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

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Managing Repository UUIDs

Subversion repositories have a Universally Unique Identifier (UUID) associated with them. This is used by Subversion clients to verify the identity of a repository when other forms of verification aren’t good enough (such as checking the repository URL, which can change over time). Most Subversion repository administrators rarely, if ever, need to think about repository UUIDs as anything more than a trivial implementation detail of Subversion. Sometimes, however, there is cause for attention to this detail.

As a general rule, you want the UUIDs of your live repositories to be unique. That is, after all, the point of having UUIDs. But there are times when you want the repository UUIDs of two repositories to be exactly the same. For example, if you make a copy of a repository for backup purposes, you want the backup to be a perfect replica of the original so that, in the event that you have to restore that backup and replace the live repository, users don’t suddenly see what looks like a different repository. When dumping and loading repository history (as described earlier in Migrating Repository Data Elsewhere), you get to decide whether to apply the UUID encapsulated in the data dump stream to the repository in which you are loading the data. The particular circumstance will dictate the correct behavior.

There are a couple of ways to set (or reset) a repository’s UUID, should you need to. As of Subversion 1.5, this is as simple as using the svnadmin setuuid ...

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