The following are common terms you will encounter in the versioning documentation:
The adds table stores all records inserted to or updated in a versioned dataset. It is one of the delta tables.
The adds table is also called the A table.
The base table is the core table of a feature class. It contains all the nonspatial attributes and, if using an SQL geometry type, the spatial attribute as well.
The term base table is used to differentiate this core table from other side tables, such as the delta tables, archive classes, or the f and s tables, used by the sdebinary geometry storage type.
When you look at a feature class through your database management systems's user interface, you can see the base table. For example, if your geodatabase contains a versioned feature class named prj_sites, you will find a table named prj_sites in your database. That table is the base table.
Base tables are also called business tables.
A child version is the geodatabase version that was created from a another version. This other version is the parent version. When initially created, the child version contains the same data and is at the same state as the parent version. After edits are made in the child version, they are usually posted back to the parent.
The compress operation is performed on versioned geodatabases. Its primary purpose is to remove unreferenced states and their associated delta table rows, and move entries in the delta tables common to all versions into the base tables. This reduces the amount of data the database needs to search through for each version query, thereby improving query performance and system response time.
Versioned geodatabases that are actively edited must be compressed frequently (daily or weekly, depending on edit volume). The longer you go between compress operations, the longer the compress operation will take to complete.
The Default version is the original version of an enterprise, workgroup, or desktop geodatabase. All other geodatabase versions are a descendent of the Default version.
The deletes table records all deletions made in a versioned dataset. It also contains records for updated records, because an update is the equivalent of deleting the record as it previously existed and adding the altered record. The deletes table is one of the delta tables.
The deletes table is also called the D table.
The edit version is the child version you are currently updating.
In the database, the edit version is the set of state changes made during your edit session. During the reconcile process, this state lineage is compared to the state lineage of the target version to detect conflicts.
A geodatabase version represents a snapshot, in time, of the entire geodatabase. It allows edits to the geodatabase to be isolated from one another, which prevents locking, even if edit sessions last long periods of time.
move edits to base
Only specify this option when you register the data as versioned if the data modifications you will be making take only a few minutes to complete and if you are connecting to a versioned geodatabase using a third-party application.
You cannot use the move edits to base option on datasets that contain a topology or network, are archived, or participate in replication.
A parent version is the geodatabase version from which another version is generated. You cannot delete a parent version if this other version (the child version) still exists.
The post operation can only complete if the target version has not been modified since the reconcile operation was completed. If the target version has been modified in the interim, you will have to reconcile again before posting.
The reconcile process is part of the versioned editing workflow that compares the state lineage of your edit version and the target version to find conflicts between the two. Conflicts arise when your edits contradict edits made to the target version by another user.
You can set rules to define conflicts—whether conflicts are changes made to a row or any changes made in a column—and the default behavior for conflict resolution—whether the edit version or target version changes take precedence.
Reconciling only updates the edit version so that ArcGIS can check for conflicts; it does not merge changes into the target version. You must review and resolve any conflicts detected during the reconcile process before you can merge (post) them with the target version.
register as versioned
Registering a feature class as versioned creates an adds and deletes table. These tables track edits made to the dataset and allow you to edit a dataset without blocking other users from accessing or editing it.
When you register a dataset as versioned, you can register it as fully versioned (the default option) or with the option to move edits to base.
A geodatabase state is a record of a change made to a version. Every time you edit a feature within a version, a new state is created.
state lineage or state tree
A state lineage or state tree is a sequence of states, starting with the beginning state and ending with the current state. It represents a series of changes made to a geodatabase. Each branch in the tree or lineage records how a version has evolved.
A version tree is an organizational chart of related geodatabase versions. Similar to a family tree, a version tree shows how versions are related—which versions are parents to which child versions—and allows you to trace the ancestry of a particular child version back to the Default version.