Polarion Software is donating the subversion.com domain name to the Subversion Corporation, a non-profit stewardship organization created to support the development of Subversion. Subversion is a popular open source version control package widely seen as the successor to CVS. The announcement will be made at the SubConf 2007 conference in Munich tomorrow. It ends a three year spat between Polarion, makers of commercial software built on Subversion, and the core developers of Subversion itself.
Karl Fogel, co-creator of Subversion and president of the Subversion Corporation, and Frank Schröder, CEO at Polarion, met before the conference today to sign the papers. "On behalf of the Subversion project," said Fogel, "I wish to thank Polarion for their constructive engagement with the Subversion Corporation and for supporting the long-term interests and growing community around Subversion." Schröder added, "With the formation of The Subversion Corporation, it now makes sense for that body, which represents the open source Subversion community, to take over the subversion.com domain and move forward on related website projects."
Polarion's Subversion-related open source projects will be relocated to tigris.org, where the Subversion project itself is currently hosted. Polarion will use polarion.com and .org, while the Subversion Corporation will use subversion.com and .org.
Polarion and the Subversion community were in the news last year when they clashed over competing projects to create a Subversion plug-in for Eclipse. Polarion proposed their plug-in, called Subversive, to be an official Eclipse project. At about the same time, a project for a community-developed plugin called Subclipse was also proposed. Developers on both sides traded barbs for months on sites like EclipseZone. Eventually, Subversive was approved as an Eclipse technology project, though development of both plug-ins continues. According to a Polarion spokesman, the domain name announcement "doesn't have anything to do" with trying to reconcile the two plug-in projects.
One of the features that differentiated Subversive was its close reliance on TMate's SVNKit library to access Subversion repositories. SVNKit is written in Java (like the Subversive plug-in) so tends to be faster and more stable than the JNI-based JavaHL library favored by Subclipse. However, due to licensing problems with SVNKit, Subversive now defaults to using JavaHL. If you want to use it with SVNKit, you have to get a separate download. Today's agreement isn't likely to change that.