until that, any update of branch B
>>>returns HEAD of file F, because the real branch not exist yet.
>>Yes, that's called a floating or 'magic' branch (tag -M).  They're
>>not as useful as they seem in practice, but the option is there.
> Cool, I wasn't aware you managed to fix these. I remember trying them
> quite some time ago and they weren't really working at all and that was
> the last I heard or read about them since. Now after reading this I
> gave them another try and all went fine! :)
> Well, almost...
> With one file I got the following problem:
> cvs tag -M Magic-BRANCH test.txt
> [modify test.txt]
> cvs ci test.txt
> "cvs [server aborted]: Revision 2.9 is already locked by HQ\GiesenO"
> Could the problem be the forced revision number here? At least that's
> the only difference I was able to make out in comparison to the files
> where it worked. I definitely did not lock the file in any sense I
> could think of (i.e. admin -l, edit -x, -kx). Access was via :sspi: to
> a local 2115 server (using the same as client) and HQ\GiesenO is my own
> user name.
> BTW: What would you say would be the minimal server version requirement
> for using magic branches, i.e. since when are they "stable" (or at
> least since when are they in their current state)?
> Also, do you think there's any way to turn an existing branch into a
> magic one? What about the other way? Can I make it stop floating
> without having to force commit a (dummy) branch revision?
> Cheers,

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