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Postings from April 2000
Re: CVS: Ugh
From: Michael G Schwern
April 5, 2000 10:04
Re: CVS: Ugh
Message ID: 20000405130438.B803@athens.aocn.com
Just to throw my $0.02 of gasoline on the fire... there are two things
which keep me on CVS (well, maybe three).
1) Its free.
ClearCase is great and all, but its bloody expensive. The offshoot
of this is that almost everyone has (or can get) a CVS client. Not
everyone wants to (or can) buy a ClearCase client. This is, of course
extremely important in an Open Source project.
2) Its text.
Now matter what horrific things you do to it, you can
almost always recover a CVS repository. No mysterious binary file
formats. No registry to corrupt. If worse comes to worse you can
just hack around in the cvs root.
3) It links into emacs' vc-mode. :)
Although I'm not sure if the big commercial version control systems
do or not. Haven't looked. I think ClearCase does.
That being said, my garbage list has gotten rather long in the one
year that I've used it. Lack of support for symlinks, hairy method of
moving files, almost impossible to remove or move a directory (without
doing it in the root itself), silly defaults for commands, massively
overloaded interface (HOW many options does "cvs update" have?)
As kind of an offshoot, I've done a little bit with SourceForge and I
found the greatest lacking to be the inability to get at the root
directly. I've become so accustomed to having to do stuff manually
that having only cvs/ssh access to my repository leaves me hamstrung.
However, I do applaud CVS's staunch decision to be a version control
system and ONLY a version control system. There's too many
version/build/config/manage/test/distribute bloated all-in-wonders out
there already. Its nice to see a project which hasn't succumbed to
the urge to do everything.
PS Has anyone experience with Bitmover? Larry ummm... Rosler is it?
was bubbling over about it at the Linux Expo '98 but I never got a
chance to really look at it.
PPS As an amusing aside, I remember talking to one of the commercial
version control guys (I don't want to name names because I don't
remember exactly who it was) in early '98. Their salesman came down
and was showing us all the wonderful things their system could
do... on a Windows box. Apparently there was no Unix client, just a
Solaris server and a Windows client. When pressed he said that they
didn't want to get involved with Linux or BSD because there's no tech
support for them and they're too unstable anyway.
We've come a long way, baby.
Michael G Schwern http://www.pobox.com/~schwern/ firstname.lastname@example.org
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