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Subversion Client Issues

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I use subversion, and won’t switch to something newer for a while, so it’s worth looking at how to polish that old hammer. I’m used to using the command line svn, or emacs. But recently I decided to try out a few of the nice GUI clients that are around, including Versions, ZigVersion and Cornerstone.

Of these, the only one that’s polished enough to lure me away from emacs and seems to support my favorite mode of working is Cornerstone, and it still gets it a little wrong.

I like to write log comments while looking at (and scrolling through) the diffs for the files I’m committing. This means I want a text field for writing log comments on the same screen as the diffs, that isn’t modal, and doesn’t stop me from moving around between multiple diffs.

As far as I could tell, I couldn’t get the comment field and the diff display shown together in Versions, and while I could in ZigVersion, that app had a subpar diff display and lacked polish overall, missing key shortcuts where I’d expect them, for instance. Cornerstone almost lets me do what I want, but it displays the comment field in a modal sheet, so I have to cancel to change which diff I’m looking at.

This is easy in emacs, but I like a nicer diff GUI. Am I just missing something? This feels like a natural workflow, so it seems strange that no clients support it well.

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