If you access CVS over SSH you will know that you have to do two things to get it working. Firstly, you have to set the CVS_RSH environment variable to the location of your SSH binary. Secondly you have to use the :ext: scheme for the CVSROOT environment variable (or -d flag). The thing is, there is no place in the :ext: scheme to set a port number! This means that CVS will try to open the SSH connection to the specified server on the standard SSH port. I don’t like running SSHD on the standard port, I much prefer to stick it on a non-standard port, but does that mean I can’t use CVS over SSH? Well, if you leave things to CVS then yes, but luckily OpenSSH is not as retarded as CVS and provides you with a simple mechanism for over-ridding the default port on a per-host basis. The key is to add an entry for the host in question to your ~/.ssh/config file. The sample below tells SSH to use port 123 as the default port when connecting to the server my.machine.ie:

Host my.machine.ie
  Port 123

This will work on Unix, Linux and OS X as well as through Cygwin on Windows.

[tags]SSH, CVS, OpenSSH[/tags]

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I’ve been a CVS user for years but have spent most of those years cursing its short-comings. The main reasons I stuck with CVS despite this were:

  • Lock-in – there is a lot of code in both my personal CVS repository and the one for the EVE project. If it ain’t broke …….
  • Maturity – CVS has been around for donkey’s years. The code is stable, people know how to use it, and there are loads of tools and tutorials out there. Subversion is a lot newer and still changing.
  • Inertia – it took a lot of poking and prodding over the years to get people using CVS, people don’t want to have to start the learning curve all over again!

I’ve been reading about how great subversion is for ages but had never quite gotten round to trying it myself. The reason I hadn’t tried it was because I’d never had an excuse to dedicate scarce time to it. However, a few weeks ago people in work started voicing an interest in Subversion so I took that as my cue to finally give it a go.

[tags]Source Control, CVS, Subversion, SVN[/tags]

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