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A workspace is a collection of projects, where each project can depend on other projects in the workspace as if they were external dependencies, but don’t get locked in the lockfile. Workspaces are mainly meant for monorepos containing multiple interdependent Brioche projects, and are designed to make it easier to move code into and out of the workspace without needing to translate between normal dependencies and path dependencies.

A workspace can be defined by creating the file brioche_workspace.toml in the workspace root. The file looks like this:

members = ["projects/*", "others/foo"]

Each entry in members must be a subpath, which may end with the /* wildcard to include all subdirectories as members. Note that projects under the workspace directory but not included in the list of members will still resolve dependencies within the workspace, but they themselves can’t be imported by other members! Consider the following directory structure, where brioche_workspace.toml contains the contents above:

├── brioche_workspace.toml
├── projects/
│ ├── fizz/
│ │ └── project.bri
│ └── buzz/
│ └── project.bri
└── others/
├── foo/
│ └── project.bri
└── bar/
└── project.bri

When any project under this directory tries to resolve the packages fizz, buzz, or foo, these will resolve to the workspace member paths projects/fizz, projects/buzz, and others/foo, respectively. This means that these packages can refer to each other by name (as long as they don’t create a cycle), and others/bar can refer to any of the three by name (but no other package can refer to it, except by using a path dependency).

Unlike other dependencies resolved by name like this, fizz, buzz, and foo would not be included in a lockfile. If they were, then the lockfile would be regenerated any time any files from any of these packages were changed, which would would lead to extra churn in a VCS (e.g. Git).

The main use case for workspaces is for monorepos containing multiple Brioche packages, like the brioche-packages repo. In cases like this, we’d like dependencies to depend on each other by path. But, using path dependencies directly would require a translation step if code were to be moved into or out of the repo. So, workspaces offer a middle-ground, where packages act like path dependencies but are written in code just like normal named dependencies.