[Bf-committers] introduction

Michael McLay mclay at mjmoi.com
Thu Jun 3 17:46:39 CEST 2010

On Thu, Jun 3, 2010 at 10:29 AM, Nathan Letwory <
nathan at letworyinteractive.com> wrote:

> On 3.6.2010 17:13, Ian Watkins wrote:> Lastly, have you guys used git at
> all?  With the many branches you've
> > made for SOC, and the commit policy, I'd think you guys would love
> > distributed source code management -- along with the ability to merge
> > less painfully.
> >
> No. I try to sync trunk to gitorious.org/blenderprojects though. And I
> don't think that a change of SCM will be done anytime soon. SVN has
> served us well enough and after a big CVS->SVN transition I don't think
> most of the users are longing for yet another one. Personally I'd like
> Git though.

I hope the Blender team is open to suggestions about how to improve the
project management activities. I agree with Ian that moving to a distribute
source code management tools has advantages. Merging is one of them. Another
is the ability to checkin to a branch when you are offline and then later
push the commits to the local copy of the branch back into the branch in a
central repository. The choice between Git, Bazaar, or Mercurial is a matter
of taste more than a matter of features.

A higher level discussion might also reconsider the choice of gforge. I
believe there is some disastifaction with gforge and alternatives have been
suggested. I don't recall the name. It wasn't Trac. I believe it was written
in Ruby. I wasn't reading the Blender mailing list when the decision was
made to move to gforge, but I would assume it may have been due to problems
with Sourceforge. That is a common reason for ditching Sourceforge. From a
project management perspective I would suggest considering a move to
Launchpad.net would. There are many advantages in migrating Blender to

   - Launchpad offer the free hosting convenience of Sourceforge, but with a
   much better UI and API and no advertising.
   - No Blender project resources would be wasted managing a gforge
   - The GUI to Launchpad is more advanced and feature-full than gforge and
   - Launchpad has an integral bug tracking tool that supports multiproject
   bugs and bug tracking in external

   - Launchpad scales much better than gforge. There is a huge user base
   (over 18,000 projects)
   - Launchpad has evolved gracefully and new powerful features are added on
   a regular basis.
   - There is solid financial support for Launchpad development from the
   Ubuntu project.
   - The huge user base and commitment of the Ubuntu project makes it a safe
   - Launchpad uses Bazaar, distributed SCM, has an command structure that
   is mostly a superset of Subversion. It just does a much better job of
   managing memory usage, and it has very good merge support.
   - It is possible to directly import a Subversion repository into Bazaar
   with no information loss. The converse is not true.
   - If you don't like Bazaar you can use VCS to remotely manage alternative
   repositories using GIT, SVN,...
   - The entire Launchpad data repository is accessible through a Python
   - They have an XML schema for importing bugs.

The biggest problem standing in the way of an easy and rapid migration to
Launchpad is the lack of a gforge-to-launchpad migration script for bugs.
There is a trac-to-launchpad
but a gforge reader needs to be written to move the old bugs to the Lauchpad
bug tracker. The Trac migration script is less than 1000 lines of code. Most
of the work would involve modifying the SQL queries used to extract data
from the Trac database to queries that extract data from the gforge tracker.

An unofficial Blender project is already installed on Launchpad. It was
abandoned by the originator of the project, so I asked to be made the
maintainer. I've done some work on updating it to reflect the releases that
were missing. There's a mirror of the Blender
svn<https://launchpad.net/blender>repository on Sourceforge that uses
the Bazaar distributed source code
management tool. Only the trunk is mirrored at the moment, but it would be
simple enough to add aditional VCS imports for all of the legacy branches.
If you have commit privileges to the Blender gforge repository I can add you
to the Launchpad bf-committers team. I'd be very happy to turn over the
maintainer role to one of the core Blender maintainers should you choose to
migrate to Launchpad.

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