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Using Subversion with eZ Publish

Friday 01 February 2008 7:35:00 pm

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Whenever I go to a customer site, I am asked how to organize a development project with eZ Publish.

My answer is always the same: "use Subversion".

This article will teach you how to use Subversion efficiently to manage eZ Publish projects.

What is Subversion?

Subversion is a source code versioning tool. This means that every time you change the code or the design on your eZ Publish site, Subversion stores the change as a "version". This enables you to revert changes to your site to previous versions, and also allows you to monitor and audit changes to your site through the log files that Subversion maintains for each file.

(Subversion is also known by the abbreviation "SVN"; both terms are used interchangeably in this article.)

This article is not an in-depth discussion of the Subversion tool. For more information about Subversion, refer to the Subversion documentation at http://svnbook.red-bean.com/en/1.4/index.html.

Why should I use Subversion?

Remember the first line in the developer's ten commandments:

  1. Use a versioning system

The biggest benefit of using a versioning system is that you can recover from mistakes by reverting to previous code versions. Versioning systems also help with bug hunting and troubleshooting, because you can compare different code versions to discover where the bugs crept in. With a versioning system, everyone's code is stored on a shared server, making back-up simple and preventing losses caused by individual computer failures.

Versioning systems are also very useful for project management. Each time you submit a change to the versioning system, a unique number is assigned to the change. These numbers can be cross-referenced with specific bugs or with project milestones.

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