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Parallel Development Environments? Pulque!
Jan 25, 2010

¡Quiero pulque!

By Claire L. Evans / CC BY-ND 2.0

This is an updated version of Multiple Parallel Mono Environments.

What is Pulque?

Pulque is a collection of applications written in Ruby and Bash scripting to maintain parallel development environments.

Why does Pulque exist?

Three reasons:

  1. I need to keep multiple versions installed of the same software,
  2. I need to know what Version Control System is used by the software, and the most important
  3. I want to keep myself sane.

At work, I have to interact with different open source projects, most of them use Subversion and Git, but some others use Bazaar and Mercurial. Keeping track of the current parallel development environment and the VCS used by the software is exhausting.

You spend time focusing on something that shouldn't be that important:

  • Managing your parallel environments and,
  • Keeping track of the VCS used by the software

Is easy to get confused when interacting with the repository, for example, executing svn update when the software is stored in a git repository. Is silly, but it happens. Unless you are using an IDE that support Multiple Parallel Development Environments you will need the terminal to configure and build your projects.

Pulque helps you maintaining parallel development environments by:

  • Printing in the bash prompt the name of the parallel development environment and the type of the VCS, this information is updated depending on the working directory,
  • Defining aliases to the default commands used to configure and build the software project, to always prefix your projects using your parallel environment, and
  • Showing a failure or success alert when the command finishes.

Installing and using Pulque

Follow the instructions in INSTALL, or if you are using openSUSE 11.2:

OneClick Install
Click here to drink Pulque!

Don't forget to add the function pswitch to your .bashrc. Bash will autocomplete your environment name when using TAB TAB.

function pswitch {
  source /usr/bin/__pswitch $1

Read the USING file to understand how to use Pulque in the daily basis. If you find something weird or interesting please create an issue to fix it.


According to Wikipedia: "Pulque, or octli, is a milk-colored, somewhat viscous alcoholic beverage made from the fermented sap of the maguey plant, and is a traditional native beverage of Mexico."

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