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branching/development strategy

From: John Schmitt
Subject: branching/development strategy
Date: Mon, 26 Mar 2001 19:36:36 -0800

I was hoping this would be discussed on this list but I haven't seen it yet.

When you have a project that you're working on for several customers, what
do you do for frequent releases?  When do you branch and merge?  I've
scanned the open source CVS book (
but I didn't find any specific mention of this topic.

What we have been doing is making a DEVELOPMENT and a PRODUCTION branch for
each customer as we near the alpha or beta stages.  The programmers check-in
only to the DEVELOPMENT branch and the integration request person merges
specific requests from the DEVELOPMENT branch to the PRODUCTION branch.
Individual releases are tagged on the PRODUCTION branch from the builds that
the customer receives.

Are there more effective ways of doing this?  Pointers to archives, web
sites, or dead trees are welcome.


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