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From Adam Kocoloski <>
Subject Re: Avoiding updating a doc's _rev if nothing changed
Date Thu, 15 Oct 2009 15:05:49 GMT
On Oct 15, 2009, at 10:28 AM, Matt Goodall wrote:

> Hi,
> I think this is more of a dev question given that it needs some
> knowledge of the deterministic rev algorithm ...
> I was just wondering if CouchDB could use the deterministic rev stuff
> to avoid writing changes to the database if nothing has actually
> changed in the doc that is PUT back (or bulk updated, of course).
> The most obvious use case is that it's horrifyingly common for users
> to click an HTML form's submit button, instead of using the back
> button, when they haven't changed anything. I suspect most
> applications do not check if the user made any changes and therefore
> end up sending exactly the same data back as an update ...
> unnecessarily creating a new document rev, growing the database,
> invalidating views, and triggering _changes updates.
> CouchDB obviously has to calculate the hash for the new rev anyway, so
> perhaps it could compare the new value to the current value, skip it
> if it's unchanged and return the current _rev in the response.
> Is that feasible? If so, I'll create a ticket for it.
> - Matt

Hi Matt, it would easily be possible except for the fact that the old  
revision of the document is part of the content used to generate the  
hash that becomes the new revision.  So even if the body didn't  
change, the hash won't match the old rev.

I think it would be a nice improvement, and I honestly don't remember  
off the top of my head the argument _why_ the old revision had to be  
included.  So yeah, a JIRA ticket seems like a good idea.  Best,


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