Multiple Repositories — Sumultaneously!

If, like me, you’ve been following development of Joey’s nifty new multi-repository tool and busily registering all your git and bzr and cvs and whatnot repos, you might have noticed a tantalising TODO item that’s recently appeared in the git repo:

* Ability to run commands in paralell? (-j n)

If done right, this could make an update of a lot of repos faster. If
done wrong, it could suck mightily. ;-)


Well, sucking mightily just means you need to prototype it first, so here’s a little add-on to mr(1) that runs multiple invocations of mr(1) simultaneously, naturally enough called mrs(1). Consideration of what that implies about superior multitasking is left as an exercise to the interested reader.

The implementation is slightly interesting: it’s a fairly simple perl script that first uses “mr list” to get a list of repositories to work with, then simply uses perl’s “open” function to run mr on each of those directories with the output piped to a filehandle. At that point, things get slightly complicated, since we want to keep them all running no matter what’s going on, so we have a select() loop that collects all the output into one buffer per command, which we put together later, and print out. And just for kicks, if the output ‘s longer than 20 lines, we pipe it through less after trimming out any ugly ^M nonsense we might have had thanks to progress updates or similar.

I like it, anyway. And happily, while “mr update” takes about fifty seconds for me, “mrs update” takes about ten. Fun!

(Joey: btw, it’s “parallel” :)