Defeated by CVS, Windows, and IIS

Okay, I'll admit it. I've come up against a techno-combo that just has drained me (and bugs the crap out of me). I'm throwing in the towel and picking up a new one.

We setup CVSNT at work for team source control in order to adapt to a more agile development lifecycle (PVCS just doesn't work when everyone is refactoring and checking in all the time). We're still using PVCS for our enteprise SCM and when things are ready, they're labeled at checked into our corporate repository (well, that's the plan anyways). It's a nice setup and works well.

I've been struggling with getting some kind of web interface for CVS working with IIS. Yes, I'm tied down to IIS as our corporate web servers which is fine. So I went out to hunt down all the tools I could find and make work (the ultimate goal is to turn our Projects Portal running on SharePoint into something like SourceForge where you can access the source code from a project website). Talk about painful.

CVSWebNT was the first stop. After installing ActivePerl I was okay burning through the setup. However Perl really isn't a friendly thing to debug, especially when it's an out-of-process cgi-bin script. So after many tries at hanging IIS and rebooting the server, I gave up. Next seemed like a nice gem called CVS4IIS. VB, ASP, and COM (blech) but okay let's give it a try. Not bad but didn't seem to work and it can't support multiple repositories. Finally I took at look at ViewCVS for Windows. Well, not really official but Russ is doing a good job of getting things going there. Problem is that now I would have to install Python, and the Python for Windows extensions and whatever else is thrown in there. In a corporate environment when you're somewhat limited to using a core set of technologies (Python is not one of them) it's tricky. Pain and suffering all before my 2nd cup of coffee this morning.

So why isn't there a nice project out there that does this easily? I mean, CVSNT is great. Works well, actually has an installer, and doesn't seem to fall over when you look at it. I'm throwing in the towel on trying to get these things working in our environment but there might be hope. Now I'm charged with looking at writing what should hopefully be a fairly simple ASP.NET application to do this. I mean, how frickin' hard can it be? (famous last words). Here comes NCVSWeb coming soon to a SourceForge site near you.

I so wish for a Linux server at work. Just one. Just a little one. A copy of Debian and a call to apt install cvs and I'm done.


  • Why not use Subversion? It's fast, works amazingly well in either win32 and *nix, It has good stable scm tools which integrate directly in the shell and even, and if install Apache 2 and use the modules included with it you have instant WebDAV access to your repository... (which means you can write some cool custom webparts which communicate directly with your repository using WebDAV for example ;) )

    Compared with Subversion CVS really really blows... try it and you'll never look back, at least i did ;)

    win32 binaries can be found on (lots of subversion related tools can be found on aswell btw), and the excellent documentation can be found at :)

  • If only we could run Subversion via IIS sans Apache...

  • If you are looking for Win32 clients, check out TortoiseSVN (shell addin) and AnkhSVN ( addin) which are hosted on aswell. I've got some good experience with both of them.

Comments have been disabled for this content.