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Version Control with Subversion
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Version Control with Subversion - Versioning Models

Versioning Models

The core mission of a version control system is to enable collaborative editing and sharing of data. But different systems use different strategies to achieve this.

The Problem of File-Sharing

All version control systems have to solve the same fundamental problem: how will the system allow users to share information, but prevent them from accidentally stepping on each other's feet? It's all too easy for users to accidentally overwrite each other's changes in the repository.

Consider the scenario shown in Figure 2.2, “The problem to avoid”. Suppose we have two co-workers, Harry and Sally. They each decide to edit the same repository file at the same time. If Harry saves his changes to the repository first, then it's possible that (a few moments later) Sally could accidentally overwrite them with her own new version of the file. While Harry's version of the file won't be lost forever (because the system remembers every change), any changes Harry made won't be present in Sally's newer version of the file, because she never saw Harry's changes to begin with. Harry's work is still effectively lost—or at least missing from the latest version of the file—and probably by accident. This is definitely a situation we want to avoid!

Figure 2.2. The problem to avoid

The problem to avoid

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Version Control with Subversion
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