Python, licenses and CVS

Paul Boddie paul at
Wed Nov 28 14:25:09 CET 2001

Paul Rubin <phr-n2001d at> wrote in message news:<7xelmjbgwz.fsf at>...
> CVS is a layer over RCS that lets multiple people work on the same
> files at the same time, and automatically merges their changes at
> check-in.  I don't see any point to it for a one person project.  RCS
> is a lot simpler.  I use RCS for one-person projects and couldn't live
> without it.  But I haven't found a reason to deal with the increased
> complexity of CVS.  Is there one?

It's been ages since I last worked with RCS, but I did work with SCCS
extensively not so long ago and I would say that there are numerous
advantages to using CVS in preference to the other two.

For example, it's possible to change into another directory and check
out a completely different release to the one you're working on
(useful for testing stuff), or even the same release (useful for
putting release packages together), whilst keeping your existing work
separate and unaffected. These activities may seem to be things that
only multi-person projects would demand, but by focusing on the
different roles in a project, things can become a lot more convenient
(and reliable) for one person working on their own. After all,
software development rarely involves only one kind of activity.

As far as ease of use is concerned, I wouldn't say that CVS is really
any harder than RCS, although the more interesting features of CVS can
take time to master. However, I doubt that people would attempt
similar or equivalent things in RCS so readily. If you can master
"ci", "cout" and "rcsdiff", you can surely master "cvs commit", "cvs
update"/"cvs checkout" and "cvs diff".


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