Suggestion: warn about file-name incompatibility

Eric Hanchrow offby1 at
Thu Oct 5 17:57:13 CDT 2006

Here's a summary of a conversation I just had on the #svn IRC channel:



        Error: Can't move
        'D:\klondike\db\SRAM\SYNC1040X16\SYNC1040X16_apo\CEL\.svn\tmp\prop-base\SYNC1040X16:1.svn-base' to
        'D:\klondike\db\SRAM\SYNC1040X16\SYNC1040X16_apo\CEL\.svn\prop-base\SYNC1040X16:1.svn-base': The filename,
        directory name, or volume label syntax is  incorrect

    What does that mean ?


    This is caused by the colon in the file name.  Windows doesn't
    like colons.  This is clearly a shortcoming in the svn docs --
    they should make clear that, if you're using a mixed environment,
    then file names need to be acceptable to _all_ client platforms.
    You should add a pre-commit hook that checks each "add" to make
    sure the file name is simple enough to work everywhere.  In the
    meantime, rename that file so that it doesn't contain a colon:
    "svn mv svn://bad/file:name svn://better/file-name"

I've never heard of anyone encountering this problem before, so it
doesn't seem appropriate for a FAQ entry (after all, the "F" in "FAQ"
stands for "frequently").  But I think it's important that we document
this somewhere -- the guy I was talking to was _very_ frustrated, and
had wasted a lot of time trying to work around it in various ways.

Had his administrators thought to put in this sort of pre-commit hook,
or had he found the workaround, a lot of time would have been saved.

So: where can we put this information?

It is possible that with more experience and maturity Scorsese
will direct more polished, finished films ...
        -- Roger Ebert, 1969

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