So after trying to flex Git to use a huge software base, I’ve moved to Mercurial and am finding it really wonderful.

First off, windows integration is especially beautiful. You don’t need an extra shell, you don’t need Cygwin, you don’t need OpenSSH. It’s just a great experience in Windows. I’m also using TortoiseHg. TortoiseHg seems to be a better experience than TortoiseGit and they’ve paid closer attention to the collective dismissal of windows on pressing OK, an annoyance to me with TG.

Furthermore, UTF-16 files seem to be supported out of the box (probably because Hg’s written in Python). A project that I frustratingly tried to commit to a Git repo was a breeze with Mercurial due to the UTF-16 support. The way that Visual Studio saves files, you can’t be certain that UTF-16 won’t be the file format, but that is a non-issue for Mercurial, which eats ’em up with out a blink.

Lastly, support for massive code bases is a big win at my company where our source repo is upwards of multiple Gigs. Git’s premise that the Linux Kernel source is “huge” is utterly laughable. Mercurial swallowed up our code quickly and didn’t have any issues diffing changes and I didn’t have to go figure out creating sub-repositories to get better performance. This singular feature is HUGE to me.


2 Responses to “Switcher”

  1. 1 Ryan
    January 20, 2010 at 3:04 pm

    Ok, so git is a pain—then don’t use it on big upcoming super secret projects. Of course you’d have to winsomely convince your open-minded co-developer, but he is probably open to using Mercurial–but most likely is also excited about Bazaar http://bazaar.canonical.com/en/ . Dang, just when you thought you had it settled.

    Of course this is all just speculation from a random internet wanderer.

    Software Samurai

  2. 2 mrcaron
    January 20, 2010 at 6:06 pm

    Yeah, I’ve tried to use Bazaar, but I’ve had some issues on Windows. It’s written in Python, but it tries to do things specific to *nix, like create symlinks and such. Merc is just gravy for a Windows guy. Furthermore, Merc has the support of Google behind it. The code hosting is better (bitbucket is like github, whereas launchpad… meh). Bazaar seems to have a nice linux backing, but there doesn’t seem to be much visibility outside of the linux world.

    Secondly, for the record, I just set up Plink with sym-git for Windows and it’s ok, I got around the OpenSSH stuff. But when I can use Powershell + Hg + Plink on Windows, it’s a double score because I can then be at home on my mac and work with Hg with no problems.

    I know, these are problems local to Windows, but whatev’s. I’m a polyglot when it comes to OSs.

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