Version control systems

Manuel M T Chakravarty chak at
Sun Aug 17 22:28:03 EDT 2008

Ian Lynagh:
> On Fri, Aug 15, 2008 at 04:24:12PM +0100, Ian Lynagh wrote:
>> On Fri, Aug 15, 2008 at 05:09:55PM +0200, Thomas Schilling wrote:
>>> On Fri, Aug 15, 2008 at 4:38 PM, Ian Lynagh <igloo at> wrote:
>>>> One way that it is worse is that you will get a lot more "automatic
>>>> merge" commits when you pull changes from the central repo into a  
>>>> repo
>>>> in which you have local commits. I don't think that there is  
>>>> anything
>>>> bad about these, as such; they're just noise in the history. (I'm  
>>>> not
>>>> sure if it's possible to automatically rebase these away, or
>>>> something?).
>>> This is the use case for "git pull --rebase".  Instead of creating  
>>> an
>>> automatic merge commit, it rebases your local changes on top of the
>>> newly pulled changes
>> Hmm, last night the conversation went:
>> < nominolo> malcolmw: so i'm advocating "git pull --rebase" for
>>            that use case
>> < glguy_> rebasing can be less successful than merging when
>>          dealing with big changes
>> < glguy_> since the rebase happens one commit
>>          at a time
>> so I'm confused as to what the best practice is.
> We discussed this in #ghc, and the conclusion seems to be:
> If you have lots of local changes (e.g. the sorts of long-running  
> branch
> that gives darcs 1 problems), then you need to use merge. If you use
> rebase then you might end up with lots of conflicts to manually  
> resolve.
> Using merge gives you automatic merge commits, If you think these are
> ugly (opinion is divided on that amongst git people; I guess for GHC
> we'd want to make a global decision about that) then you can use  
> rebase
> when you have few local changes, and thus you are unlikely to get many
> conflicts.
> Using merge you also get a more accurate reflection of the project
> history, i.e. you can see that the two branches were being developed
> independently.

Sorry for being a git n00b, but does using merge mean that we need to  
use in-place branch switching (which you earlier said won't work well  
for ghc anyways)?


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