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Version Control : Open Source

I am looking for a open source version control system for Multimedia files (flash, JPEGS etc. ).

It should be accessible across different geographies and version control should have a web interface. The view interface for these files (flash, JPEGS etc  ) through a browser is important.

Do you know the best match for this requirement ?

Ramu Karyat
Tuesday, August 31, 2004

The problem with putting those types of files in version control is that binary diffs just plain aren't very meaningful. Pretty much every SCCS will handle binary files somehow, but I think you'll wind up with a complete copy of the file for each revision. If you have the disk space, you should be fine. I know CVS and Subversion can both handle binary files, and I've found them reliable enough for text, at least.

Mike Swieton
Tuesday, August 31, 2004

Binary diffs are possible. Subversion does them.

Brad Wilson (dotnetguy.techieswithcats.com)
Tuesday, August 31, 2004


Go with subversion and if you're on Windows, get Tortoise SVN.

Both are available from tigris.org

KC
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Subversion handles binary files. It stores only the differences between revisions, unlike CVS which stores a complete copy of each revision. However, as has been said, binary diffs aren't very meaningful. In fact, with compressed files like JPEGs they are particulatly meaningless.

You can inspect Subversion repositories with a normal web browser, and there's also a web interface (WebSVN http://websvn.tigris.org/ ).

We've been using Subversion for a few months and are very impressed with it. Recommended.

Tom Payne
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Besides the already mentioned CVS and Subversion, there is GNU arch: http://www.gnu.org/software/gnu-arch/

Vladimir Gritsenko
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

==>Binary diffs are possible. Subversion does them.

Possible, ut not very useful (except to save storage space) to a human. Go ahead. Look at the diffs on, say, a quicktime file and tell me how it's different?

FYI -- this is not a flame on Subversion. I like it. We've recently switched from VSS to Subversion and I like it a lot.

Sgt. Sausage
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

>> Possible, ut not very useful

It's easier to versionize pictures using the same tool as source code, instead of manually creating directories named after the date the files were last changed by the in-house graphic designer.

Fred
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

==>It's easier to versionize pictures using the same tool as source code, instead of manually creating directories named after the date the files were last changed by the in-house graphic designer.

Agreed -- that scenario would be a nightmare -- and you'd be surprised how many folks out there use that very method of versioning --  but I'm stressing the "not very useful" point based on the Diffs argument.  Humans looking at a binary Diff. Not very useful.

Sgt. Sausage
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Just this week I flipped a coin over source code management systems for a new project and decided to go with Subversion.

I've used CVS in the past and whilst it's good, it still has some limitations. It's easy to use with the WinCVS interface but I've since decided to use TortoiseSVN with Subversion because of it's simplicity and power. There's also a front-end call JSVN (http://jsvn.alternatecomputing.com/) but it looks a little alpha'ish for my liking.

Just one thing - having used Visual Source Safe on and off, does anyone else agree with me that it's the biggest piece of turgid dogshit that you could ever have the misfortune of using?! :-&

TheGeezer
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

For binary diffs, you might want to consider a tool which can write them to something readable. (I guess XML is the common choice, and it's pretty easy to convert from XML to something even more readable.) In that way, comparing binary versions is a matter of piping the versions through your tool.

It's just a good technique in general. I used it once for the flash vector format. Of course, I don't know if it's feasible for every binary file thing you do.. it won't necessarily help you to know that pixels x...y are now red, but certainly for some things it's important. Especially since binaries are only performance optimizations.

Tayssir John Gabbour
Wednesday, September 01, 2004

> Just one thing - having used Visual Source Safe on and off, does anyone else agree with me that it's the biggest piece of turgid dogshit that you could ever have the misfortune of using?! :-&

I haven't used VSS, but I can't imagine that it could possibly be worse than PVCS.

On converting images to text and back, have a look at:

http://sng.sourceforge.net/

The advantages of using such a tool are lossless compression (JPEG quality will degrade after a few save/load cycles) and sensible diffs.

Tom Payne
Thursday, September 02, 2004

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