Appendix B. Perforce Terminology and P4 Commands

Perforce has been a player in the software development world for 10 years now. Its first user interface was P4 , the Perforce Command-Line Client. To this day, P4 remains the canonical interface to the Perforce Server. Some P4 command terminology is anchored deep in the server and dates back to the earliest versions of Perforce. Some has been updated to reflect new environments and tools with which Perforce is used. The total effect is not always consistent; Perforce terminology and P4 commands are, admittedly, a bit confusing.

This appendix explains the terms that seem to be the most confusing, and within each explanation, lists the P4 commands that are related to them.

“Submit” and “check in "

In Perforce, submit and check in mean the same thing. We usually say submit because the P4 submit command checks files in to the repository.

“Changelist” and “change”

A changelist , in Perforce, is a collection of files submitted together. In the earliest versions of Perforce, the term changelist didn’t exist. The concept did exist, however, and its corresponding database object was called a change. When that proved difficult to document in clear English, the term changelist was introduced, although the early terminology persists in the Perforce Server. In this book, change and changelist are often used interchangeably.

  • The P4 change command doesn’t change files. It allows you to define a changelist.

  • The submit command submits ...

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