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Version Control with Subversion, 2nd Edition by Brian W. Fitzpatrick, Ben Collins-Sussman, C. Michael Pilato

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Implementing Repository Hooks

A hook is a program triggered by some repository event, such as the creation of a new revision or the modification of an unversioned property. Some hooks (the so-called pre hooks) run in advance of a repository operation and provide a means by which to both report what is about to happen and to prevent it from happening at all. Other hooks (the post hooks) run after the completion of a repository event and are useful for performing tasks that examine—but don’t modify—the repository. Each hook is handed enough information to tell what that event is (or was), the specific repository changes proposed (or completed), and the username of the person who triggered the event.

The hooks subdirectory is, by default, filled with templates for various repository hooks:

$ ls repos/hooks/
post-commit.tmpl          post-unlock.tmpl  pre-revprop-change.tmpl
post-lock.tmpl            pre-commit.tmpl   pre-unlock.tmpl
post-revprop-change.tmpl  pre-lock.tmpl     start-commit.tmpl
$

There is one template for each hook that the Subversion repository supports; by examining the contents of those template scripts, you can see what triggers each script to run and what data is passed to that script. Also present in many of these templates are examples of how one might use that script, in conjunction with other Subversion-supplied programs, to perform common useful tasks. To actually install a working hook, you need only place some executable program or script into the repos/hooks directory, which can ...

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