[cvsnt] remove(delete) a revision from cvs

Arthur Barrett arthur.barrett at march-hare.com
Sat Jul 28 18:00:32 BST 2007

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> Sometimes you will submit something which you don't want to 
> submit to the 
> repository by mistake, exp: password of online bank(just an 
> example here to 
> show the bad result), my questions is: Is there any way to 
> rollback this 
> wrong submit? 

The point of SCM is to track the changes you make to file(s).  Your
example is a good one of showing when it is really really important NOT
to delete that change.

After a password has been published to unauthorised users, the password
should of course be changed.  Let us assume in this example that you are
not using any access control on the versions and therefore the password
stored in the SCM tool is considered to have compromised the security.
The solution to the security breach is to change the password.

Several days later someone tries to break into your online bank using
the published password.  This is repeated over several
weeks/months/years.  At some point in the future someone asks "why do
people keep on trying to break into our security using this password"?
If the SCM revision was deleted then there is no way to track what
happened in the past to lead to the present day situation.

And in a nutshell that is what CVSNT is supposed to help you do: track
what happened in the past to lead to the present day situation - whether
that be code, passwords, documents whatever.  Whether those changes be
good bad or ugly.  They happened and the fact that they happened may be
inportant for other people to know in the future.  Ie: just because WWII
was bad doesn't mean we erase it from the history books.

There is a "cvs admin" command that will let an administrator destroy
your SCM integrity by removing a revision, however it has not been
tested in years and there are various reports that it can harm the
repository.  This option should never be used except by an experienced
administrator who is aware of the technical and the process / security
implications of using it.


Arthur Barrett

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