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Version Control with Subversion Paperback – July 2, 2004
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Next Generation Open Source Version Control
About the Author
Ben Collins-Sussman, one of the founding developers of the Subversion version control system, led Google’s Project Hosting team and now manages the engineering team for the Google Affiliate Network. He cofounded Google’s engineering office in Chicago and ported Subversion to Google’s Bigtable platform. Ben coauthored Version Control with Subversion, and contributed chapters to Unix in a Nutshell and Linux in a Nutshell.
Brian Fitzpatrick leads Google’s Data Liberation Front and Transparency Engineering teams and has previously led Google's Project Hosting and Google Affiliate Network teams. He cofounded Google’s Chicago engineering office and serves as both thought leader and internal advisor for Google's open data efforts.
C. Michael Pilato (Mike) is a leader in the Subversion community, anda core developer of both Subversion and ViewCVS. He is currentlyemployed by CollabNet, where he spends his days (and many nights)improving Subversion and other tools with which it integrates. Whenhe's not programming, Mike enjoys composing and performing music,freelance graphic design work, hiking, and spending quality time withhis wife and son. Mike holds a degree in computer science andmathematics from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Hemaintains a personal website at http://cmichaelpilato.com/.
Top customer reviews
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This is your book.
From beginner to expert in VCS, this view into the Subversion solution will be the only thing you need on your shelf (unless you need extremely advanced/complicated setups). The book covers the basics and general administrative techniques/skills required for your day-to-day needs. It also covers, quite well, the setup of the core system (daemon running, HTTP-cooperative running, tunneling, etc.).
Definitely recommended for everyone.
I would advice you to check a little bit about Version Control Systems first, since sometimes the books compares SVN with CVS. Also, if you are not developing anything by the time you read the book, you won't be able to fully experience SVN since most examples are for commands only (for instance, an example for svn commit, other for svn checkout).
However, if you had read a couple of articles about SVN and you are just waiting to get yourself fire up, this is a good choice.
The first weak point is the absence of installation instructions. The book tells you need subversion, but it does not say anything on what packages you need, what it depends on, or if you have to configure anything after you get the package. Who would have thunk that the subversion client package also installs everything you need to setup a server. There is no configure, or at least I did not think it was explained clearly that there is no such thing as configuring and installing for subversion (which would justify the absence from the book). For any person who installed a service, let it be Apache or an FTP server, you would know that you had to install the software and then configure some file in /etc. This is not how subversion works, and the book fails to mention that.
The second thing wrong with the book is its organization. I wanted to setup subversion, but that is in chapter 6, which of course assumes that you understood some of the concepts presented in chapters 2 and 3. Similarly, chapters 2 and 3 assume that you to have subversion installed (at least if you want to try out the commands yourself). There is however a couple of pages on how to get subversion set up in chapter 1, but without understanding chapters 2 and 3 it would be hopeless to try.
Besides those two points this book is a must for anyone wanting to install, administer, or learn subversion. The book is written well and the concepts are presented clearly.
The book is organized very well. It starts with an introduction to the software as well as the general concepts of version control. It moves onto a very useful - get started quick chapter that outlines the most common ways you'll use subversion in your everyday tasks. The downside to this is that, at this point you don't know how to set up a subversion repository in the first place, but it's a minor problem - and I think putting this stuff (checkin/checkout, import, commands to inspect the state of your files, the meat and potatoes of your svn usage) in a single chapter and tieing it together in a sample workflow really helps you understand the commands.
It then moves onto more advanced topics, like branching/merging, subversion administration and configuration, etc.. It also includes a very handy subversion reference which contains information on every command you can issue. It even contains a migration chapter for CVS users (and boy CVS users *need* to migrate!).
In all this is an excellent book, if you're like me and want to have a physical book, I definitely recommend getting it. Otherwise, it's at least worth your time to download the online version and check it out.