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Version Control with Subversion, 2nd Edition by Brian W. Fitzpatrick, Ben Collins-Sussman, C. Michael Pilato

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Breaking and Stealing Locks

A repository lock isn’t sacred—in Subversion’s default configuration state, locks can be released not only by the person who created them, but by anyone. When somebody other than the original lock creator destroys a lock, we refer to this as breaking the lock.

From the administrator’s chair, it’s simple to break locks. The svnlook and svnadmin programs have the ability to display and remove locks directly from the repository. (For more information about these tools, see An Administrator’s Toolkit.)

$ svnadmin lslocks /var/svn/repos
Path: /project2/images/banana.jpg
UUID Token: opaquelocktoken:c32b4d88-e8fb-2310-abb3-153ff1236923
Owner: frank
Created: 2006-06-15 13:29:18 -0500 (Thu, 15 Jun 2006)
Expires: 
Comment (1 line):
Still improving the yellow color.

Path: /project/raisin.jpg
UUID Token: opaquelocktoken:fc2b4dee-98f9-0310-abf3-653ff3226e6b
Owner: harry
Created: 2006-02-16 13:29:18 -0500 (Thu, 16 Feb 2006)
Expires: 
Comment (1 line):
Need to make a quick tweak to this image.

$ svnadmin rmlocks /var/svn/repos /project/raisin.jpg
Removed lock on '/project/raisin.jpg'.
$

The more interesting option is to allow users to break each other’s locks over the network. To do this, Sally simply needs to pass the --force to the svn unlock command:

$ svn status -u M 23 bar.c M O 32 raisin.jpg * 72 foo.h Status against revision: 105 $ svn unlock raisin.jpg svn: 'raisin.jpg' is not locked in this working copy $ svn info raisin.jpg | grep URL URL: http://svn.example.com/repos/project/raisin.jpg ...

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