at least svn cat, possible other commands, do not look to the working copy property database, only to the database on the server. Steps to reproduce: 1) checkout some files (if you haven't already) 2) set a property for cat, like svn:eol-style on a file 3) svn cat that file - the property doesn't take effect. Tracing this issue in gdb, I've checked out a file with no properties, then done a svn propset svn:eol-style 'native' [file]. Tracing svn cat [file], I find that eol_style in libsvn_client/cat.c always is null. This is because the property database always gets fetched through DAV (or whatever transport) on svn cat. Perhaps it should have a pristine check like svn propget does to determine if we should fetch from the working copy or the server.
Original issue reported by jamesl