Multi-user Review with Version Control

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Tony Starbuck
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Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:17 pm

Multi-user Review with Version Control

Unread post by Tony Starbuck » Tue May 19, 2020 8:06 am

As noted in another thread, I'm new to H&M, so please be gentle... I've read the parts of the manual that seem relevant and don't have a solution to this.

In our scenario I've been writing content into H&Mv8. I save and close H&M, then from Windows I commit to a Subversion repo. Someone else updates from the repo, opens the project, and does a build for deployment. He will make small changes, and repeat the process - save, close, commit. I update, open, and continue...

When working with a version control system, we get a diff on the markup, not the rendered content. This makes it extremely difficult to note changes.

Question 1 : I think I'm missing something, but is there a way to Review in H&M in this environment, where we can see changes made by someone else more elegantly, as in Word Change Tracking? ( Gosh I hope I didn't just baspheme... )

Question 2 : I tried the version control in H&M but either the docs are wrong or outdated. The doc says use CollabNET's SVN. That version is old. To use the old version of CollabNet SVN that's available, and follow the doc which says TortoiseSVN needs to use that, I had to downgrade my TortoiseSVN. I wasn't comfortable with that. But with that in place, reboots, and other such housekeeping, it wasn't working. Pointing H&M at the folder for the executables and binaries, it simply didn't see the files. (I'm sorry I'm being vague about this, I had to uninstall all of that to get back to my normal environment, so I don't have the folders and file names in front of me.) My colleague, noted above, said it's OK to use the current TortoiseSVN. I tried that, still no joy.

Question 3 : Is there a plan to support the Apache SVN rather than CollabNet? From the documentation at Apache and CollabNET, they say the code is virtually identical. I'm wondering if the references to CollabNet are just old and not important.

Question 4 : Am I dealing with a known issue? If so, I'm happy to just continue as we do and wait for a change whenever it happens.

Question 5 : Is there some documentation that will get us over the hump with the latest H&M, latest ApacheSVN, latest TortoiseSVN?

Question 6 : Given all of this, is there a clear, perhaps documented way to do better what we're trying to do? I'd much rather work with the product than around it.

Thanks!

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Tim Green
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Re: Multi-user Review with Version Control

Unread post by Tim Green » Tue May 19, 2020 11:39 am

Hi Tony,
Question 1 : I think I'm missing something, but is there a way to Review in H&M in this environment, where we can see changes made by someone else more elegantly, as in Word Change Tracking? ( Gosh I hope I didn't just baspheme... )
No blasphemy at all. It's a reasonable request and one of the most frequent ones that can't really be satisfied. I'm afraid that Help+Manual doesn't have that kind of change tracking and it's not going to be coming any time soon. It's a basic problem that can't be overcome easily, particularly not in combination with version control. Annoying, but there's no way around it at the moment. Sorry about that... :?
Question 2 : I tried the version control in H&M but either the docs are wrong or outdated.
Unfortunately, they're not. The problem here is that Help+Manual is a 32-bit program and Tortoise no longer includes the 32-bit runtimes needed for communication with SVN on 64-bit Windows. Those are only available from Collabnet at the moment, and Collabnet is always a couple of generations behind with this because...well, I guess you have to ask them about that. :roll:

What this means at the moment is that if you want the integration within Help+Manual you need to first install the currently available Collabnet 32-bit runtimes and then install or downgrade Tortoise to the matching version. Your SVN server can be newer, that isn't a problem, but Tortoise and the 32-bit runtimes must have the same version.
Question 3 : Is there a plan to support the Apache SVN rather than CollabNet? From the documentation at Apache and CollabNET, they say the code is virtually identical. I'm wondering if the references to CollabNet are just old and not important.
No, they're not old and they are crucially important. We are currently working on including our own packaged version of the original Apache SVN DLLs but that is a very non-trivial undertaking. We hope to have it available as soon as possible, but I can't make any promises on that at the moment. We'll have to see if our developers run into any major roadblocks with this project.
Question 5 : Is there some documentation that will get us over the hump with the latest H&M, latest ApacheSVN, latest TortoiseSVN?
The documentation you already saw actually covers what you need to do. If you're not OK with using that version of Tortoise your other option is to turn off the internal SVN support in View > Program Options > SubVersion. Then you can use it passively: You pull your own local working copy with Tortoise, do an update on it with Tortoise before you start work and a commit with it with Tortoise after you finish. All you really lose is the ability to do your syncs from within Help+Manual, the display of the topic status with the overlay icons in the table of contents and the automatic inclusion of any additional files you put in the project folder in your commits.
Regards,
Tim (EC Software Documentation & User Support)

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Tony Starbuck
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Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2019 6:17 pm

Re: Multi-user Review with Version Control

Unread post by Tony Starbuck » Tue May 19, 2020 4:57 pm

Again, sincere thanks for taking the time to read and process each of my questions.
I completely understand the challenges. We'll be fine continuing to version-control from outside. And as far as reviewing changes, ouch such a pain, but we'll get through that as well. :)

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