Usefulness of Subject-header of git commit mails

Boudewijn Rempt boud at
Sun Jan 23 21:53:48 GMT 2011

On Sunday 23 January 2011, Milian Wolff wrote:
> 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: $pretty=online
> Example:
> [KDevPlatform] fafd165: Don't completely ignore the retrieved top-context
> This is how they are formatted now (or well - again, apparently this format 
> was used in SVN as well):
> After: "svn-way"
> [$repo/$branch] $min-path
> where $min-path is the common path of *all* changed files, e.g.:
> Example:
> [kdevelop/4.2] /
> or
> [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 
> information.
> 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

To me, the short sha is useless, and the cut-off bit of the commit message doesn't tell me anything useful either. I use the path to filter on which part of calligra a commit touches, so it's useful for me. And I use the sender to order messages when I write a last-week-in-krita. 

So for me, the new format was very welcome.

Boudewijn Rempt |,

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