In Subversion, we've tried to erase a lot of the confusion between the cvs status and cvs update commands.
The cvs status command has two purposes:
first, to show the user any local modifications in the working
copy, and second, to show the user which files are out-of-date.
Unfortunately, because of CVS's hard-to-read status output, many
CVS users don't take advantage of this command at all. Instead,
they've developed a habit of running cvs
update or cvs -n update to quickly
see their changes. If users forget to use
-n option, this has the side effect of
merging repository changes they may not be ready to deal
With Subversion, we've tried to remove this muddle by making the output of svn status easy to read for both humans and parsers. Also, svn update only prints information about files that are updated, not local modifications.