ChangeLogs in commit messages

Pedro Alves
Wed Sep 10 10:58:00 GMT 2014

On 08/14/2014 01:52 PM, Joel Brobecker wrote:
>>   1. With paths and with the date-and-author header:
>>     gdb/
>>     2014-07-30  Gary Benson  <>
>>             * btrace.c: Include defs.h.
>>             * common/ptid.c: Include defs.h or server.h as appropriate.
>>             * nat/mips-linux-watch.c: Likewise.
>>   2. With date-and-author headers but no paths:
>>     2014-08-04  Tom Tromey  <>
>>             * gdb.base/sss-bp-on-user-bp-2.exp: Match "to_resume", not
>>             "target_resume".
>>   3. With paths but no date-and-author headers:
>>     gdb/ChangeLog:
>>             * amd64-windows-tdep.c (amd64_windows_frame_decode_insns):
>>               Add debug trace.
>>   4. With no preamble at all:
>>             * chew.c (print_stack_level, main): Cast result of pointer
>>             difference to match format string.
>> What are people's preferences here?  My preference is #1, but I could
>> live with #3.  If we come to some kind of concensus on this I'll
>> update the wiki to reflect this.
> #3, since date and author are often redundant with the commit's
> author. And even if not in the same, it's in the ChangeLog entry
> that should be checked in as part of the commit. Also, I feel
> like having those in the CL is an extra source of potential
> issue (eg: if forgot to update the date), and revision logs
> cannot be fixed once the commit has been pushed, whereas dates
> in ChangeLog entries can.

Because on git, email == patch == commit, I've now noticed that we're
now actually losing author info in patch _submissions_ because of
this rule and the rule that we don't post the ChangeLog diff.

E.g., I suspect this patch:

will end up with both Gary's and Tom's name in the ChangeLog,
but that's really just a guess.

This makes it impossible for someone else to push the patch
other than the submitter, because not all the info is there.

It's a bigger issue even if someone posts a patch written or
co-written by someone that might not have copyright
assignment in place.

I think author info must be explicit in patch submissions

Pedro Alves

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