How does AccuRev define "Revert-to-Basis?"

bbuttolph's picture
bbuttolph asked on February 21, 2011 - 3:25pm | Replies (2).

Quiz: At any point in time, Diff-against-Backed and Revert-to-Backed refer to the same version.

a) True. The term "Backed" is used by both operations to refer to the version you started with, meaning from the time of your last update or promote operation.

b) False. Diff-against-Backed refers to the latest version in the backing stream regardless of your last update or promote operation. The version you're diffing against could be a newer version in the backing stream.

The correct answer is 'b'. AccuRev uses the term "Basis version" to refer to the version in the backing stream since your last update or promote operation. Hence, there's the option "Diff-against-Basis" to use this version. However, there is no Revert-to-Basis. Assuming there is a newer version in the backing stream, if you Diff-against-Basis and want to have that version in your workspace, you must Revert-to-Backed. Huh?

I realize that Diff is an exception to the rule that all workspace commands are relative to the last update or promote operation and that a Revert-to-Backed using the Diff meaning would not result in what most users would want. However, when you're trying to explain the terminology to a new team member new to AccuRev, amidst the glazed looks and smirks you invariably wind up apologizing for the complexity and just hope that they eventually "get it".

Would simply changing the menu option Revert-to-Backed to Revert-to-Basis be the answer, or is there a valid reason for this inconsistency?


2 Answers

Tomas Lundstrom's picture

Considering that the CLI version of the 'revert-to-backed/basis' command is 'purge', I assume that they just had a bad day when they named these commands/operations... :-)


bbuttolph's picture
bbuttolph replied on February 27, 2011 - 12:25pm.

Don't forget the CLI Revert command which has nothing to do with Revert-to-Backed. Must have been a [i]really[/i] bad day. :(

Changing the menu option "Revert-to-Backed" to "Revert-to-Basis" would help move the definition of Backed towards the more consistent [b]'the latest version in the backing stream'[/b]. Basis would then strengthen in its current meaning as [b]'the version in the backing stream since your last update or promote operation'[/b]. How simple is that?

Ok, obviously AccuRev would have some work to do on the documentation side and whatever else is needed to get buy-in from their customers. But my guess is that this would be viewed as a welcome change by the majority of AccuRev users.

AccuRev needs to fix this so users can more easily understand their software. These are not infrequently used commands. Rather, they're used daily by folks who are just trying to get their work done, not become AccuRev experts. No developer should need a cheat sheet at their desk describing these terms per command in order to understand and use them.


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