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Version Control with Subversion Paperback – September 30, 2008

4.4 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Book Description

Next Generation Open Source Version Control

About the Author

C. Michael Pilato (Mike) is a core Subversion developer, and a leader in the Subversion community. He is currently employed by CollabNet, where he spends his days (and many nights) improving Subversion and other tools with which it integrates. A husband and father, this North Carolina native also enjoys composing and performing music, freelance graphic design work, hiking, and spending quality time with his family. Mike has a degree in computer science and mathematics from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

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.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 2 edition (October 3, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596510330
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596510336
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #528,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By P. Webb on July 30, 2004
Format: Paperback
This first edition has numerous code errors in examples, and basic command listings. It is a total waste of time and money trudging through misprints. This book is 1month old and is already useless. For example if you followed the instructions in Chapter 2 as to how to create a repository, then followed the instructions on how to checkout you would Fail right away because the example command is missing a "/".... Small but high impact misprint!

If you're serious about stepping up to subversion, this book is licensed under GPL and as such can be downloaded for free from svnbook.red-bean.com.

My only regret with subversion so far is spending $25 to find out I could have gotten a much more error free version for nothing!
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Format: Paperback
If you are a CVS user, you need to immediately move to Subversion. CVS is damaged goods (no atomic commits, broken tags/branches, broken client/server, etc..). Subversion fixes all of this and takes it a generation further (WebDAV access, sensible branching, excellent diff'ing, etc).
This book does an excellent job of teaching the reader exactly how to effectively use Subversion. Whether new to revision control, coming from CVS or from some other RC system, the Subversion Book provides a very clear and often humorous guide to effectively deploying, administrating and using Subversion.
An excellent book.
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Format: Paperback
This book is an excellent resource for novice and experienced Subversion users alike. The first two chapters provide background on why subversion came into existence and general version control concepts. Anybody new to Subversion should carefully read chapter 3. The 'Basic Work Cycle' section explains the day-to-day use of Subversion well.

Chapters 5 and 6 have been invaluable in setting up our repositories. I particularly recommend people read the section on choosing a repository layout prior to setting up their repository. Setting up a Subversion repository to be served through Apache is more complicated than a local repository, but the 'httpd' section of chapter 6 clearly covers what to do. We now have a Subversion repository served through Apache that authenticates users with client-side certificates and encrypts communications over SSL.

Chapter 7 provided the information I needed to really get Subversion working exactly as I wanted it to. I have modified my config file to set what files Subversion should ignore and also what properties to set automatically. In addition, we have set up our projects so that they all have transparent access to the company's reusable code library using the svn:externals property (covered in the externals definitions section).

Appendix A is the place to start if you are an experienced CVS user making the transition to Subversion. There are a few significant changes that you need to be aware of.

The examples in the book use the command-line client, but Appendix D (Third Party Tools) provides URLs for the many GUI clients available, if that's your preference.
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Format: Paperback
If you want to understand subversion, this book will take you through all aspects and it will give you the knowledge you need to plan your own implementation.

The online version is good and for things you would like to have a better solution than what the book describes, looking them up in the current online book may show that the feature you wanted has already been implemented. However, the value of having your own paperback version cannot be overstated if you need to know the product well or you're responsible for planning an implementation of it.
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Format: Paperback
If you develop software of any type you quickly learn the importance of a good revision control system. Sometimes a minor change that fixes a bug at one point causes other portions of the program to have problems. Revision control systems allow you keep various versions of your program and go back to a prior version easily. If there are multiple people working on the project then the ability to commit changes and see what happens but easily get back to where you were becomes even more important. If you are writing a modular program then as each person or group changes their module you may need to get a current version of the project with a prior version of a module. A revision control system handles all these problems easily. Subversion is an open source version control system that can be used on any operating system that supports the Apache httpd server including Windows, Linux, and NetWare.

Version Control with Subversion is a highly useful book written with a slant toward the Linux OS. It is easy to read and understand if you are at least familiar with version control software at a theoretical level and is highly recommended. One really nice feature is an appendix covering the differences between Subversion and the popular CVS software. If you are used to CVS then this appendix makes the switch to Subversion much easier.
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I've been using Subversion for years, having migrated (like everybody else) from CVS. Since the Subversion interface is similar to CVS, I was able to make do, for quite a while, with the online documentation. However, when I found myself in a position of administering a Subversion server, I decided to pick up this book.

I'm glad I did. The book assumes you have no background in source code control systems and walks you first through the concepts of source control in general and then carefully maps them into the Subversion tool. Although this is probably an essential handbook for anybody who is going to administer a Subversion repository - and includes a ton of information specific to repository administration - I think it would be useful for the general Subversion user as well, even somebody with a good background in another source control tool like CVS or ClearCase. Subversion has its own, unique, means of managing branches and tags and I must admit that before I read this book, I wasn't that clear on how Subversion's branching and tagging facilities differed from the other tools I'd used.

I've been disappointed in the past by technical books written by the people who maintain the software, but in this case, the authors do a good job of setting aside the product cheerleading and explaining how to use the tool for your day to day work. Definitely recommended for anybody working with Subversion and a must-have for a Subversion administrator.
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