Intro to Tagging in Subversion

What are Tags?

In Apache Subversion, branches and tags are essentially the same thing: a copy of an existing folder and its contents, in a new location within the same repository. The key difference is the way the user handles these folders.

Tags should be used as “cold milestones” that provide a snapshot of your project at a specific point in time. Although a revision already acts as a snapshot, tags allow you to give them a more human-readable name (“Release 7.0” rather than “Revision 24973.”) Tagging also allows you to take snapshots of specific sections of the repository.

Why Should I Create a Tag?

Creating a tag uses the ‘svn copy’ command, followed by the section of the repository that’s being tagged, and the location where the new tag will reside. As ever, don’t forget to leave a log message:

svn copy -m “useful log message”(URL) (location of new tag)

In this example, we are creating a new tag called ‘Release1,’ by copying all the files currently in the trunk.

tags

Tip. Whether you are creating a branch or a tag, it’s worth putting some thought into your naming strategy. A coherent naming strategy allows others to get an insight into what development work is happening in which branch/tag, at a glance.

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