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From "Xavier Hanin" <>
Subject Re: philosophical question
Date Sat, 23 Feb 2008 10:29:49 GMT
John already made a very good case for Ivy, so I don't have much to add. I
don't have any experience with trying to use ClearCase to do dependency
management, but I understand CM people having trouble to understand the
exact role of Ivy, since it's a kind of versionning system, and in some
cases you may wonder which versionning system to use (I recall a company who
where using Ivy to bootstrap their build, this could have been done with a
SCM too).

IMO Ivy shines in transitive dependency management, and this is a domain not
addressed by a SCM AFAIK. Dealing with conflicts in large dependency graphs
with different version constraints is not easy, and having a tool helping in
this area can really make the difference in day to day work with the system.

Ivy flexibility can also be used to cleanly handle some special cases. I
know developers who setup a simple shared directory on their box as Ivy
repository, so that other team members can easily try their own build of a
module without having to push it in the SCM. Sometimes CM people don't like
this kind of thing, but if you add proper tooling for it with appropriate
checks to make sure people don't push changes to the SCM when they are using
a private build, you can win some flexibility and it's cleaner than sending
jars by e-mail.


On Sat, Feb 23, 2008 at 5:26 AM, Shawn Castrianni <> wrote:

> I am trying to defend the use of IVY in my company and some CM team
> members are suggesting we use an SCM system to manage our dependencies.
>  They feel that IVY is trying to reinvent the wheel by acting like a
> versioned filesystem.  They say why not just check in all builds into an SCM
> like Clearcase.  Then the dependencies that you pick up can be controlled by
> the Clearcase config spec or view in other SCM tools.  You can label/tag the
> versions to handle build promotion status and other scenarios.  Another
> advantage is that you only have to check in what has changed.  With IVY,
> each new published module could contain nothing new versus the previous
> version but still takes up the same amount of space.  With an SCM tool that
> checks for actual differences before committing, would only check in the
> changed files.  The labels/tags would then be placed on some new file
> versions that did change and some old file versions that didn't change.
> Can people help me persuade my fellow CM team members why IVY is better?
>  They make a good case with their arguments.  Is there some showstopper
> scenario that an SCM tool can't handle that IVY can?
> ---
> Shawn Castrianni
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Xavier Hanin - Independent Java Consultant

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