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Version Control with Subversion
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Version Control with Subversion - Copying Changes Between Branches - Previewing Merges

Previewing Merges

Because merging only results in local modifications, it's not usually a high-risk operation. If you get the merge wrong the first time, simply svn revert the changes and try again.

It's possible, however, that your working copy might already have local modifications. The changes applied by a merge will be mixed with your pre-existing ones, and running svn revert is no longer an option. The two sets of changes may be impossible to separate.

In cases like this, people take comfort in being able to predict or examine merges before they happen. One simple way to do that is to run svn diff with the same arguments you plan to pass to svn merge , as we already showed in our first example of merging. Another method of previewing is to pass the --dry-run option to the merge command:

$ svn merge --dry-run -r 343:344
U  integer.c

$ svn status
#  nothing printed, working copy is still unchanged.

The --dry-run option doesn't actually apply any local changes to the working copy. It only shows status codes that would be printed in a real merge. It's useful for getting a “high level” preview of the potential merge, for those times when running svn diff gives too much detail.

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Version Control with Subversion
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