Friday, May 11, 2012

What's in a Name? Checking Out in cvs/svn Vs git

In cvs/svn, "checking out" means getting a copy of the code/content with the intention of modifying later. (as opposed to "export"). The source is a version control repository.

In git, "checking out" means orienting a working directory (*not necessarily same as the workspace dir) to a repository branch. I believe either a branch needs to be created first or if master, a pull done 1st.

The key is which rcs best uses the correct verbiage at which point:
Imho, I choose git because it reminds me most of a physical library "checkout". Usually, there's only 1 copy of a book, & checking out means another person can't have it. [no, not private locks!]
I'm subjectively partial for the latter. :-}

- the semantic that makes the diff is that cvs/svn calls fabricating a book a "checkout" while git applies "checkout" at a later stage; binding a "book" to a workingDir: assuming u have just 1 workingDir.


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  2. I can understand the other usage like "hey, check out my free bible!" but if you use that historic usage, then the creators of cvs should have called it "export" instead of "check out"; because one does *not need to return a free bible.