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Subject: Re: A commit message template?

Re: A commit message template?

From: Dominik Riebeling <>
Date: Thu, 16 Sep 2010 17:37:24 +0200

On Thu, Sep 16, 2010 at 11:40 AM, Mohamed Tarek <> wrote:
> I agree in that it might indeed have an overall negative outcome (unless

I really don't see a problem here. In fact, I rather understand the
proposal more as a guideline on how to write your commit message than
a "hard" template you need to fill out. Basically, my understanding
means I do the following:

- run "svn ci" as usual and wait for the editor to pop up
- Type a short summary in the first line. If the commit itself doesn't
need much to say then that's the same as was commonly done before.
Just a "Correct whitespace errors", exit the editor and be done.
- If the commit requires a bit of description press Enter twice after
the first line, then write a more detailed message. That's also not
really different to what was done before -- the only difference is
that there is a summary in the first line.
- Tell my editor to rewrap the second line to fit into the 72 column
limit (unless the editor is configured to do that while typing
- done.

And seriourly, what's the difference when moving to git (as been
mentioned in IRC earlier)? Git is just a different VCS, it won't
change any problem with bad commit messages. Plus, git doesn't wrap
commit messages when displaying them so limiting your lines to a
sensible length is much more important there than it is when using svn
(and I wouldn't fight for a 72 characters limit on commit messages,
though IMO it's a good thing, especially for those people using

I'm really not convinced a tiny bit that using a template as proposed
by Daniel would even slow down committing. It's as simple as it could
be, and IMO using a more formal way to forumlate your commit messages
actually does improve them noticably. And even if it did slow down
each committer a couple of seconds for each commit I'm absolutely
convinced that it's worth it. Oh, did I mention the top-posting
analogy before? ;-)

 - Dominik
Received on 2010-09-16

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