Usefulness of Subject-header of git commit mails

Milian Wolff mail at
Sun Jan 23 19:43:42 GMT 2011

Hey all,

I've brought this discussion to the sysadmins recently and they asked me to 
ask for feedback here. So there it goes:

Recently, the format of the subject of git commit emails was adapted to use 
the old SVN format. This sucks in my opinion and I want to have it changed.

First lets explain how the git emails where formatted before:

Before: "gitorious-way"
[$repo] $short-sha1: $pretty=online

[KDevPlatform] fafd165: Don't completely ignore the retrieved top-context

This is how they are formatted now (or well - again, apparently this format 
was used in SVN as well):
After: "svn-way"
[$repo/$branch] $min-path

where $min-path is the common path of *all* changed files, e.g.:

[kdevelop/4.2] /
[kdevplatform/1.2] documentation

So why does this suck:

a) the path bears no information whatsoever. Esp. when it turns into '/' and 
this *does* happen very often. In SVN everything was one repo, hence the path 
was useful. But in Git everything is split into repos, so the path bears no 

b) I cannot use quick-seach features of common email applications, like KMail 
to search by sha/commit msg. I have to use the fullblown search dialog which 
is much slower to use to achieve such a simple task

c) it's not possible to prioritize commit mails for reviewing. I get tons 
every day and often only look at "urgent" mails, where urgent was so far 
mostly related to committer + short commit msg. This worked really well, now I 
have to look at all emails as soon as they come in and "mark as unread" those 
that I need to attend to later. This is purely workflow related, it does not 
mean that I never looked at patches with messages like "fix indentation" or 
"i18n fixes" at all, it just meant that I usually trusted them and only looked 
at them when I had the time.

So lets get up with a new format that would be perfect in my eyes:

[$repo/$branch] $short-sha1: $pretty=oneline

So essentially the old gitorious format just with the branch added, which is 
very useful.


PS: Lydia at least also said she doesn't like the SVN-style formatting as 
Google Mail is apparently too dumb and puts all messages with the same subject 
into one thread, making it nearly impossible to keep track of new commits for 

Milian Wolff
mail at
-------------- next part --------------
A non-text attachment was scrubbed...
Name: signature.asc
Type: application/pgp-signature
Size: 198 bytes
Desc: This is a digitally signed message part.
URL: <>

More information about the kde-core-devel mailing list