[cvsnt] Require Comment on Commit

Arthur Barrett arthur.barrett at march-hare.com
Wed Mar 21 02:30:29 GMT 2007

Is the comment "aaa" acceptable?

I suspect what you are actually trying to do is ensure that users
committing changes to the repository give some meaningful information
together with the change. Unfortunately if a user is inclined to not
supply comments - making the comment mandatory usually causes the same
user to start using comments like "aaa", "bbb", and "go away".

You can write a comprehensive comment analysis routine and call it from
the precommit trigger (which I have seen done).  You can ensure that
there are at least 7 words, check dictionaries and all sorts of other
lovelly things.  However anecdotal evidence shows that the same user who
used to not put any in comment, then upgraded to "aaa" will now simply
write a little program that extracts random paragraphs from "Alice in

On another group it was proposed that the only effective way of ensuring
that users enter useful comments is the liberal employ of a large stick.

Seriously though - there are times when no comment is really required,
and adding kruft is very rarely helpful.  For configuration management
to be effective there should however be a relationship between changes
and other things (like customer requests, project plans etc).  That's
why CVSNT has a -b and -B flag to relate changes to a tracking number
and why CVS Suite has integration with Bugzilla.  So whilst cvs ci -m ""
fred.c may be poor, cvs ci -B 1234 -m "" fred.c is much better.

Currently you cannot make bug numbers mandatory - but that feature
should be in the next release (2.5.04) in the next few weeks.


Arthur Barrett

> -----Original Message-----
> From: cvsnt-bounces at cvsnt.org 
> [mailto:cvsnt-bounces at cvsnt.org] On Behalf Of Network Engineer
> Sent: 21 March 2007 07:52
> To: cvsnt at cvsnt.org
> Subject: [cvsnt] Require Comment on Commit
> Is it possible with CVSNT to require a comment for the commit action?
> Thanks

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