Where CVS failes
This text lists a number of shortcomings in CVS.
- No changesets
- There is not way to cannot commit changes to a number of files atomically:
If the commit to one file fails the other files will be accepted, which might
have devasting effects of the changes depend on each other (.c, .h?).
- No file move
- There's no clean way to rename or move a file. (the only ways i see are
to either lose VC history and tag, or manually adjust the state in $CVSROOT).
- No distributed repositories.
- CVS has a strict "one server" model:
- Large projects tend to overload this one server (there are a number of
workaround like cvsup).
- You can't do multilevel distributed development: You cannot work on a
number of modifications in different working areas, commit them to
an interim repository, resolve all the conflicts, check the result
for correctness, and commit the stuff together to the upper level
- Access control is lacking
- CVS basically hasn't a notion of access control. It leaves this task
to the operating system (which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but CVS
hasn't been written with security and access control in mind).
While there are a number of workarounds these still offer no real protection
against malicious users.
- CVS is slow
- No version control for metadata
- Ever checked out a file from CVS and saw that the access rights are
- Branches are done wrong
- CVS branches are based on tags in each file, and are basically implemented
by abusing version numbers. This means:
- To create a branch the server has to touch all files in the branch.
- The server needs to do quite a lot of work to get a revision of a
branch - it needs to start from the head revision, go back to some
point where the branch started, and move to the tip of the branch.
- It's to easy to mess them up. In fact the manual even shows an
cvs tag -r 1.6 -F stable backend.c
- No check sums
- CVS is based on RCS, and RCS didn't use checksums on files. Things
get funny if you detect that your repository has had a bad disk
sector some months ago (SCSI disks should be forbidden
to remap bad sectors, but that's a different story). With many other
VC systems you can do an integrity check on your repository, with
CVS you can only hope that something which is needed for a build
is broken (instead of, for example, documentation).
- CVS add / remove access the repository
- commit should do that.
- Directory support is lacking
- Did you ever try to move a directory? A tedious task.