Question: What are the reasons to not branch?

- J.D. Meier, Jason Taylor, Alex Mackman, Prashant Bansode

Answer

Do not branch unless development team members need to work on the same set of files concurrently. If you are unsure, you can label a build and then create a branch from that labeled build at a later point. Merging branches can be costly, especially if there are significant changes between the branches being merged.

Merging requires one or more developers to execute the merge and sort out conflicts. The merged source must be thoroughly tested because it is not uncommon to make bad merge decisions that can destabilize the build.

Merging across the branch hierarchy is especially difficult and requires you to manually handle many conflicts that could otherwise be handled automatically.

Additional Resources

For additional descriptions of how to branch and merge in Visual Studio 2005, see “Branching and Merging Team Foundation Source Control” at http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms181423(VS.80).aspx

Last edited Jul 18, 2007 at 11:06 PM by jtaylorsi, version 5

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