[Moin-user] RCS for historical page versions?

Douglas Alan nessus at mit.edu
Tue Oct 11 12:51:48 EDT 2005

Antonios Christofides <anthony at itia.ntua.gr> wrote:

> Douglas Alan wrote:
> > Is there a way to make MoinMoin use RCS (or something like it) for
> > historical page versions?

> AFAIK there isn't.  I was quite shocked when I understood how it saves
> the files, but one of the developers explained that they had their
> reasons.  RCS has problems (and I happen to be a twiki administrator
> and I've gone through some RCS-related headaches).

I'm not sure what you mean by "RCS has problems".  I've used it for more
than 15 years without any problems whatsoever.

> He said that CVS works well because of some subtle differences between
> the way cvs and wikis work.  So MoinMoin uses what it uses for
> simplicity and reliability.

Indeed, CVS would certainly not be appropriate for wiki pages, as (1) it
is designed for checking in entire directories, not individual files,
and a wiki page is an individual file, and (2) CVS is just layered on
RCS anyway, so you'd still be using RCS anyway.

> I think, of course, that disk consumption must be shocking.  The good
> news is that the compressed size must be about the same as if RCS was
> used, meaning that it shouldn't make backup too difficult.

I don't know why you say that "the compressed sized must be about the
same as if RCS was used".  RCS doesn't do compression -- it stores old
versions as file diffs, which means a very small change to a file ends
up taking up very little space.  Using compression might make a bunch of
files a half the size that they would be without compression, but using
RCS might make a thousand files take up one five hundredth the amount of
space, not one just one half.  If you then gzip the RCS file, it might
get compressed in half again.


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