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Ask HN: Is Git an appropriate SCM for large enterprise software companies?
6 points by ghshephard 1682 days ago | hide | past | web | 4 comments | favorite
All of the large companies that I've worked at in the past 10+ years have eventually transitioned their SCM into either Clearcase or Perforce (usually Perforce).

The engineering VPs who make these decisions are pretty smart, and have a lot of exposure to SCMs, and are not unfamiliar with the advantages of DVCS.

Recently, a colleague took over a engineering management position at a smaller (300 employee) company that had decided to try and use git as their SCM. They currently have seven build engineers w/25 software developers, a ratio that is severely out of whack (My current org managed to get up to 100 developers with just a single build engineer). What's worse, is that when this manager asked to branch the tree, he got some pushback - the effort was not insignificant.

Git seems to work well when you have a small number of branches moving forward (linux kernel), but, for enterprises where you might have dozens of long-lived branches, each of which needs collections of fixes checked into all the branches - Perforce/Clearcase seem to be a better tool for the job.

Anybody else have a different experience?

I've used both git and Clearcase in a large software company.

The reason you'd go with Clearcase is for the tools and support. I personally think git is easier to work with but clearcase really worked well when your repositories got really large (250GB+) and you had long lived branches with customers needing specific fixes.

Although if you have 250GB+ of stuff in your repo, it might indicate more than just source files are getting checked in. An artifact management system might make sense.

http://archiva.apache.org/ is one example.

As an aside, I have had trouble with dll checkins from some of my developers, and git filter-branch worked wonders, but that's probably a bit off-topic.

You can't use git by itself to manage a large set of projects. Android uses Gerrit for this. Git doesn't do well if you have lots of large binary assets, but unless you're a game company you shouldn't have that problem.

Perforce is not a bad SCM. Clearcase is, though.

Yes. Next question?

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