Watching an Annotated View of a File

With the command cvs annotate, CVS offers the possibility to see - for each line in a file - who has modified a line the most recently. This view may be helpful in order to find out who has introduced a change in the behavior of a program or who should be asked about some change or bug in the code.

Cervisia gives you access to this feature, but it further enriches the information in an interactive way. You obtain an annotate view by choosing ViewAnnotate.... Another possibility is to press the button Annotate in the Browse log dialog, in which you can select which version of the file you want to display. In Figure 4.3, “A screenshot of Cervisia's annotate dialog” you can see a screenshot of the dialog.

Figure 4.3. A screenshot of Cervisia's annotate dialog

A screenshot of Cervisia's annotate dialog

In the annotate dialog, you see in a window the latest version of the selected file (or the revision "A" version, in case you launched the annotate dialog from the Browse log dialog). In the columns before the text, you get some information related to the latest change in each line. In the first column the line number is displayed. In the second column you see the name of the author and revision number. Finally, in the third column you see the actual content of that line.

Consequently, when a certain line appears strange to you or you assume a bug there, you can immediately see who is responsible for that line. But not only that, you can also find out why that line was changed. To this end, move the mouse cursor over the respective revision number. Then a tooltip appears that shows the log message and the date of the change.