Junio C Hamano <gits...@pobox.com> writes:

> Duy Nguyen <pclo...@gmail.com> writes:
>> Should the client side learn how to list hidden refs too? I'm thinking
>> of an extreme case where upload-pack advertises nothing (or maybe just
>> refs/heads/master) and it's up to the client to ask for the ref
>> selection it's interested in. upload-pack may need more updates to do
>> that, I think.
> What you are talking about is a different goal.
> Look at this as a mechanism for the repository owner to control the
> clutter in what is shown to the intended audience of what s/he
> publishes in the repository.  Network bandwidth reduction of
> advertisement is a side effect of clutter reduction, and not
> necessarily the primary goal.

As a separate and follow-up topic, I can see a future where we also
have .delayref (in addition to .hideref) configuration, that causes
the upload-pack to:

 * omit refs that are marked as "delayed";

 * advertise "allow-expand-ref=<value>" where the value is the
   pattern used to specify which refs are omitted via this mechanism
   (e.g. "refs/*" in your extreme example, or perhaps "refs/tags/"
   if you only advertise branches in order to limit the bandwidth);

and then a fetch-pack that is interested in fetching "refs/foo/bar",
after seeing that it matches one of the "allow-expand-ref" patterns,
to ask "expand-ref refs/foo/bar", expect the upload-pack to respond
with "refs/foo/bar <value of that ref>" (or "refs/foo/bar does not
exist"), before going into the usual "want" exchange ("ls-remote"
would of course do the same, and pattern-less "ls-remote" may even
ask to expand everything by saying "expand-ref refs/*" (where the
capability said "allow-expand-ref=refs/*" in your extreme example)
to grab everything discoverable).

That is _primarily_ for trading network bandwidth with initial
latency; as far as the end-result is concerned, delayed ones to be
expanded on demand are just as discoverable as the ones advertised

I think we'd want to have both in the end.  It just happens I just
posted the beginning of clutter-reduction one, as I think developing
both in parallel would be messy and hideref is probably less
involved than the delayref.
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