Well, maybe, keeping a backup of your HOME folder is always a good idea ( and your database), preferably scheduled close together.
If you discount certain structures e.g. indexes, attachments folders etc, transitory osgi plugin folders, you'll get a reasonable snapshot, but, you're never going to go back, and the HOME folder is only half the story, ideally you'd need to synchronise the two, how /when are you backing up the database that contains all your page data?
Are you happy checking in JAR files into SVN? what is the advantage of having this instead of a timestamped stored on a filesystem (has the advantage of being purgeable).
In the past, I would always use a .tgz, on a non-windows platform to avoid file locking issues.
If you are very particular with you .svnignore you could capture certain key configuration files in SVN, with the clear result of being able track who made what changes when. Of course, there is the chance that automated changes may be made that you might not be aware of. As mentioned above, whole hog SVN commit is likely to do bad things to your SVN (unnecssary bloat, loading, etc).
You *can*, but I don't recommend it. A lot of files change all the time. Not sure that there is much point. Is the aim to roll something back to a point in time? I think snapshots would be a better idea in this case. It's hard to roll back a single file in JIRA regardless as it might cause problems elsewhere.
You can keep configuration files in SVN. That sounds like what you might keep.
Performance might also degrade with adding SVN.
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