[development] Git best practices for client codebases

larry at garfieldtech.com larry at garfieldtech.com
Tue Mar 1 16:13:10 UTC 2011

I think the question is more about non-custom dev history; there's 
little need for a client site to have the complete development history 
of Drupal 4.3 in its repo, for instance.

Lately, what I've been doing/advocating is using Drush and real releases 
to download stuff from Drupal.org (core, contrib modules, etc.) and then 
checking the whole site into Git.  If I update a module, I use Drush for 
that and then update the code in my Git repo.  Then deploy to production 
using *my* git repo (which has my full dev history but not every commit 
in every one of my projects ever) and tags.

That keeps me on real releases, avoids unnecessary repository bloat, but 
still gives me a full history of all work on that project specifically.

--Larry Garfield

On 3/1/11 1:56 AM, Sam Boyer wrote:
> I tend to advocate full clone. You're talking about a task that version
> control is designed for. Now that we've made the switch, IMO native
> code:Git::bytecode:another VCS, or worse, patch stacks, etc. I don't
> know what drush did before to "make this easy" - maybe pop off patch
> stacks, update the module, then re-apply the patches? Fact is, though,
> nothing Drush could have done under CVS can compare to patching with
> native Git commits: your patches can speak the same language as upstream
> changes, and you have all of Git's merge&  rebase behavior at your
> fingertips to reconcile them.
> There are some occasional exceptions to this, but I really do think it's
> a bit daft not to keep the full history. Keeping that history means
> peace of mind that your patches (now commits) can be intelligently
> merged with all changes ever made to that module for all time, across
> new versions, across Drupal major versions...blah blah blah. Trading a
> few hundred MB of disk space for that is MORE than worth it.
> cheers
> s
> On 2/28/11 10:56 AM, Marco Carbone wrote:
>> Since a Git clone downloads the entire Drupal repository, the Drupal
>> codebase is no longer so lightweight (~50MB) if you are using Git,
>> especially as if you clone contrib module repositories as well.
>> With CVS, our usual practice with clients was to checkout core and
>> contrib using CVS, so that we can easily monitor any patches that have
>> been applied, so that they wouldn't be lost when updating to newer
>> releases.  (Drush makes this particularly easy.) This is doable with Git
>> as well, but now there seems to be the added cost of having to download
>> the full repository. This is great when doing core/contrib development,
>> but not really necessary for client work. This is unavoidable as far as
>> I can tell, but I don't think I'm satisfied with the "just use a tarball
>> and don't hack core/contrib" solution, especially when patches come into
>> play.
>> Is there something I'm missing/not understanding here, or does one just
>> have to accept the price of a bigger codebase when using Git to manage
>> core/contrib code? Or is managing core/contrib code this way passe now
>> that updates can be done through the UI?
>> -marco////

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