CVSNT---Concurrent Versions System v1.11.1.3


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This info manual describes how to use and administer CVSNT version 1.11.1.3.


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Overview

This chapter is for people who have never used CVSNT, and perhaps have never used version control software before.

If you are already familiar with CVSNT and are just trying to learn a particular feature or remember a certain command, you can probably skip everything here.


Node:What is CVS?, Next:, Previous:Overview, Up:Overview

What is CVS?

CVSNT is a version control system. Using it, you can record the history of your source files.

For example, bugs sometimes creep in when software is modified, and you might not detect the bug until a long time after you make the modification. With CVSNT, you can easily retrieve old versions to see exactly which change caused the bug. This can sometimes be a big help.

You could of course save every version of every file you have ever created. This would however waste an enormous amount of disk space. CVSNT stores all the versions of a file in a single file in a clever way that only stores the differences between versions.

CVSNT also helps you if you are part of a group of people working on the same project. It is all too easy to overwrite each others' changes unless you are extremely careful. Some editors, like GNU Emacs, try to make sure that the same file is never modified by two people at the same time. Unfortunately, if someone is using another editor, that safeguard will not work. CVSNT solves this problem by insulating the different developers from each other. Every developer works in his own directory, and CVSNT merges the work when each developer is done.

CVSNT started out as a bunch of shell scripts written by Dick Grune, posted to the newsgroup comp.sources.unix in the volume 6 release of December, 1986. While no actual code from these shell scripts is present in the current version of CVSNT much of the CVSNT conflict resolution algorithms come from them.

In April, 1989, Brian Berliner designed and coded CVS. Jeff Polk later helped Brian with the design of the CVS module and vendor branch support.

In December, 1999 Tony Hoyle converted the unix based CVS to run under Windows NT. This later became cvsnt, which developed into a project of its own.

You can get CVSNT in a variety of ways, including free download from the internet. For more information on downloading CVSNT and other CVSNT topics, see:

     http://www.cvsnt.org/
     

There is a mailing list, known as cvsnt, devoted to CVSNT. To subscribe or unsubscribe see:

     http://www.cvsnt.org/mailman/listinfo/cvsnt
     news://news.cvsnt.org/support.cvsnt
     
If you prefer a usenet group, the right group is comp.software.config-mgmt which is for CVSNT discussions (along with other configuration management systems). In the future, it might be possible to create a comp.software.config-mgmt.cvs, but probably only if there is sufficient CVSNT traffic on comp.software.config-mgmt.


Node:What is CVS not?, Next:, Previous:What is CVS?, Up:Overview

What is CVS not?

CVSNT can do a lot of things for you, but it does not try to be everything for everyone.

CVSNT is not a build system.
Though the structure of your repository and modules file interact with your build system (e.g. Makefiles), they are essentially independent.

CVSNT does not dictate how you build anything. It merely stores files for retrieval in a tree structure you devise.

CVSNT does not dictate how to use disk space in the checked out working directories. If you write your Makefiles or scripts in every directory so they have to know the relative positions of everything else, you wind up requiring the entire repository to be checked out.

If you modularize your work, and construct a build system that will share files (via links, mounts, VPATH in Makefiles, etc.), you can arrange your disk usage however you like.

But you have to remember that any such system is a lot of work to construct and maintain. CVSNT does not address the issues involved.

Of course, you should place the tools created to support such a build system (scripts, Makefiles, etc) under CVSNT.

Figuring out what files need to be rebuilt when something changes is, again, something to be handled outside the scope of CVSNT. One traditional approach is to use make for building, and use some automated tool for generating the dependencies which make uses.

See Builds, for more information on doing builds in conjunction with CVSNT.

CVSNT is not a substitute for management.
Your managers and project leaders are expected to talk to you frequently enough to make certain you are aware of schedules, merge points, branch names and release dates. If they don't, CVSNT can't help.

CVSNT is an instrument for making sources dance to your tune. But you are the piper and the composer. No instrument plays itself or writes its own music.

CVSNT is not a substitute for developer communication.
When faced with conflicts within a single file, most developers manage to resolve them without too much effort. But a more general definition of "conflict" includes problems too difficult to solve without communication between developers.

CVSNT cannot determine when simultaneous changes within a single file, or across a whole collection of files, will logically conflict with one another. Its concept of a conflict is purely textual, arising when two changes to the same base file are near enough to spook the merge (i.e. diff3) command.

CVSNT does not claim to help at all in figuring out non-textual or distributed conflicts in program logic.

For example: Say you change the arguments to function X defined in file A. At the same time, someone edits file B, adding new calls to function X using the old arguments. You are outside the realm of CVSNT's competence.

Acquire the habit of reading specs and talking to your peers.

CVSNT does not have change control
Change control refers to a number of things. First of all it can mean bug-tracking, that is being able to keep a database of reported bugs and the status of each one (is it fixed? in what release? has the bug submitter agreed that it is fixed?). For interfacing CVSNT to an external bug-tracking system, see the rcsinfo and verifymsg files (see Administrative files).

Another aspect of change control is keeping track of the fact that changes to several files were in fact changed together as one logical change. If you check in several files in a single cvs commit operation, CVSNT then forgets that those files were checked in together, and the fact that they have the same log message is the only thing tying them together. Keeping a GNU style ChangeLog can help somewhat.

Another aspect of change control, in some systems, is the ability to keep track of the status of each change. Some changes have been written by a developer, others have been reviewed by a second developer, and so on. Generally, the way to do this with CVSNT is to generate a diff (using cvs diff or diff) and email it to someone who can then apply it using the patch utility. This is very flexible, but depends on mechanisms outside CVSNT to make sure nothing falls through the cracks.

CVSNT is not an automated testing program
It should be possible to enforce mandatory use of a testsuite using the commitinfo file. I haven't heard a lot about projects trying to do that or whether there are subtle gotchas, however.
CVSNT does not have a builtin process model
Some systems provide ways to ensure that changes or releases go through various steps, with various approvals as needed. Generally, one can accomplish this with CVSNT but it might be a little more work. In some cases you'll want to use the commitinfo, loginfo, rcsinfo, or verifymsg files, to require that certain steps be performed before cvs will allow a checkin. Also consider whether features such as branches and tags can be used to perform tasks such as doing work in a development tree and then merging certain changes over to a stable tree only once they have been proven.


Node:A sample session, Previous:What is CVS not?, Up:Overview

A sample session

As a way of introducing CVSNT, we'll go through a typical work-session using CVSNT. The first thing to understand is that CVSNT stores all files in a centralized repository (see Repository); this section assumes that a repository is set up.

Suppose you are working on a simple compiler. The source consists of a handful of C files and a Makefile. The compiler is called tc (Trivial Compiler), and the repository is set up so that there is a module called tc.


Node:Getting the source, Next:, Previous:A sample session, Up:A sample session

Getting the source

The first thing you must do is to get your own working copy of the source for tc. For this, you use the checkout command:

     $ cvs checkout tc
     

This will create a new directory called tc and populate it with the source files.

     $ cd tc
     $ ls
     CVS         Makefile    backend.c   driver.c    frontend.c  parser.c
     

The CVS directory is used internally by CVSNT. Normally, you should not modify or remove any of the files in it.

You start your favorite editor, hack away at backend.c, and a couple of hours later you have added an optimization pass to the compiler. A note to RCS and SCCS users: There is no need to lock the files that you want to edit. See Multiple developers, for an explanation.


Node:Committing your changes, Next:, Previous:Getting the source, Up:A sample session

Committing your changes

When you have checked that the compiler is still compilable you decide to make a new version of backend.c. This will store your new backend.c in the repository and make it available to anyone else who is using that same repository.

     $ cvs commit backend.c
     

CVSNT starts an editor, to allow you to enter a log message. You type in "Added an optimization pass.", save the temporary file, and exit the editor.

The environment variable $CVSEDITOR determines which editor is started. If $CVSEDITOR is not set, then if the environment variable $EDITOR is set, it will be used. If both $CVSEDITOR and $EDITOR are not set then there is a default which will vary with your operating system, for example vi for unix or notepad for Windows NT/95.

In addition, CVSNT checks the $VISUAL environment variable. Opinions vary on whether this behavior is desirable and whether future releases of CVSNT should check $VISUAL or ignore it. You will be OK either way if you make sure that $VISUAL is either unset or set to the same thing as $EDITOR.

When CVSNT starts the editor, it includes a list of files which are modified. For the CVSNT client, this list is based on comparing the modification time of the file against the modification time that the file had when it was last gotten or updated. Therefore, if a file's modification time has changed but its contents have not, it will show up as modified. The simplest way to handle this is simply not to worry about it--if you proceed with the commit CVSNT will detect that the contents are not modified and treat it as an unmodified file. The next update will clue CVSNT in to the fact that the file is unmodified, and it will reset its stored timestamp so that the file will not show up in future editor sessions.

If you want to avoid starting an editor you can specify the log message on the command line using the -m flag instead, like this:

     $ cvs commit -m "Added an optimization pass" backend.c
     


Node:Cleaning up, Next:, Previous:Committing your changes, Up:A sample session

Cleaning up

Before you turn to other tasks you decide to remove your working copy of tc. One acceptable way to do that is of course

     $ cd ..
     $ rm -r tc
     

but a better way is to use the release command (see release):

     $ cd ..
     $ cvs release -d tc
     M driver.c
     ? tc
     You have [1] altered files in this repository.
     Are you sure you want to release (and delete) directory `tc': n
     ** `release' aborted by user choice.
     

The release command checks that all your modifications have been committed. If history logging is enabled it also makes a note in the history file. See history file.

When you use the -d flag with release, it also removes your working copy.

In the example above, the release command wrote a couple of lines of output. ? tc means that the file tc is unknown to CVSNT. That is nothing to worry about: tc is the executable compiler, and it should not be stored in the repository. See cvsignore, for information about how to make that warning go away. See release output, for a complete explanation of all possible output from release.

M driver.c is more serious. It means that the file driver.c has been modified since it was checked out.

The release command always finishes by telling you how many modified files you have in your working copy of the sources, and then asks you for confirmation before deleting any files or making any note in the history file.

You decide to play it safe and answer n <RET> when release asks for confirmation.


Node:Viewing differences, Previous:Cleaning up, Up:A sample session

Viewing differences

You do not remember modifying driver.c, so you want to see what has happened to that file.

     $ cd tc
     $ cvs diff driver.c
     

This command runs diff to compare the version of driver.c that you checked out with your working copy. When you see the output you remember that you added a command line option that enabled the optimization pass. You check it in, and release the module.

     $ cvs commit -m "Added an optimization pass" driver.c
     Checking in driver.c;
     /usr/local/cvsroot/tc/driver.c,v  <--  driver.c
     new revision: 1.2; previous revision: 1.1
     done
     $ cd ..
     $ cvs release -d tc
     ? tc
     You have [0] altered files in this repository.
     Are you sure you want to release (and delete) directory `tc': y
     


Node:Repository, Next:, Previous:Overview, Up:Top

The Repository

The CVSNT repository stores a complete copy of all the files and directories which are under version control.

Normally, you never access any of the files in the repository directly. Instead, you use CVSNT commands to get your own copy of the files into a working directory, and then work on that copy. When you've finished a set of changes, you check (or commit) them back into the repository. The repository then contains the changes which you have made, as well as recording exactly what you changed, when you changed it, and other such information. Note that the repository is not a subdirectory of the working directory, or vice versa; they should be in separate locations.

CVSNT can access a repository by a variety of means. It might be on the local computer, or it might be on a computer across the room or across the world. To distinguish various ways to access a repository, the repository name can start with an access method. For example, the access method :local: means to access a repository directory, so the repository :local:/usr/local/cvsroot means that the repository is in /usr/local/cvsroot on the computer running CVSNT. For information on other access methods, see Remote repositories.

If the access method is omitted, then if the repository does not contain :, then :local: is assumed. If it does contain : then either :ext: or :server: is assumed. For example, if you have a local repository in /usr/local/cvsroot, you can use /usr/local/cvsroot instead of :local:/usr/local/cvsroot. But if (under Windows NT, for example) your local repository is c:\src\cvsroot, then you must specify the access method, as in :local:c:\src\cvsroot.

The repository is split in two parts. $CVSROOT/CVSROOT contains administrative files for CVSNT. The other directories contain the actual user-defined modules.


Node:Specifying a repository, Next:, Previous:Repository, Up:Repository

Telling CVS where your repository is

There are several ways to tell CVSNT where to find the repository. You can name the repository on the command line explicitly, with the -d (for "directory") option:

     cvs -d /usr/local/cvsroot checkout yoyodyne/tc
     

Or you can set the $CVSROOT environment variable to an absolute path to the root of the repository, /usr/local/cvsroot in this example. To set $CVSROOT, csh and tcsh users should have this line in their .cshrc or .tcshrc files:

     setenv CVSROOT /usr/local/cvsroot
     

sh and bash users should instead have these lines in their .profile or .bashrc:

     CVSROOT=/usr/local/cvsroot
     export CVSROOT
     

A repository specified with -d will override the $CVSROOT environment variable. Once you've checked a working copy out from the repository, it will remember where its repository is (the information is recorded in the CVS/Root file in the working copy).

The -d option and the CVS/Root file both override the $CVSROOT environment variable. If -d option differs from CVS/Root, the former is used. Of course, for proper operation they should be two ways of referring to the same repository.


Node:Repository storage, Next:, Previous:Specifying a repository, Up:Repository

How data is stored in the repository

For most purposes it isn't important how CVSNT stores information in the repository. In fact, the format has changed in the past, and is likely to change in the future. Since in almost all cases one accesses the repository via CVSNT commands, such changes need not be disruptive.

However, in some cases it may be necessary to understand how CVSNT stores data in the repository, for example you might need to track down CVSNT locks (see Concurrency) or you might need to deal with the file permissions appropriate for the repository.


Node:Repository files, Next:, Previous:Repository storage, Up:Repository storage

Where files are stored within the repository

The overall structure of the repository is a directory tree corresponding to the directories in the working directory. For example, supposing the repository is in

     /usr/local/cvsroot
     

here is a possible directory tree (showing only the directories):

     /usr
      |
      +--local
      |   |
      |   +--cvsroot
      |   |    |
      |   |    +--CVSROOT
               |      (administrative files)
               |
               +--gnu
               |   |
               |   +--diff
               |   |   (source code to GNU diff)
               |   |
               |   +--rcs
               |   |   (source code to RCS)
               |   |
               |   +--cvsnt
               |       (source code to CVSNT)
               |
               +--yoyodyne
                   |
                   +--tc
                   |    |
                   |    +--man
                   |    |
                   |    +--testing
                   |
                   +--(other Yoyodyne software)
     

With the directories are history files for each file under version control. The name of the history file is the name of the corresponding file with ,v appended to the end. Here is what the repository for the yoyodyne/tc directory might look like:

       $CVSROOT
         |
         +--yoyodyne
         |   |
         |   +--tc
         |   |   |
                 +--Makefile,v
                 +--backend.c,v
                 +--driver.c,v
                 +--frontend.c,v
                 +--parser.c,v
                 +--man
                 |    |
                 |    +--tc.1,v
                 |
                 +--testing
                      |
                      +--testpgm.t,v
                      +--test2.t,v
     

The history files contain, among other things, enough information to recreate any revision of the file, a log of all commit messages and the user-name of the person who committed the revision. The history files are known as RCS files, because the first program to store files in that format was a version control system known as RCS. For a full description of the file format, see the man page rcsfile(5), distributed with RCS, or the file doc/RCSFILES in the CVSNT source distribution. This file format has become very common--many systems other than CVSNT or RCS can at least import history files in this format.

The RCS files used in CVSNT differ in a few ways from the standard format. The biggest difference is magic branches; for more information see Magic branch numbers. Also in CVSNT the valid tag names are a subset of what RCS accepts; for CVSNT's rules see Tags.


Node:File permissions, Next:, Previous:Repository files, Up:Repository storage

File permissions

All ,v files are created read-only, and you should not change the permission of those files. The directories inside the repository should be writable by the persons that have permission to modify the files in each directory. On Unix, this normally means that you must create a group (see group(5)) consisting of the persons that are to edit the files in a project, and set up the repository so that it is that group that owns the directory. On Windows, you must allow write access to the files for each user or group that is accessing the repository. If impersonation is not enabled, then the repository is always accessed as SYSTEM.

This means that you can only control access to files on a per-directory basis.

Note that users must also have write access to check out files, because CVSNT needs to create lock files (see Concurrency).

Also note that users must have write access to the CVSROOT/val-tags file. CVSNT uses it to keep track of what tags are valid tag names (it is sometimes updated when tags are used, as well as when they are created).

Each RCS file will be owned by the user who last checked it in. This has little significance; what really matters is who owns the directories.

CVSNT tries to set up reasonable file permissions for new directories that are added inside the tree, but you must fix the permissions manually when a new directory should have different permissions than its parent directory. If you set the CVSUMASK environment variable that will control the file permissions which CVSNT uses in creating directories and/or files in the repository. CVSUMASK does not affect the file permissions in the working directory; such files have the permissions which are typical for newly created files, except that sometimes CVSNT creates them read-only (see the sections on watches, Setting a watch; -r, Global options; or CVSREAD, Environment variables).

Note that using the client/server CVSNT (see Remote repositories), there is no good way to set CVSUMASK; the setting on the client machine has no effect. If you are connecting with ssh, you can set CVSUMASK in .bashrc or .cshrc, as described in the documentation for your operating system. This behavior might change in future versions of CVSNT; do not rely on the setting of CVSUMASK on the client having no effect.

Using remote repositories, you will generally need stricter permissions on the CVSROOT directory and directories above it in the tree; see Authentication security.

Some operating systems have features which allow a particular program to run with the ability to perform operations which the caller of the program could not. For example, the set user ID (setuid) or set group ID (setgid) features of unix or the installed image feature of VMS. CVSNT was not written to use such features and therefore attempting to install CVSNT in this fashion will provide protection against only accidental lapses; anyone who is trying to circumvent the measure will be able to do so, and depending on how you have set it up may gain access to more than just CVSNT. You may wish to instead consider pserver. It shares some of the same attributes, in terms of possibly providing a false sense of security or opening security holes wider than the ones you are trying to fix, so read the documentation on pserver security carefully if you are considering this option (Authentication security).


Node:Windows permissions, Next:, Previous:File permissions, Up:Repository storage

File Permission issues specific to Windows

Some file permission issues are specific to Windows operating systems (Windows 95, Windows NT, and presumably future operating systems in this family. Some of the following might apply to OS/2 but I'm not sure).

If you are using local CVSNT and the repository is on a networked file system which is served by the Samba SMB server, some people have reported problems with permissions. Enabling WRITE=YES in the samba configuration is said to fix/workaround it. Disclaimer: I haven't investigated enough to know the implications of enabling that option, nor do I know whether there is something which CVSNT could be doing differently in order to avoid the problem. If you find something out, please let us know as described in BUGS.


Node:Attic, Next:, Previous:Windows permissions, Up:Repository storage

The attic

You will notice that sometimes CVSNT stores an RCS file in the Attic. For example, if the CVSROOT is /usr/local/cvsroot and we are talking about the file backend.c in the directory yoyodyne/tc, then the file normally would be in

     /usr/local/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/backend.c,v
     

but if it goes in the attic, it would be in

     /usr/local/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/Attic/backend.c,v
     

instead. It should not matter from a user point of view whether a file is in the attic; CVSNT keeps track of this and looks in the attic when it needs to. But in case you want to know, the rule is that the RCS file is stored in the attic if and only if the head revision on the trunk has state dead. A dead state means that file has been removed, or never added, for that revision. For example, if you add a file on a branch, it will have a trunk revision in dead state, and a branch revision in a non-dead state.


Node:CVS in repository, Next:, Previous:Attic, Up:Repository storage

The CVS directory in the repository

The CVS directory in each repository directory contains information such as file attributes (in a file called CVS/fileattr. In the future additional files may be added to this directory, so implementations should silently ignore additional files.

This behavior is implemented only by CVSNT 1.7 and later; for details see Watches Compatibility.

The format of the fileattr file is a series of entries of the following form (where { and } means the text between the braces can be repeated zero or more times):

ent-type filename <tab> attrname = attrval {; attrname = attrval} <linefeed>

ent-type is F for a file, in which case the entry specifies the attributes for that file.

ent-type is D, and filename empty, to specify default attributes to be used for newly added files.

Other ent-type are reserved for future expansion. CVSNT 1.9 and older will delete them any time it writes file attributes. CVS 1.10 and later will preserve them.

Note that the order of the lines is not significant; a program writing the fileattr file may rearrange them at its convenience.

There is currently no way of quoting tabs or linefeeds in the filename, = in attrname, ; in attrval, etc. Note: some implementations also don't handle a NUL character in any of the fields, but implementations are encouraged to allow it.

By convention, attrname starting with _ is for an attribute given special meaning by CVSNT; other attrnames are for user-defined attributes (or will be, once implementations start supporting user-defined attributes).

Builtin attributes:

_watched
Present means the file is watched and should be checked out read-only.
_watchers
Users with watches for this file. Value is watcher > type { , watcher > type } where watcher is a username, and type is zero or more of edit,unedit,commit separated by + (that is, nothing if none; there is no "none" or "all" keyword).
_editors
Users editing this file. Value is editor > val { , editor > val } where editor is a username, and val is time+hostname+pathname, where time is when the cvs edit command (or equivalent) happened, and hostname and pathname are for the working directory.

Example:

     Ffile1 _watched=;_watchers=joe>edit,mary>commit
     Ffile2 _watched=;_editors=sue>8 Jan 1975+workstn1+/home/sue/cvs
     D _watched=
     

means that the file file1 should be checked out read-only. Furthermore, joe is watching for edits and mary is watching for commits. The file file2 should be checked out read-only; sue started editing it on 8 Jan 1975 in the directory /home/sue/cvs on the machine workstn1. Future files which are added should be checked out read-only. To represent this example here, we have shown a space after D, Ffile1, and Ffile2, but in fact there must be a single tab character there and no spaces.


Node:Locks, Next:, Previous:CVS in repository, Up:Repository storage

CVS locks in the repository

For an introduction to CVSNT locks focusing on user-visible behavior, see Concurrency. The following section is aimed at people who are writing tools which want to access a CVSNT repository without interfering with other tools acessing the same repository. If you find yourself confused by concepts described here, like read lock, write lock, and deadlock, you might consult the literature on operating systems or databases.

Any file in the repository with a name starting with #cvs.rfl. is a read lock. Any file in the repository with a name starting with #cvs.wfl is a write lock. Old versions of CVSNT (before CVSNT 1.5) also created files with names starting with #cvs.tfl, but they are not discussed here. The directory #cvs.lock serves as a master lock. That is, one must obtain this lock first before creating any of the other locks.

To obtain a readlock, first create the #cvs.lock directory. This operation must be atomic (which should be true for creating a directory under most operating systems). If it fails because the directory already existed, wait for a while and try again. After obtaining the #cvs.lock lock, create a file whose name is #cvs.rfl. followed by information of your choice (for example, hostname and process identification number). Then remove the #cvs.lock directory to release the master lock. Then proceed with reading the repository. When you are done, remove the #cvs.rfl file to release the read lock.

To obtain a writelock, first create the #cvs.lock directory, as with a readlock. Then check that there are no files whose names start with #cvs.rfl.. If there are, remove #cvs.lock, wait for a while, and try again. If there are no readers, then create a file whose name is #cvs.wfl followed by information of your choice (for example, hostname and process identification number). Hang on to the #cvs.lock lock. Proceed with writing the repository. When you are done, first remove the #cvs.wfl file and then the #cvs.lock directory. Note that unlike the #cvs.rfl file, the #cvs.wfl file is just informational; it has no effect on the locking operation beyond what is provided by holding on to the #cvs.lock lock itself.

Note that each lock (writelock or readlock) only locks a single directory in the repository, including Attic and CVS but not including subdirectories which represent other directories under version control. To lock an entire tree, you need to lock each directory (note that if you fail to obtain any lock you need, you must release the whole tree before waiting and trying again, to avoid deadlocks).

Note also that CVSNT expects writelocks to control access to individual foo,v files. RCS has a scheme where the ,foo, file serves as a lock, but CVSNT does not implement it and so taking out a CVSNT writelock is recommended. See the comments at rcs_internal_lockfile in the CVSNT source code for further discussion/rationale.


Node:CVSROOT storage, Previous:Locks, Up:Repository storage

How files are stored in the CVSROOT directory

The $CVSROOT/CVSROOT directory contains the various administrative files. In some ways this directory is just like any other directory in the repository; it contains RCS files whose names end in ,v, and many of the CVSNT commands operate on it the same way. However, there are a few differences.

For each administrative file, in addition to the RCS file, there is also a checked out copy of the file. For example, there is an RCS file loginfo,v and a file loginfo which contains the latest revision contained in loginfo,v. When you check in an administrative file, CVSNT should print

     cvs commit: Rebuilding administrative file database
     

and update the checked out copy in $CVSROOT/CVSROOT. If it does not, there is something wrong (see BUGS). To add your own files to the files to be updated in this fashion, you can add them to the checkoutlist administrative file (see checkoutlist).

By default, the modules file behaves as described above. If the modules file is very large, storing it as a flat text file may make looking up modules slow (I'm not sure whether this is as much of a concern now as when CVSNT first evolved this feature; I haven't seen benchmarks). Therefore, by making appropriate edits to the CVSNT source code one can store the modules file in a database which implements the ndbm interface, such as Berkeley db or GDBM. If this option is in use, then the modules database will be stored in the files modules.db, modules.pag, and/or modules.dir.

For information on the meaning of the various administrative files, see Administrative files.


Node:Working directory storage, Next:, Previous:Repository storage, Up:Repository

How data is stored in the working directory

While we are discussing CVSNT internals which may become visible from time to time, we might as well talk about what CVSNT puts in the CVS directories in the working directories. As with the repository, CVSNT handles this information and one can usually access it via CVSNT commands. But in some cases it may be useful to look at it, and other programs, such as the jCVS graphical user interface or the VC package for emacs, may need to look at it. Such programs should follow the recommendations in this section if they hope to be able to work with other programs which use those files, including future versions of the programs just mentioned and the command-line CVSNT client.

The CVS directory contains several files. Programs which are reading this directory should silently ignore files which are in the directory but which are not documented here, to allow for future expansion.

The files are stored according to the text file convention for the system in question. This means that working directories are not portable between systems with differing conventions for storing text files. This is intentional, on the theory that the files being managed by CVSNT probably will not be portable between such systems either.

Root
This file contains the current CVSNT root, as described in Specifying a repository.
Repository
This file contains the directory within the repository which the current directory corresponds with. It can be either an absolute pathname or a relative pathname; CVSNT has had the ability to read either format since at least version 1.3 or so. The relative pathname is relative to the root, and is the more sensible approach, but the absolute pathname is quite common and implementations should accept either. For example, after the command
          cvs -d :local:/usr/local/cvsroot checkout yoyodyne/tc
          

Root will contain

          :local:/usr/local/cvsroot
          

and Repository will contain either

          /usr/local/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc
          

or

          yoyodyne/tc
          

If the particular working directory does not correspond to a directory in the repository, then Repository should contain CVSROOT/Emptydir.

Entries
This file lists the files and directories in the working directory. The first character of each line indicates what sort of line it is. If the character is unrecognized, programs reading the file should silently skip that line, to allow for future expansion.

If the first character is /, then the format is:

          /name/revision/timestamp[+conflict]/options/tagdate
          

where [ and ] are not part of the entry, but instead indicate that the + and conflict marker are optional. name is the name of the file within the directory. revision is the revision that the file in the working derives from, or 0 for an added file, or - followed by a revision for a removed file. timestamp is the timestamp of the file at the time that CVSNT created it; if the timestamp differs with the actual modification time of the file it means the file has been modified. It is stored in the format used by the ISO C asctime() function (for example, Sun Apr 7 01:29:26 1996). One may write a string which is not in that format, for example, Result of merge, to indicate that the file should always be considered to be modified. This is not a special case; to see whether a file is modified a program should take the timestamp of the file and simply do a string compare with timestamp. If there was a conflict, conflict can be set to the modification time of the file after the file has been written with conflict markers (see Conflicts example). Thus if conflict is subsequently the same as the actual modification time of the file it means that the user has obviously not resolved the conflict. options contains sticky options (for example -kb for a binary file). tagdate contains T followed by a tag name, or D for a date, followed by a sticky tag or date. Note that if timestamp contains a pair of timestamps separated by a space, rather than a single timestamp, you are dealing with a version of CVSNT earlier than CVSNT 1.5 (not documented here).

The timezone on the timestamp in CVS/Entries (local or universal) should be the same as the operating system stores for the timestamp of the file itself. For example, on Unix the file's timestamp is in universal time (UT), so the timestamp in CVS/Entries should be too. On VMS, the file's timestamp is in local time, so CVSNT on VMS should use local time. This rule is so that files do not appear to be modified merely because the timezone changed (for example, to or from summer time).

If the first character of a line in Entries is D, then it indicates a subdirectory. D on a line all by itself indicates that the program which wrote the Entries file does record subdirectories (therefore, if there is such a line and no other lines beginning with D, one knows there are no subdirectories). Otherwise, the line looks like:

          D/name/filler1/filler2/filler3/filler4
          

where name is the name of the subdirectory, and all the filler fields should be silently ignored, for future expansion. Programs which modify Entries files should preserve these fields.

The lines in the Entries file can be in any order.

Entries.Log
This file does not record any information beyond that in Entries, but it does provide a way to update the information without having to rewrite the entire Entries file, including the ability to preserve the information even if the program writing Entries and Entries.Log abruptly aborts. Programs which are reading the Entries file should also check for Entries.Log. If the latter exists, they should read Entries and then apply the changes mentioned in Entries.Log. After applying the changes, the recommended practice is to rewrite Entries and then delete Entries.Log. The format of a line in Entries.Log is a single character command followed by a space followed by a line in the format specified for a line in Entries. The single character command is A to indicate that the entry is being added, R to indicate that the entry is being removed, or any other character to indicate that the entire line in Entries.Log should be silently ignored (for future expansion). If the second character of the line in Entries.Log is not a space, then it was written by an older version of CVSNT (not documented here).

Programs which are writing rather than reading can safely ignore Entries.Log if they so choose.

Entries.Backup
This is a temporary file. Recommended usage is to write a new entries file to Entries.Backup, and then to rename it (atomically, where possible) to Entries.
Entries.Static
The only relevant thing about this file is whether it exists or not. If it exists, then it means that only part of a directory was gotten and CVSNT will not create additional files in that directory. To clear it, use the update command with the -d option, which will get the additional files and remove Entries.Static.
Tag
This file contains per-directory sticky tags or dates. The first character is T for a branch tag, N for a non-branch tag, or D for a date, or another character to mean the file should be silently ignored, for future expansion. This character is followed by the tag or date. Note that per-directory sticky tags or dates are used for things like applying to files which are newly added; they might not be the same as the sticky tags or dates on individual files. For general information on sticky tags and dates, see Sticky tags.
Notify
This file stores notifications (for example, for edit or unedit) which have not yet been sent to the server. Its format is not yet documented here.
Notify.tmp
This file is to Notify as Entries.Backup is to Entries. That is, to write Notify, first write the new contents to Notify.tmp and then (atomically where possible), rename it to Notify.
Base
If watches are in use, then an edit command stores the original copy of the file in the Base directory. This allows the unedit command to operate even if it is unable to communicate with the server.
Baserev
The file lists the revision for each of the files in the Base directory. The format is:
          Bname/rev/expansion
          

where expansion should be ignored, to allow for future expansion.

Baserev.tmp
This file is to Baserev as Entries.Backup is to Entries. That is, to write Baserev, first write the new contents to Baserev.tmp and then (atomically where possible), rename it to Baserev.
Template
This file contains the template specified by the rcsinfo file (see rcsinfo). It is only used by the client; the non-client/server CVSNT consults rcsinfo directly.


Node:Intro administrative files, Next:, Previous:Working directory storage, Up:Repository

The administrative files

The directory $CVSROOT/CVSROOT contains some administrative files. See Administrative files, for a complete description. You can use CVSNT without any of these files, but some commands work better when at least the modules file is properly set up.

The most important of these files is the modules file. It defines all modules in the repository. This is a sample modules file.

     CVSROOT         CVSROOT
     modules         CVSROOT modules
     cvs             gnu/cvs
     rcs             gnu/rcs
     diff            gnu/diff
     tc              yoyodyne/tc
     

The modules file is line oriented. In its simplest form each line contains the name of the module, whitespace, and the directory where the module resides. The directory is a path relative to $CVSROOT. The last four lines in the example above are examples of such lines.

The line that defines the module called modules uses features that are not explained here. See modules, for a full explanation of all the available features.

Editing administrative files

You edit the administrative files in the same way that you would edit any other module. Use cvs checkout CVSROOT to get a working copy, edit it, and commit your changes in the normal way.

It is possible to commit an erroneous administrative file. You can often fix the error and check in a new revision, but sometimes a particularly bad error in the administrative file makes it impossible to commit new revisions.


Node:Multiple repositories, Next:, Previous:Intro administrative files, Up:Repository

Multiple repositories

In some situations it is a good idea to have more than one repository, for instance if you have two development groups that work on separate projects without sharing any code. All you have to do to have several repositories is to specify the appropriate repository, using the CVSROOT environment variable, the -d option to CVSNT, or (once you have checked out a working directory) by simply allowing CVSNT to use the repository that was used to check out the working directory (see Specifying a repository).

The big advantage of having multiple repositories is that they can reside on different servers. With CVS version 1.10, a single command cannot recurse into directories from different repositories. With development versions of CVSNT, you can check out code from multiple servers into your working directory. CVSNT will recurse and handle all the details of making connections to as many server machines as necessary to perform the requested command. Here is an example of how to set up a working directory:

     cvs -d server1:/cvs co dir1
     cd dir1
     cvs -d server2:/root co sdir
     cvs update
     

The cvs co commands set up the working directory, and then the cvs update command will contact server2, to update the dir1/sdir subdirectory, and server1, to update everything else.


Node:Creating a repository, Next:, Previous:Multiple repositories, Up:Repository

Creating a repository

To set up a CVSNT repository, first choose the machine and disk on which you want to store the revision history of the source files. CPU and memory requirements are modest, so most machines should be adequate. For details see Server requirements.

To estimate disk space requirements, if you are importing RCS files from another system, the size of those files is the approximate initial size of your repository, or if you are starting without any version history, a rule of thumb is to allow for the server approximately three times the size of the code to be under CVSNT for the repository (you will eventually outgrow this, but not for a while). On the machines on which the developers will be working, you'll want disk space for approximately one working directory for each developer (either the entire tree or a portion of it, depending on what each developer uses).

The repository should be accessible (directly or via a networked file system) from all machines which want to use CVSNT in server or local mode; the client machines need not have any access to it other than via the CVSNT protocol. It is not possible to use CVSNT to read from a repository which one only has read access to; CVSNT needs to be able to create lock files (see Concurrency).

To create a repository, run the cvs init command. It will set up an empty repository in the CVSNT root specified in the usual way (see Repository). For example,

     cvs -d /usr/local/cvsroot init
     

cvs init is careful to never overwrite any existing files in the repository, so no harm is done if you run cvs init on an already set-up repository.

cvs init will enable history logging; if you don't want that, remove the history file after running cvs init. See history file.


Node:Backing up, Next:, Previous:Creating a repository, Up:Repository

Backing up a repository

There is nothing particularly magical about the files in the repository; for the most part it is possible to back them up just like any other files. However, there are a few issues to consider.

The first is that to be paranoid, one should either not use CVSNT during the backup, or have the backup program lock CVSNT while doing the backup. To not use CVSNT, you might forbid logins to machines which can access the repository, turn off your CVSNT server, or similar mechanisms. The details would depend on your operating system and how you have CVSNT set up. To lock CVSNT, you would create #cvs.rfl locks in each repository directory. See Concurrency, for more on CVSNT locks. Having said all this, if you just back up without any of these precautions, the results are unlikely to be particularly dire. Restoring from backup, the repository might be in an inconsistent state, but this would not be particularly hard to fix manually.

When you restore a repository from backup, assuming that changes in the repository were made after the time of the backup, working directories which were not affected by the failure may refer to revisions which no longer exist in the repository. Trying to run CVSNT in such directories will typically produce an error message. One way to get those changes back into the repository is as follows:


Node:Moving a repository, Next:, Previous:Backing up, Up:Repository

Moving a repository

Just as backing up the files in the repository is pretty much like backing up any other files, if you need to move a repository from one place to another it is also pretty much like just moving any other collection of files.

The main thing to consider is that working directories point to the repository. The simplest way to deal with a moved repository is to just get a fresh working directory after the move. Of course, you'll want to make sure that the old working directory had been checked in before the move, or you figured out some other way to make sure that you don't lose any changes. If you really do want to reuse the existing working directory, it should be possible with manual surgery on the CVS/Repository files. You can see Working directory storage, for information on the CVS/Repository and CVS/Root files, but unless you are sure you want to bother, it probably isn't worth it.


Node:Remote repositories, Previous:Moving a repository, Up:Repository

Remote repositories

Your working copy of the sources can be on a different machine than the repository. Using CVSNT in this manner is known as client/server operation. You run CVSNT on a machine which can mount your working directory, known as the client, and tell it to communicate to a machine which can mount the repository, known as the server. Generally, using a remote repository is just like using a local one, except that the format of the repository name is:

     :method:[[user][:password]@]hostname[:[port]]/path/to/repository
     

Specifying a password in the repository name is not recommended during checkout, since this will cause CVSNT to store a cleartext copy of the password in each created directory. cvs login first instead (see Authentication client).

The details of exactly what needs to be set up depend on how you are connecting to the server.

If method is not specified, and the repository name contains :, then the default is ext or server, depending on your platform; both are described in Connecting via ssh.


Node:Server requirements, Next:, Previous:Remote repositories, Up:Remote repositories

Server requirements

The quick answer to what sort of machine is suitable as a server is that requirements are modest--a server with 32M of memory or even less can handle a fairly large source tree with a fair amount of activity.

The real answer, of course, is more complicated. Estimating the known areas of large memory consumption should be sufficient to estimate memory requirements. There are two such areas documented here; other memory consumption should be small by comparison (if you find that is not the case, let us know, as described in BUGS, so we can update this documentation).

The first area of big memory consumption is large checkouts, when using the CVSNT server. The server consists of two processes for each client that it is serving. Memory consumption on the child process should remain fairly small. Memory consumption on the parent process, particularly if the network connection to the client is slow, can be expected to grow to slightly more than the size of the sources in a single directory, or two megabytes, whichever is larger.

Multiplying the size of each CVSNT server by the number of servers which you expect to have active at one time should give an idea of memory requirements for the server. For the most part, the memory consumed by the parent process probably can be swap space rather than physical memory.

The second area of large memory consumption is diff, when checking in large files. This is required even for binary files. The rule of thumb is to allow about ten times the size of the largest file you will want to check in, although five times may be adequate. For example, if you want to check in a file which is 10 megabytes, you should have 100 megabytes of memory on the machine doing the checkin (the server machine for client/server, or the machine running CVSNT for non-client/server). This can be swap space rather than physical memory. Because the memory is only required briefly, there is no particular need to allow memory for more than one such checkin at a time.

Resource consumption for the client is even more modest--any machine with enough capacity to run the operating system in question should have little trouble.

For information on disk space requirements, see Creating a repository.


Node:Connecting via ssh, Next:, Previous:Server requirements, Up:Remote repositories

Connecting with ssh

CVSNT uses the ssh protocol to perform these operations, so the remote user host needs to have a .rhosts file which grants access to the local user.

For example, suppose you are the user mozart on the local machine toe.example.com, and the server machine is faun.example.org. On faun, put the following line into the file .rhosts in bach's home directory:

     toe.example.com  mozart
     

Then test that ssh is working with

     ssh -l bach faun.example.org 'echo $PATH'
     

There is no need to edit inetd.conf or start a CVSNT server daemon.

On some versions of CVSNT :ssh: protocol is available. This is a builtin ssh client which integrates cvs authentication with ssh security.

At its simplest, this is used like :pserver:, as in:

     cvs -d :ssh:user@machine.example.org:/usr/local/cvs login
     Password: *****
     cvs -d :ssh:user@machine.example.org:/usr/local/cvs co myproject
     

However you can also register your private key with cvs, which it will use instead of a password:

     cvs -d :ssh;key='c:\id_dsa':user@machine.example.org:/usr/local/cvs login
     Password: ******** (if your key has no passphrase, just press enter here)
     cvs -d :ssh:user@machine.example.org:/usr/local/cvs co myproject
     

The keys should be in the following format:

Several programs are available to convert various key formats to OpenSSH format (for example PuttyGen on NT).

:ext: specifies an external ssh program. By default this is ssh but you may specify another program in the CVSROOT using the optional :ext:{program} command. You may alternatively set the CVS_EXT environment variable to invoke another program which can access the remote server (for example, remsh on HP-UX 9 because rsh is something different). It must be a program which can transmit data to and from the server without modifying it

Continuing our example, supposing you want to access the module foo in the repository /usr/local/cvsroot/, on machine faun.example.org, you are ready to go:

     cvs -d :ext:bach@faun.example.org/usr/local/cvsroot checkout foo
     

(The bach@ can be omitted if the username is the same on both the local and remote hosts.)


Node:Password authenticated, Next:, Previous:Connecting via ssh, Up:Remote repositories

Direct connection with password authentication

The CVSNT client can also connect to the server using a password protocol. This is particularly useful if using ssh is not feasible (for example, the server is behind a firewall), and Kerberos also is not available.

To use this method, it is necessary to make some adjustments on both the server and client sides.


Node:Authentication server, Next:, Previous:Password authenticated, Up:Password authenticated
Setting up the server for Authentication

First of all, you probably want to tighten the permissions on the $CVSROOT and $CVSROOT/CVSROOT directories. See Authentication security, for more details.

On Windows NT, on the server side, you must run the cvsservice.exe program which calls the cvs.exe when required. Setup is done using the cvsnt control panel. the rest of this chapter is mostly Unix related.

On Unix, on the server side, the file /etc/inetd.conf needs to be edited so inetd knows to run the command cvs authserver when it receives a connection on the right port.

By default, the port number is for pserver is 2401 it would be different for pserver if your client were compiled with CVS_AUTH_PORT defined to something else, though. This can also be sepcified in the CVSROOT variable (see Remote repositories) or overridden with the CVS_CLIENT_PORT environment variable (see Environment variables), or, on NT, set in the cvsnt control panel.

If your inetd allows raw port numbers in /etc/inetd.conf, then the following (all on a single line in inetd.conf) should be sufficient:

     2401  stream  tcp  nowait  root  /usr/local/bin/cvs
     cvs -f --allow-root=/usr/cvsroot authserver
     

You could also use the -T option to specify a temporary directory, or, on NT set this within the cvsnt control panel.

The --allow-root option specifies the allowable CVSROOT directory. Clients which attempt to use a different CVSROOT directory will not be allowed to connect. If there is more than one CVSROOT directory which you want to allow, repeat the option. (Unfortunately, many versions of inetd have very small limits on the number of arguments and/or the total length of the command. The usual solution to this problem is to have inetd run a shell script which then invokes CVSNT with the necessary arguments.)

If your inetd wants a symbolic service name instead of a raw port number, then put this in /etc/services:

     cvspserver      2401/tcp
     

and put cvspserver instead of 2401 or 8003 in inetd.conf.

Once the above is taken care of, restart your inetd, or do whatever is necessary to force it to reread its initialization files.

If you are having trouble setting this up, see Connection.

Because the client stores and transmits passwords in cleartext (almost--see Authentication security, for details), a separate CVSNT password file is generally used, so people don't compromise their regular passwords when they access the repository. This file is $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/passwd (see Intro administrative files). It uses a colon-separated format, similar to /etc/passwd on Unix systems, except that it has fewer fields: CVSNT username, optional password, and an optional system username for CVSNT to run as if authentication succeeds. Here is an example passwd file with five entries:

     anonymous:
     bach:ULtgRLXo7NRxs
     spwang:1sOp854gDF3DY
     melissa:tGX1fS8sun6rY:pubcvs
     qproj:XR4EZcEs0szik:pubcvs
     

(The passwords are encrypted according to the standard Unix crypt() function, so it is possible to paste in passwords directly from regular Unix /etc/passwd files.)

The first line in the example will grant access to any CVSNT client attempting to authenticate as user anonymous, no matter what password they use, including an empty password. (This is typical for sites granting anonymous read-only access; for information on how to do the "read-only" part, see Read-only access.)

The second and third lines will grant access to bach and spwang if they supply their respective plaintext passwords.

The fourth line will grant access to melissa, if she supplies the correct password, but her CVSNT operations will actually run on the server side under the system user pubcvs. Thus, there need not be any system user named melissa, but there must be one named pubcvs.

The fifth line shows that system user identities can be shared: any client who successfully authenticates as qproj will actually run as pubcvs, just as melissa does. That way you could create a single, shared system user for each project in your repository, and give each developer their own line in the $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/passwd file. The CVSNT username on each line would be different, but the system username would be the same. The reason to have different CVSNT usernames is that CVSNT will log their actions under those names: when melissa commits a change to a project, the checkin is recorded in the project's history under the name melissa, not pubcvs. And the reason to have them share a system username is so that you can arrange permissions in the relevant area of the repository such that only that account has write-permission there.

If the system-user field is present, all password-authenticated CVSNT commands run as that user; if no system user is specified, CVSNT simply takes the CVSNT username as the system username and runs commands as that user. In either case, if there is no such user on the system, then the CVSNT operation will fail (regardless of whether the client supplied a valid password).

The password and system-user fields can both be omitted (and if the system-user field is omitted, then also omit the colon that would have separated it from the encrypted password). For example, this would be a valid $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/passwd file:

     anonymous::pubcvs
     fish:rKa5jzULzmhOo:kfogel
     sussman:1sOp854gDF3DY
     

When the password field is omitted or empty, then the client's authentication attempt will succeed with any password, including the empty string. However, the colon after the CVSNT username is always necessary, even if the password is empty.

CVSNT can also fall back to use system authentication. When authenticating a password, the server first checks for the user in the $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/passwd file. If it finds the user, it will use that entry for authentication as described above. But if it does not find the user, or if the CVSNT passwd file does not exist, then the server can try to authenticate the username and password using the operating system's user-lookup routines (this "fallback" behavior can be disabled by setting SystemAuth=no in the CVSNT config file, see config). Be aware, however, that falling back to system authentication might be a security risk: CVSNT operations would then be authenticated with that user's regular login password, and the password flies across the network in plaintext. See Authentication security for more on this.

You can setup the passwd file by logging in to cvs using another method (local, ntserver, sspi) and using the CVSNT passwd command to add new users.


Node:Authentication client, Next:, Previous:Authentication server, Up:Password authenticated
Using the client with password authentication

To run a CVSNT command on a remote repository via the password-authenticating server, one specifies the protocol, optional username, repository host, an optional port number, and path to the repository. For example:

     cvs -d :pserver:faun.example.org:/usr/local/cvsroot checkout someproj
     
     cvs -d :sspi:faun.example.org:/usr/local/cvsroot checkout someproj
     

With certain protcols, unless you're connecting to a public-access repository (i.e., one where that username doesn't require a password), you'll need to supply a password or log in first. Logging in verifies your password with the repository and stores it in a file. It's done with the login command, which will prompt you interactively for the password if you didn't supply one as part of $CVSROOT:

     cvs -d :pserver:bach@faun.example.org:/usr/local/cvsroot login
     CVS password:
     

or

     cvs -d :pserver:bach:p4ss30rd@faun.example.org:/usr/local/cvsroot login
     

After you enter the password, CVSNT verifies it with the server. If the verification succeeds, then that combination of username, host, repository, and password is permanently recorded, so future transactions with that repository won't require you to run cvs login. (If verification fails, CVSNT will exit complaining that the password was incorrect, and nothing will be recorded.)

The records are stored, by default, in the file $HOME/.cvspass (Unix) or the Registry (NT). The format human-readable, and to a degree human-editable, but note that the passwords are not stored in cleartext--they are trivially encoded to protect them from "innocent" compromise (i.e., inadvertent viewing by a system administrator or other non-malicious person).

Once you have logged in, all CVSNT commands using that remote repository and username will authenticate with the stored password. So, for example

     cvs -d :pserver:bach@faun.example.org:/usr/local/cvsroot checkout foo
     

should just work (unless the password changes on the server side, in which case you'll have to re-run cvs login).

Note that if the :pserver: were not present in the repository specification, CVSNT would assume it should use ssh to connect with the server instead (see Connecting via ssh).

Of course, once you have a working copy checked out and are running CVSNT commands from within it, there is no longer any need to specify the repository explicitly, because CVSNT can deduce the repository from the working copy's CVS subdirectory.

The password for a given remote repository can be removed from the CVS_PASSFILE by using the cvs logout command.


Node:Authentication security, Previous:Authentication client, Up:Password authenticated
Security considerations with password authentication

With pserver, the passwords are stored on the client side in a trivial encoding of the cleartext, and transmitted in the same encoding. The encoding is done only to prevent inadvertent password compromises (i.e., a system administrator accidentally looking at the file), and will not prevent even a naive attacker from gaining the password.

With sspi, if CVSNT login is used to gain access to a remote server, the passwords are stored on the client side in the same manner as pserver. However the passwords are never transmitted insecurely over the internet.

With ntserver, no passwords are used and NT domain authentication is used instaead.

With pserver, the separate CVSNT password file (see Authentication server) allows people to use a different password for repository access than for login access. With other protocols the system passwords are used and the password field in the passwd file is ignored.

Once a user has non-read-only access to the repository, she can execute programs on the server system through a variety of means. Thus, repository access implies fairly broad system access as well. It might be possible to modify CVSNT to prevent that, but no one has done so as of this writing.

Note that because the $CVSROOT/CVSROOT directory contains passwd and other files which are used to check security, you must control the permissions on this directory as tightly as the permissions on /etc. The same applies to the $CVSROOT directory itself and any directory above it in the tree. Anyone who has write access to such a directory will have the ability to become any user on the system. Note that these permissions are typically tighter than you would use if you are not using pserver.

In summary, with a password server anyone who gets the password gets repository access (which may imply some measure of general system access as well).

With pserver, the password is available to anyone who can sniff network packets or read a protected (i.e., user read-only) file. Other protocols do not have this problem.


Node:GSSAPI authenticated, Next:, Previous:Password authenticated, Up:Remote repositories

Direct connection with GSSAPI

GSSAPI is a generic interface to network security systems such as Kerberos 5. If you have a working GSSAPI library, you can have CVSNT connect via a direct TCP connection, authenticating with GSSAPI.

To do this, CVSNT needs to be compiled with GSSAPI support; when configuring CVSNT it tries to detect whether GSSAPI libraries using kerberos version 5 are present. You can also use the --with-gssapi flag to configure.

The connection is authenticated using GSSAPI, but the message stream is not authenticated by default. You must use the -a global option to request stream authentication.

The data transmitted is not encrypted by default. Encryption support must be compiled into both the client and the server; use the --enable-encrypt configure option to turn it on. You must then use the -x global option to request encryption.

GSSAPI connections are handled on the server side by the same server which handles the password authentication server; see Authentication server. If you are using a GSSAPI mechanism such as Kerberos which provides for strong authentication, you will probably want to disable the ability to authenticate via cleartext passwords. To do so, create an empty CVSROOT/passwd password file, and set SystemAuth=no in the config file (see config).

The GSSAPI server uses a principal name of cvs/hostname, where hostname is the canonical name of the server host. You will have to set this up as required by your GSSAPI mechanism.

To connect using GSSAPI, use :gserver:. For example,

     cvs -d :gserver:faun.example.org:/usr/local/cvsroot checkout foo
     


Node:Connecting via fork, Next:, Previous:GSSAPI authenticated, Up:Remote repositories

Connecting with fork

This access method allows you to connect to a repository on your local disk via the remote protocol. In other words it does pretty much the same thing as :local:, but various quirks, bugs and the like are those of the remote CVSNT rather than the local CVSNT.

For day-to-day operations you might prefer either :local: or :fork:, depending on your preferences. Of course :fork: comes in particularly handy in testing or debugging cvsnt and the remote protocol. Specifically, we avoid all of the network-related setup/configuration, timeouts, and authentication inherent in the other remote access methods but still create a connection which uses the remote protocol.

To connect using the fork method, use :fork: and the pathname to your local repository. For example:

     cvs -d :fork:/usr/local/cvsroot checkout foo
     


Node:Repository Prefix, Previous:Connecting via fork, Up:Remote repositories

Using -D to set the repository prefix

The -D option allows all the files to be based in some directory. So, for instance, if the command was:

     /usr/local/bin/cvs -L -b /usr/local/bin -D /home/cvs authserver
     

then if the user had the following CVSROOT variable:

     :pserver:myname@hostname:/ver1
     

then the repository would actually be in:

     /home/cvs/ver1
     

This allows the repository to be moved without affecting the user's environment variables. It also makes the user's environment variables shorter and more convenient.

Under NT the repository prefix can be set using the cvsnt control panel.


Node:Security, Next:, Previous:Repository, Up:Top

Security

A remote CVSNT repository can be set up to have its own security system outside of the standard security provided by the system. This allows the administrator to provide CVSNT accounts without having to set up accounts on the system. It also provides some directory-level security.

This feature has only been checked with pserver. It may or may not work with kerberos.

To enable this feature, add the -L option to the invokation from the inetd.conf file. It would be best to run the command as some user besides root that will own the repository.

The provided security will only work at a directory level. Files cannot be individually protected with this feature.


Node:Setting up security, Next:, Previous:Security, Up:Security

How to set up security

Security is rather easy to set up. First setup the inetd.conf file to invoke cvs with the -L option. Changing the base path as described in see Repository Prefix can be very convenient. The command should run as the user that owns the repository (not root). With the -L option, CVSNT will run as the user that invokes it, not the user. In fact, the system user names and passwords are never checked with this option. The built-in password file is the only one used.

Next, running as the user that will own the repository, create the repository. Pick a user name to be the administrator. In the CVSROOT directory, create a passwd file and add the administrator as described in see Authentication server. You have to figure out a clever way of setting the first password, such as using the passwd file on your system to get the first password in for the admin.

Now create a file named admin and put the administrators name in it on the first line. Now check both of these files in using RCS and add them to the checkoutlist file as described in that file's instructions. Don't forget to check out the files again after they have been checked in.

At this point, the administrator is ready to go. Set the environment variable to the repository (using the pserver method) and log in.


Node:User maintenance, Next:, Previous:Setting up security, Up:Security

How to add and delete users

The CVSNT password command can be used to add or delete new users. Only an administrator can do this.

Note that deleting a user does not remove them from any user permissions.


Node:Setting permissions, Next:, Previous:User maintenance, Up:Security

Setting permissions for directories

The owner of a file and the administrator can modify directory permissions. Three permissions are available:

     c - create - create and delete files and directories
     r - read   - retrieve file and look at information
     w - write  - modify files and change information
     n - none   - no access allowed
     

The owner and administrator have all these capabilities. Other users can be granted these capabilities using the CVSNT chacl command. It takes a user name or 'default' and a set of permissions separated by a colon then a list of directories to grant permissions for. So for instance:

     cvs chacl theuser:rw dir1 dir2 dir3
     

will grant the user named theuser read and write access to the three specified directories. Specifying just the user or nothing after the colon will delete all the user's permissions.

To view the current permissions the CVSNT lsacl command can be used. It will show the owner and all the users that have permissions in the given directories.

If the user name default is granted permissions, those permissions will be given to all users of the directory, if not overriden by other entries. This is an easy way to give everyone read access to a directory, for instance. If a users is specifically in the permissions, the default will not be applied to them, just the permissions in their entry.

You can block access to a specific branch by specifying the -r option to the chacl command. This allows you to stop checkins to a specific branch except by certain users, for example during a code freeze.

For a user to have access to a directory, they must have at least read access to all the directories above it. If a user has an 'n' (no access) ACL on a parent directory they cannot be granted access to directories below it.

The owner or a directory can be reassigned using the CVSNT chown command.


Node:Setting up groups, Next:, Previous:Setting permissions, Up:Security

Groups of users can be assigned permissions

Sometime administrators find it easier to maintain permissions on groups of users instead of on individual users. That way, if a group of people have access to a directory, the group can be assigned rights to the directories and the administrator only needs to modify the members of the group to maintain the permissions.

The group file in the CVSROOT directory holds a list of groups. The file has two fields seperated by a colon, the first is the group name, the second is a list of group members, separated by white space, such as:

     group1: user1 user2 user3
     group2: me you dognamedblue
     group3: peter paul mary
     

To set up groups, check out the CVSROOT directory as the admin, create the group file, add the groups, then check it in. Then set up the permissions for the groups, commit the changes, and you are done. It's that easy. You should always access the group file by checking out CVSROOT, accessing it directly on the server can cause problems.


Node:Security files, Next:, Previous:Setting up groups, Up:Security

Files in the repository

Every directory in the repository will contain two security files: the owner file and the perms file. The owner file contains the name of the directory's owner. The perms file contains the permissions for other users. These files will not be checked out in any way, they stay internal to the repository. The repository owner can modify these file if necessary; their format is straightforward.


Node:Passwords, Next:, Previous:Security files, Up:Security

Setting and changing passwords

Users can use the CVSNT passwd command with no parameters to modify their passwords. The administrator can specify a user on the command line to change their password.


Node:Administrators, Next:, Previous:Passwords, Up:Security

Repository administrators

If SystemAuth = Yes the user is considered to be an administrator of they are listed in the CVSROOT/admin file or if they are in the 'Administrators' group (NT) or 'cvsadmin' group (Unix).

If SystemAuth = No only the CVSROOT/admin file is checked.

The CVSROOT/admin file contains a list of usernames who are designated repository administrators, one per line. This file should *not* be put under CVSNT control, as that would be a security risk.


Node:Read-only access, Next:, Previous:Administrators, Up:Security

Read-only repository access

It is possible to grant read-only repository access to people using the password-authenticated server (see Password authenticated). (The other access methods do not have explicit support for read-only users because those methods all assume login access to the repository machine anyway, and therefore the user can do whatever local file permissions allow her to do.)

A user who has read-only access can do only those CVSNT operations which do not modify the repository, except for certain "administrative" files (such as lock files and the history file). It may be desirable to use this feature in conjunction with user-aliasing (see Authentication server).

Unlike with previous versions of CVSNT, read-only users should be able merely to read the repository, and not to execute programs on the server or otherwise gain unexpected levels of access. Or to be more accurate, the known holes have been plugged. Because this feature is new and has not received a comprehensive security audit, you should use whatever level of caution seems warranted given your attitude concerning security.

There are two ways to specify read-only access for a user: by inclusion, and by exclusion.

"Inclusion" means listing that user specifically in the $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/readers file, which is simply a newline-separated list of users. Here is a sample readers file:

     melissa
     splotnik
     jrandom
     

(Don't forget the newline after the last user.)

"Exclusion" means explicitly listing everyone who has write access--if the file

     $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/writers
     

exists, then only those users listed in it have write access, and everyone else has read-only access (of course, even the read-only users still need to be listed in the CVSNT passwd file). The writers file has the same format as the readers file.

Note: if your CVSNT passwd file maps cvs users onto system users (see Authentication server), make sure you deny or grant read-only access using the cvsnt usernames, not the system usernames. That is, the readers and writers files contain cvs usernames, which may or may not be the same as system usernames.

Here is a complete description of the server's behavior in deciding whether to grant read-only or read-write access:

If readers exists, and this user is listed in it, then she gets read-only access. Or if writers exists, and this user is NOT listed in it, then she also gets read-only access (this is true even if readers exists but she is not listed there). Otherwise, she gets full read-write access.

Of course there is a conflict if the user is listed in both files. This is resolved in the more conservative way, it being better to protect the repository too much than too little: such a user gets read-only access.


Node:Server temporary directory, Previous:Read-only access, Up:Security

Temporary directories for the server

While running, the CVSNT server creates temporary directories. They are named

     cvs-servpid
     

where pid is the process identification number of the server. They are located in the directory specified by the TMPDIR environment variable (see Environment variables), the -T global option (see Global options), or failing that /tmp.

In most cases the server will remove the temporary directory when it is done, whether it finishes normally or abnormally. However, there are a few cases in which the server does not or cannot remove the temporary directory, for example:

In cases such as this, you will need to manually remove the cvs-servpid directories. As long as there is no server running with process identification number pid, it is safe to do so.


Node:Starting a new project, Next:, Previous:Security, Up:Top

Starting a project with CVS

Because renaming files and moving them between directories is somewhat inconvenient, the first thing you do when you start a new project should be to think through your file organization. It is not impossible to rename or move files, but it does increase the potential for confusion and CVSNT does have some quirks particularly in the area of renaming directories. See Moving files.

What to do next depends on the situation at hand.


Node:Setting up the files, Next:, Previous:Starting a new project, Up:Starting a new project

Setting up the files

The first step is to create the files inside the repository. This can be done in a couple of different ways.


Node:From files, Next:, Previous:Setting up the files, Up:Setting up the files

Creating a directory tree from a number of files

When you begin using CVSNT, you will probably already have several projects that can be put under CVSNT control. In these cases the easiest way is to use the import command. An example is probably the easiest way to explain how to use it. If the files you want to install in CVSNT reside in wdir, and you want them to appear in the repository as $CVSROOT/yoyodyne/rdir, you can do this:

     $ cd wdir
     $ cvs import -m "Imported sources" yoyodyne/rdir yoyo start
     

Unless you supply a log message with the -m flag, CVSNT starts an editor and prompts for a message. The string yoyo is a vendor tag, and start is a release tag. They may fill no purpose in this context, but since CVSNT requires them they must be present. See Tracking sources, for more information about them.

You can now verify that it worked, and remove your original source directory.

     $ cd ..
     $ cvs checkout yoyodyne/rdir       # Explanation below
     $ diff -r wdir yoyodyne/rdir
     $ rm -r wdir
     

Erasing the original sources is a good idea, to make sure that you do not accidentally edit them in wdir, bypassing CVSNT. Of course, it would be wise to make sure that you have a backup of the sources before you remove them.

The checkout command can either take a module name as argument (as it has done in all previous examples) or a path name relative to $CVSROOT, as it did in the example above.

It is a good idea to check that the permissions CVSNT sets on the directories inside $CVSROOT are reasonable, and that they belong to the proper groups. See File permissions.

If some of the files you want to import are binary, you may want to use the wrappers features to specify which files are binary and which are not. See Wrappers.


Node:From other version control systems, Next:, Previous:From files, Up:Setting up the files

Creating Files From Other Version Control Systems

If you have a project which you are maintaining with another version control system, such as RCS, you may wish to put the files from that project into CVSNT, and preserve the revision history of the files.

From RCS
If you have been using RCS, find the RCS files--usually a file named foo.c will have its RCS file in RCS/foo.c,v (but it could be other places; consult the RCS documentation for details). Then create the appropriate directories in CVSNT if they do not already exist. Then copy the files into the appropriate directories in the CVSNT repository (the name in the repository must be the name of the source file with ,v added; the files go directly in the appropriate directory of the repository, not in an RCS subdirectory). This is one of the few times when it is a good idea to access the CVSNT repository directly, rather than using CVSNT commands. Then you are ready to check out a new working directory.

The RCS file should not be locked when you move it into CVSNT; if it is, CVSNT will have trouble letting you operate on it.

From another version control system
Many version control systems have the ability to export RCS files in the standard format. If yours does, export the RCS files and then follow the above instructions.

Failing that, probably your best bet is to write a script that will check out the files one revision at a time using the command line interface to the other system, and then check the revisions into CVSNT. The sccs2rcs script mentioned below may be a useful example to follow.

From SCCS
There is a script in the contrib directory of the CVSNT source distribution called sccs2rcs which converts SCCS files to RCS files. Note: you must run it on a machine which has both SCCS and RCS installed, and like everything else in contrib it is unsupported (your mileage may vary).
From PVCS
There is a script in the contrib directory of the CVSNT source distribution called pvcs_to_rcs which converts PVCS archives to RCS files. You must run it on a machine which has both PVCS and RCS installed, and like everything else in contrib it is unsupported (your mileage may vary). See the comments in the script for details.


Node:From scratch, Previous:From other version control systems, Up:Setting up the files

Creating a directory tree from scratch

For a new project, the easiest thing to do is probably to create an empty directory structure, like this:

     $ mkdir tc
     $ mkdir tc/man
     $ mkdir tc/testing
     

After that, you use the import command to create the corresponding (empty) directory structure inside the repository:

     $ cd tc
     $ cvs import -m "Created directory structure" yoyodyne/dir yoyo start
     

Then, use add to add files (and new directories) as they appear.

Check that the permissions CVSNT sets on the directories inside $CVSROOT are reasonable.


Node:Defining the module, Previous:Setting up the files, Up:Starting a new project

Defining the module

The next step is to define the module in the modules file. This is not strictly necessary, but modules can be convenient in grouping together related files and directories.

In simple cases these steps are sufficient to define a module.

  1. Get a working copy of the modules file.
              $ cvs checkout CVSROOT/modules
              $ cd CVSROOT
              
  2. Edit the file and insert a line that defines the module. See Intro administrative files, for an introduction. See modules, for a full description of the modules file. You can use the following line to define the module tc:
              tc   yoyodyne/tc
              
  3. Commit your changes to the modules file.
              $ cvs commit -m "Added the tc module." modules
              
  4. Release the modules module.
              $ cd ..
              $ cvs release -d CVSROOT
              


Node:Revisions, Next:, Previous:Starting a new project, Up:Top

Revisions

For many uses of CVSNT, one doesn't need to worry too much about revision numbers; CVSNT assigns numbers such as 1.1, 1.2, and so on, and that is all one needs to know. However, some people prefer to have more knowledge and control concerning how CVSNT assigns revision numbers.

If one wants to keep track of a set of revisions involving more than one file, such as which revisions went into a particular release, one uses a tag, which is a symbolic revision which can be assigned to a numeric revision in each file.


Node:Revision numbers, Next:, Previous:Revisions, Up:Revisions

Revision numbers

Each version of a file has a unique revision number. Revision numbers look like 1.1, 1.2, 1.3.2.2 or even 1.3.2.2.4.5. A revision number always has an even number of period-separated decimal integers. By default revision 1.1 is the first revision of a file. Each successive revision is given a new number by increasing the rightmost number by one. The following figure displays a few revisions, with newer revisions to the right.

            +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
            ! 1.1 !----! 1.2 !----! 1.3 !----! 1.4 !----! 1.5 !
            +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
     

It is also possible to end up with numbers containing more than one period, for example 1.3.2.2. Such revisions represent revisions on branches (see Branching and merging); such revision numbers are explained in detail in Branches and revisions.


Node:Versions revisions releases, Next:, Previous:Revision numbers, Up:Revisions

Versions, revisions and releases

A file can have several versions, as described above. Likewise, a software product can have several versions. A software product is often given a version number such as 4.1.1.

Versions in the first sense are called revisions in this document, and versions in the second sense are called releases. To avoid confusion, the word version is almost never used in this document.


Node:Assigning revisions, Next:, Previous:Versions revisions releases, Up:Revisions

Assigning revisions

By default, CVSNT will assign numeric revisions by leaving the first number the same and incrementing the second number. For example, 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, etc.

When adding a new file, the second number will always be one and the first number will equal the highest first number of any file in that directory. For example, the current directory contains files whose highest numbered revisions are 1.7, 3.1, and 4.12, then an added file will be given the numeric revision 4.1.

Normally there is no reason to care about the revision numbers--it is easier to treat them as internal numbers that CVSNT maintains, and tags provide a better way to distinguish between things like release 1 versus release 2 of your product (see Tags). However, if you want to set the numeric revisions, the -r option to cvs commit can do that. The -r option implies the -f option, in the sense that it causes the files to be committed even if they are not modified.

For example, to bring all your files up to revision 3.0 (including those that haven't changed), you might invoke:

     $ cvs commit -r 3.0
     

Note that the number you specify with -r must be larger than any existing revision number. That is, if revision 3.0 exists, you cannot cvs commit -r 1.3. If you want to maintain several releases in parallel, you need to use a branch (see Branching and merging).


Node:Tags, Next:, Previous:Assigning revisions, Up:Revisions

Tags-Symbolic revisions

The revision numbers live a life of their own. They need not have anything at all to do with the release numbers of your software product. Depending on how you use CVSNT the revision numbers might change several times between two releases. As an example, some of the source files that make up RCS 5.6 have the following revision numbers:

     ci.c            5.21
     co.c            5.9
     ident.c         5.3
     rcs.c           5.12
     rcsbase.h       5.11
     rcsdiff.c       5.10
     rcsedit.c       5.11
     rcsfcmp.c       5.9
     rcsgen.c        5.10
     rcslex.c        5.11
     rcsmap.c        5.2
     rcsutil.c       5.10
     

You can use the tag command to give a symbolic name to a certain revision of a file. You can use the -v flag to the status command to see all tags that a file has, and which revision numbers they represent. Tag names must start with an uppercase or lowercase letter and can contain uppercase and lowercase letters, digits, -, and _. The two tag names BASE and HEAD are reserved for use by CVSNT. It is expected that future names which are special to CVSNT will be specially named, for example by starting with ., rather than being named analogously to BASE and HEAD, to avoid conflicts with actual tag names.

You'll want to choose some convention for naming tags, based on information such as the name of the program and the version number of the release. For example, one might take the name of the program, immediately followed by the version number with . changed to -, so that CVSNT 1.9 would be tagged with the name cvs1-9. If you choose a consistent convention, then you won't constantly be guessing whether a tag is cvs-1-9 or cvs1_9 or what. You might even want to consider enforcing your convention in the taginfo file (see user-defined logging).

The following example shows how you can add a tag to a file. The commands must be issued inside your working directory. That is, you should issue the command in the directory where backend.c resides.

     $ cvs tag rel-0-4 backend.c
     T backend.c
     $ cvs status -v backend.c
     ===================================================================
     File: backend.c         Status: Up-to-date
     
         Version:            1.4     Tue Dec  1 14:39:01 1992
         RCS Version:        1.4     /u/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/backend.c,v
         Sticky Tag:         (none)
         Sticky Date:        (none)
         Sticky Options:     (none)
     
         Existing Tags:
             rel-0-4                     (revision: 1.4)
     
     

For a complete summary of the syntax of cvs tag, including the various options, see Invoking CVS.

There is seldom reason to tag a file in isolation. A more common use is to tag all the files that constitute a module with the same tag at strategic points in the development life-cycle, such as when a release is made.

     $ cvs tag rel-1-0 .
     cvs tag: Tagging .
     T Makefile
     T backend.c
     T driver.c
     T frontend.c
     T parser.c
     

(When you give CVSNT a directory as argument, it generally applies the operation to all the files in that directory, and (recursively), to any subdirectories that it may contain. See Recursive behavior.)

The checkout command has a flag, -r, that lets you check out a certain revision of a module. This flag makes it easy to retrieve the sources that make up release 1.0 of the module tc at any time in the future:

     $ cvs checkout -r rel-1-0 tc
     

This is useful, for instance, if someone claims that there is a bug in that release, but you cannot find the bug in the current working copy.

You can also check out a module as it was at any given date. See checkout options. When specifying -r to any of these commands, you will need beware of sticky tags; see Sticky tags.

When you tag more than one file with the same tag you can think about the tag as "a curve drawn through a matrix of filename vs. revision number." Say we have 5 files with the following revisions:

             file1   file2   file3   file4   file5
     
             1.1     1.1     1.1     1.1  /--1.1*      <-*-  TAG
             1.2*-   1.2     1.2    -1.2*-
             1.3  \- 1.3*-   1.3   / 1.3
             1.4          \  1.4  /  1.4
                           \-1.5*-   1.5
                             1.6
     

At some time in the past, the * versions were tagged. You can think of the tag as a handle attached to the curve drawn through the tagged revisions. When you pull on the handle, you get all the tagged revisions. Another way to look at it is that you "sight" through a set of revisions that is "flat" along the tagged revisions, like this:

             file1   file2   file3   file4   file5
     
                             1.1
                             1.2
                     1.1     1.3                       _
             1.1     1.2     1.4     1.1              /
             1.2*----1.3*----1.5*----1.2*----1.1     (--- <--- Look here
             1.3             1.6     1.3              \_
             1.4                     1.4
                                     1.5
     


Node:Tagging the working directory, Next:, Previous:Tags, Up:Revisions

Specifying what to tag from the working directory

The example in the previous section demonstrates one of the most common ways to choose which revisions to tag. Namely, running the cvs tag command without arguments causes CVSNT to select the revisions which are checked out in the current working directory. For example, if the copy of backend.c in working directory was checked out from revision 1.4, then CVSNT will tag revision 1.4. Note that the tag is applied immediately to revision 1.4 in the repository; tagging is not like modifying a file, or other operations in which one first modifies the working directory and then runs cvs commit to transfer that modification to the repository.

One potentially surprising aspect of the fact that cvs tag operates on the repository is that you are tagging the checked-in revisions, which may differ from locally modified files in your working directory. If you want to avoid doing this by mistake, specify the -c option to cvs tag. If there are any locally modified files, CVSNT will abort with an error before it tags any files:

     $ cvs tag -c rel-0-4
     cvs tag: backend.c is locally modified
     cvs [tag aborted]: correct the above errors first!
     


Node:Tagging by date/tag, Next:, Previous:Tagging the working directory, Up:Revisions

Specifying what to tag by date or revision

The cvs rtag command tags the repository as of a certain date or time (or can be used to tag the latest revision). rtag works directly on the repository contents (it requires no prior checkout and does not look for a working directory).

The following options specify which date or revision to tag. See Common options, for a complete description of them.

-D date
Tag the most recent revision no later than date.
-f
Only useful with the -D date or -r tag flags. If no matching revision is found, use the most recent revision (instead of ignoring the file).
-r tag
Only tag those files that contain existing tag tag.

The cvs tag command also allows one to specify files by revision or date, using the same -r, -D, and -f options. However, this feature is probably not what you want. The reason is that cvs tag chooses which files to tag based on the files that exist in the working directory, rather than the files which existed as of the given tag/date. Therefore, you are generally better off using cvs rtag. The exceptions might be cases like:

     cvs tag -r 1.4 backend.c
     


Node:Modifying tags, Next:, Previous:Tagging by date/tag, Up:Revisions

Deleting, moving, and renaming tags

Normally one does not modify tags. They exist in order to record the history of the repository and so deleting them or changing their meaning would, generally, not be what you want.

However, there might be cases in which one uses a tag temporarily or accidentally puts one in the wrong place. Therefore, one might delete, move, or rename a tag. Warning: the commands in this section are dangerous; they permanently discard historical information and it can difficult or impossible to recover from errors. If you are a CVSNT administrator, you may consider restricting these commands with taginfo (see user-defined logging).

To delete a tag, specify the -d option to either cvs tag or cvs rtag. For example:

     cvs rtag -d rel-0-4 tc
     

deletes the tag rel-0-4 from the module tc.

When we say move a tag, we mean to make the same name point to different revisions. For example, the stable tag may currently point to revision 1.4 of backend.c and perhaps we want to make it point to revision 1.6. To move a tag, specify the -F option to either cvs tag or cvs rtag. For example, the task just mentioned might be accomplished as:

     cvs tag -r 1.6 -F stable backend.c
     

By default CVS doesn't allow moving and deleting branch tags, as this should not be done without understanding the issues that this raises. To override this, specify the -B option on the command line.

When we say rename a tag, we mean to make a different name point to the same revisions as the old tag. For example, one may have misspelled the tag name and want to correct it (hopefully before others are relying on the old spelling). To rename a tag, first create a new tag using the -r option to cvs rtag, and then delete the old name. This leaves the new tag on exactly the same files as the old tag. For example:

     cvs rtag -r old-name-0-4 rel-0-4 tc
     cvs rtag -d old-name-0-4 tc
     


Node:Tagging add/remove, Next:, Previous:Modifying tags, Up:Revisions

Tagging and adding and removing files

The subject of exactly how tagging interacts with adding and removing files is somewhat obscure; for the most part CVSNT will keep track of whether files exist or not without too much fussing. By default, tags are applied to only files which have a revision corresponding to what is being tagged. Files which did not exist yet, or which were already removed, simply omit the tag, and CVSNT knows to treat the absence of a tag as meaning that the file didn't exist as of that tag.

However, this can lose a small amount of information. For example, suppose a file was added and then removed. Then, if the tag is missing for that file, there is no way to know whether the tag refers to the time before the file was added, or the time after it was removed. If you specify the -r option to cvs rtag, then CVSNT tags the files which have been removed, and thereby avoids this problem. For example, one might specify -r HEAD to tag the head.

On the subject of adding and removing files, the cvs rtag command has a -a option which means to clear the tag from removed files that would not otherwise be tagged. For example, one might specify this option in conjunction with -F when moving a tag. If one moved a tag without -a, then the tag in the removed files might still refer to the old revision, rather than reflecting the fact that the file had been removed. I don't think this is necessary if -r is specified, as noted above.


Node:Sticky tags, Previous:Tagging add/remove, Up:Revisions

Sticky tags

Sometimes a working copy's revision has extra data associated with it, for example it might be on a branch (see Branching and merging), or restricted to versions prior to a certain date by checkout -D or update -D. Because this data persists - that is, it applies to subsequent commands in the working copy - we refer to it as sticky.

Most of the time, stickiness is an obscure aspect of CVSNT that you don't need to think about. However, even if you don't want to use the feature, you may need to know something about sticky tags (for example, how to avoid them!).

You can use the status command to see if any sticky tags or dates are set:

     $ cvs status driver.c
     ===================================================================
     File: driver.c          Status: Up-to-date
     
         Version:            1.7.2.1 Sat Dec  5 19:35:03 1992
         RCS Version:        1.7.2.1 /u/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/driver.c,v
         Sticky Tag:         rel-1-0-patches (branch: 1.7.2)
         Sticky Date:        (none)
         Sticky Options:     (none)
     
     

The sticky tags will remain on your working files until you delete them with cvs update -A. The -A option retrieves the version of the file from the head of the trunk, and forgets any sticky tags, dates, or options.

The most common use of sticky tags is to identify which branch one is working on, as described in Accessing branches. However, non-branch sticky tags have uses as well. For example, suppose that you want to avoid updating your working directory, to isolate yourself from possibly destabilizing changes other people are making. You can, of course, just refrain from running cvs update. But if you want to avoid updating only a portion of a larger tree, then sticky tags can help. If you check out a certain revision (such as 1.4) it will become sticky. Subsequent cvs update commands will not retrieve the latest revision until you reset the tag with cvs update -A. Likewise, use of the -D option to update or checkout sets a sticky date, which, similarly, causes that date to be used for future retrievals.

People often want to retrieve an old version of a file without setting a sticky tag. This can be done with the -p option to checkout or update, which sends the contents of the file to standard output. For example:

     $ cvs update -p -r 1.1 file1 >file1
     ===================================================================
     Checking out file1
     RCS:  /tmp/cvs-sanity/cvsroot/first-dir/Attic/file1,v
     VERS: 1.1
     ***************
     $
     

However, this isn't the easiest way, if you are asking how to undo a previous checkin (in this example, put file1 back to the way it was as of revision 1.1). In that case you are better off using the -j option to update; for further discussion see Merging two revisions.


Node:Branching and merging, Next:, Previous:Revisions, Up:Top

Branching and merging

CVSNT allows you to isolate changes onto a separate line of development, known as a branch. When you change files on a branch, those changes do not appear on the main trunk or other branches.

Later you can move changes from one branch to another branch (or the main trunk) by merging. Merging involves first running cvs update -j, to merge the changes into the working directory. You can then commit that revision, and thus effectively copy the changes onto another branch.


Node:Branches motivation, Next:, Previous:Branching and merging, Up:Branching and merging

What branches are good for

Suppose that release 1.0 of tc has been made. You are continuing to develop tc, planning to create release 1.1 in a couple of months. After a while your customers start to complain about a fatal bug. You check out release 1.0 (see Tags) and find the bug (which turns out to have a trivial fix). However, the current revision of the sources are in a state of flux and are not expected to be stable for at least another month. There is no way to make a bugfix release based on the newest sources.

The thing to do in a situation like this is to create a branch on the revision trees for all the files that make up release 1.0 of tc. You can then make modifications to the branch without disturbing the main trunk. When the modifications are finished you can elect to either incorporate them on the main trunk, or leave them on the branch.


Node:Creating a branch, Next:, Previous:Branches motivation, Up:Branching and merging

Creating a branch

You can create a branch with tag -b; for example, assuming you're in a working copy:

     $ cvs tag -b rel-1-0-patches
     

This splits off a branch based on the current revisions in the working copy, assigning that branch the name rel-1-0-patches.

It is important to understand that branches get created in the repository, not in the working copy. Creating a branch based on current revisions, as the above example does, will not automatically switch the working copy to be on the new branch. For information on how to do that, see Accessing branches.

You can also create a branch without reference to any working copy, by using rtag:

     $ cvs rtag -b -r rel-1-0 rel-1-0-patches tc
     

-r rel-1-0 says that this branch should be rooted at the revision that corresponds to the tag rel-1-0. It need not be the most recent revision - it's often useful to split a branch off an old revision (for example, when fixing a bug in a past release otherwise known to be stable).

As with tag, the -b flag tells rtag to create a branch (rather than just a symbolic revision name). Note that the numeric revision number that matches rel-1-0 will probably be different from file to file.

So, the full effect of the command is to create a new branch - named rel-1-0-patches - in module tc, rooted in the revision tree at the point tagged by rel-1-0.


Node:Accessing branches, Next:, Previous:Creating a branch, Up:Branching and merging

Accessing branches

You can retrieve a branch in one of two ways: by checking it out fresh from the repository, or by switching an existing working copy over to the branch.

To check out a branch from the repository, invoke checkout with the -r flag, followed by the tag name of the branch (see Creating a branch):

     $ cvs checkout -r rel-1-0-patches tc
     

Or, if you already have a working copy, you can switch it to a given branch with update -r:

     $ cvs update -r rel-1-0-patches tc
     

or equivalently:

     $ cd tc
     $ cvs update -r rel-1-0-patches
     

It does not matter if the working copy was originally on the main trunk or on some other branch - the above command will switch it to the named branch. And similarly to a regular update command, update -r merges any changes you have made, notifying you of conflicts where they occur.

Once you have a working copy tied to a particular branch, it remains there until you tell it otherwise. This means that changes checked in from the working copy will add new revisions on that branch, while leaving the main trunk and other branches unaffected.

To find out what branch a working copy is on, you can use the status command. In its output, look for the field named Sticky tag (see Sticky tags) - that's CVSNT's way of telling you the branch, if any, of the current working files:

     $ cvs status -v driver.c backend.c
     ===================================================================
     File: driver.c          Status: Up-to-date
     
         Version:            1.7     Sat Dec  5 18:25:54 1992
         RCS Version:        1.7     /u/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/driver.c,v
         Sticky Tag:         rel-1-0-patches (branch: 1.7.2)
         Sticky Date:        (none)
         Sticky Options:     (none)
     
         Existing Tags:
             rel-1-0-patches             (branch: 1.7.2)
             rel-1-0                     (revision: 1.7)
     
     ===================================================================
     File: backend.c         Status: Up-to-date
     
         Version:            1.4     Tue Dec  1 14:39:01 1992
         RCS Version:        1.4     /u/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/backend.c,v
         Sticky Tag:         rel-1-0-patches (branch: 1.4.2)
         Sticky Date:        (none)
         Sticky Options:     (none)
     
         Existing Tags:
             rel-1-0-patches             (branch: 1.4.2)
             rel-1-0                     (revision: 1.4)
             rel-0-4                     (revision: 1.4)
     
     

Don't be confused by the fact that the branch numbers for each file are different (1.7.2 and 1.4.2 respectively). The branch tag is the same, rel-1-0-patches, and the files are indeed on the same branch. The numbers simply reflect the point in each file's revision history at which the branch was made. In the above example, one can deduce that driver.c had been through more changes than backend.c before this branch was created.

See Branches and revisions for details about how branch numbers are constructed.


Node:Branches and revisions, Next:, Previous:Accessing branches, Up:Branching and merging

Branches and revisions

Ordinarily, a file's revision history is a linear series of increments (see Revision numbers):

            +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
            ! 1.1 !----! 1.2 !----! 1.3 !----! 1.4 !----! 1.5 !
            +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
     

However, CVSNT is not limited to linear development. The revision tree can be split into branches, where each branch is a self-maintained line of development. Changes made on one branch can easily be moved back to the main trunk.

Each branch has a branch number, consisting of an odd number of period-separated decimal integers. The branch number is created by appending an integer to the revision number where the corresponding branch forked off. Having branch numbers allows more than one branch to be forked off from a certain revision.

All revisions on a branch have revision numbers formed by appending an ordinal number to the branch number. The following figure illustrates branching with an example.

                                                           +-------------+
                                Branch 1.2.2.3.2 ->        ! 1.2.2.3.2.1 !
                                                         / +-------------+
                                                        /
                                                       /
                      +---------+    +---------+    +---------+
     Branch 1.2.2 -> _! 1.2.2.1 !----! 1.2.2.2 !----! 1.2.2.3 !
                    / +---------+    +---------+    +---------+
                   /
                  /
     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
     ! 1.1 !----! 1.2 !----! 1.3 !----! 1.4 !----! 1.5 !  <- The main trunk
     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
                     !
                     !
                     !   +---------+    +---------+    +---------+
     Branch 1.2.4 -> +---! 1.2.4.1 !----! 1.2.4.2 !----! 1.2.4.3 !
                         +---------+    +---------+    +---------+
     

The exact details of how the branch number is constructed is not something you normally need to be concerned about, but here is how it works: When CVSNT creates a branch number it picks the first unused even integer, starting with 2. So when you want to create a branch from revision 6.4 it will be numbered 6.4.2. All branch numbers ending in a zero (such as 6.4.0) are used internally by CVSNT (see Magic branch numbers). The branch 1.1.1 has a special meaning. See Tracking sources.


Node:Magic branch numbers, Next:, Previous:Branches and revisions, Up:Branching and merging

Magic branch numbers

This section describes a CVSNT feature called magic branches. For most purposes, you need not worry about magic branches; CVSNT handles them for you. However, they are visible to you in certain circumstances, so it may be useful to have some idea of how it works.

Externally, branch numbers consist of an odd number of dot-separated decimal integers. See Revision numbers. That is not the whole truth, however. For efficiency reasons CVSNT sometimes inserts an extra 0 in the second rightmost position (1.2.4 becomes 1.2.0.4, 8.9.10.11.12 becomes 8.9.10.11.0.12 and so on).

CVSNT does a pretty good job at hiding these so called magic branches, but in a few places the hiding is incomplete:

You can use the admin command to reassign a symbolic name to a branch the way RCS expects it to be. If R4patches is assigned to the branch 1.4.2 (magic branch number 1.4.0.2) in file numbers.c you can do this:

     $ cvs admin -NR4patches:1.4.2 numbers.c
     

It only works if at least one revision is already committed on the branch. Be very careful so that you do not assign the tag to the wrong number. (There is no way to see how the tag was assigned yesterday).


Node:Merging a branch, Next:, Previous:Magic branch numbers, Up:Branching and merging

Merging an entire branch

You can merge changes made on a branch into your working copy by giving the -j branchname flag to the update subcommand. With one -j branchname option it merges the changes made between the point where the branch was last merged and newest revision on that branch (into your working copy).

If you wish to revert to the older CVS behaviour of merging from the point the branch forked, specify the -b option.

If you are updating from an Unix CVS server of older CVSNT server that doesn't support merge points, then the merge will always be done from the branch point.

The -j stands for "join".

Consider this revision tree:

     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
     ! 1.1 !----! 1.2 !----! 1.3 !----! 1.4 !      <- The main trunk
     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
                     !
                     !
                     !   +---------+    +---------+
     Branch R1fix -> +---! 1.2.2.1 !----! 1.2.2.2 !
                         +---------+    +---------+
     

The branch 1.2.2 has been given the tag (symbolic name) R1fix. The following example assumes that the module mod contains only one file, m.c.

     $ cvs checkout mod               # Retrieve the latest revision, 1.4
     
     $ cvs update -j R1fix m.c        # Merge all changes made on the branch,
                                      # i.e. the changes between revision 1.2
                                      # and 1.2.2.2, into your working copy
                                      # of the file.
     
     $ cvs commit -m "Included R1fix" # Create revision 1.5.
     

A conflict can result from a merge operation. If that happens, you should resolve it before committing the new revision. See Conflicts example.

If your source files contain keywords (see Keyword substitution), you might be getting more conflicts than strictly necessary. See Merging and keywords, for information on how to avoid this.

The checkout command also supports the -j branchname flag. The same effect as above could be achieved with this:

     $ cvs checkout -j R1fix mod
     $ cvs commit -m "Included R1fix"
     

It should be noted that update -j tagname will also work but may not produce the desired result. See Merging adds and removals, for more.


Node:Merging more than once, Next:, Previous:Merging a branch, Up:Branching and merging

Merging from a branch several times

Continuing our example, the revision tree now looks like this:

     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
     ! 1.1 !----! 1.2 !----! 1.3 !----! 1.4 !----! 1.5 !   <- The main trunk
     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
                     !                           *
                     !                          *
                     !   +---------+    +---------+
     Branch R1fix -> +---! 1.2.2.1 !----! 1.2.2.2 !
                         +---------+    +---------+
     

where the starred line represents the merge from the R1fix branch to the main trunk, as just discussed.

Now suppose that development continues on the R1fix branch:

     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
     ! 1.1 !----! 1.2 !----! 1.3 !----! 1.4 !----! 1.5 !   <- The main trunk
     +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+    +-----+
                     !                           *
                     !                          *
                     !   +---------+    +---------+    +---------+
     Branch R1fix -> +---! 1.2.2.1 !----! 1.2.2.2 !----! 1.2.2.3 !
                         +---------+    +---------+    +---------+
     

and then you want to merge those new changes onto the main trunk. If you just use the cvs update -j R1fix m.c command again, CVSNT will attempt to merge again the changes which you have already merged, which can have undesirable side effects.

So instead you need to specify that you only want to merge the changes on the branch which have not yet been merged into the trunk. To do that you specify two -j options, and CVSNT merges the changes from the first revision to the second revision. For example, in this case the simplest way would be

     cvs update -j 1.2.2.2 -j R1fix m.c    # Merge changes from 1.2.2.2 to the
                                           # head of the R1fix branch
     

The problem with this is that you need to specify the 1.2.2.2 revision manually. A slightly better approach might be to use the date the last merge was done:

     cvs update -j R1fix:yesterday -j R1fix m.c
     

Better yet, tag the R1fix branch after every merge into the trunk, and then use that tag for subsequent merges:

     cvs update -j merged_from_R1fix_to_trunk -j R1fix m.c
     


Node:Merging two revisions, Next:, Previous:Merging more than once, Up:Branching and merging

Merging differences between any two revisions

With two -j revision flags, the update (and checkout) command can merge the differences between any two revisions into your working file.

     $ cvs update -j 1.5 -j 1.3 backend.c
     

will undo all changes made between revision 1.3 and 1.5. Note the order of the revisions!

If you try to use this option when operating on multiple files, remember that the numeric revisions will probably be very different between the various files. You almost always use symbolic tags rather than revision numbers when operating on multiple files.

Specifying two -j options can also undo file removals or additions. For example, suppose you have a file named file1 which existed as revision 1.1, and you then removed it (thus adding a dead revision 1.2). Now suppose you want to add it again, with the same contents it had previously. Here is how to do it:

     $ cvs update -j 1.2 -j 1.1 file1
     U file1
     $ cvs commit -m test
     Checking in file1;
     /tmp/cvs-sanity/cvsroot/first-dir/file1,v  <--  file1
     new revision: 1.3; previous revision: 1.2
     done
     $
     


Node:Merging adds and removals, Next:, Previous:Merging two revisions, Up:Branching and merging

Merging can add or remove files

If the changes which you are merging involve removing or adding some files, update -j will reflect such additions or removals.

For example:

     cvs update -A
     touch a b c
     cvs add a b c ; cvs ci -m "added" a b c
     cvs tag -b branchtag
     cvs update -r branchtag
     touch d ; cvs add d
     rm a ; cvs rm a
     cvs ci -m "added d, removed a"
     cvs update -A
     cvs update -jbranchtag
     

After these commands are executed and a cvs commit is done, file a will be removed and file d added in the main branch.

Note that using a single static tag (-j tagname) rather than a dynamic tag (-j branchname) to merge changes from a branch will usually not remove files which were removed on the branch since CVSNT does not automatically add static tags to dead revisions. The exception to this rule occurs when a static tag has been attached to a dead revision manually. Use the branch tag to merge all changes from the branch or use two static tags as merge endpoints to be sure that all intended changes are propogated in the merge.


Node:Merging and keywords, Previous:Merging adds and removals, Up:Branching and merging

Merging and keywords

If you merge files containing keywords (see Keyword substitution), you will normally get numerous conflicts during the merge, because the keywords are expanded differently in the revisions which you are merging.

Therefore, you will often want to specify the -kk (see Substitution modes) switch to the merge command line. By substituting just the name of the keyword, not the expanded value of that keyword, this option ensures that the revisions which you are merging will be the same as each other, and avoid spurious conflicts.

For example, suppose you have a file like this:

            +---------+
           _! 1.1.2.1 !   <-  br1
          / +---------+
         /
        /
     +-----+    +-----+
     ! 1.1 !----! 1.2 !
     +-----+    +-----+
     

and your working directory is currently on the trunk (revision 1.2). Then you might get the following results from a merge:

     $ cat file1
     key $Revision: 1.2 $
     . . .
     $ cvs update -j br1
     U file1
     RCS file: /cvsroot/first-dir/file1,v
     retrieving revision 1.1
     retrieving revision 1.1.2.1
     Merging differences between 1.1 and 1.1.2.1 into file1
     rcsmerge: warning: conflicts during merge
     $ cat file1
     <<<<<<< file1
     key $Revision: 1.2 $
     =======
     key $Revision: 1.1.2.1 $
     >>>>>>> 1.1.2.1
     . . .
     

What happened was that the merge tried to merge the differences between 1.1 and 1.1.2.1 into your working directory. So, since the keyword changed from Revision: 1.1 to Revision: 1.1.2.1, CVSNT tried to merge that change into your working directory, which conflicted with the fact that your working directory had contained Revision: 1.2.

Here is what happens if you had used -kk:

     $ cat file1
     key $Revision: 1.2 $
     . . .
     $ cvs update -kk -j br1
     U file1
     RCS file: /cvsroot/first-dir/file1,v
     retrieving revision 1.1
     retrieving revision 1.1.2.1
     Merging differences between 1.1 and 1.1.2.1 into file1
     $ cat file1
     key $Revision$
     . . .
     

What is going on here is that revision 1.1 and 1.1.2.1 both expand as plain Revision, and therefore merging the changes between them into the working directory need not change anything. Therefore, there is no conflict.

There is, however, one major caveat with using -kk on merges. Namely, it overrides whatever keyword expansion mode CVSNT would normally have used. In particular, this is a problem if the mode had been -kb for a binary file. Therefore, if your repository contains binary files, you will need to deal with the conflicts rather than using -kk.


Node:Recursive behavior, Next:, Previous:Branching and merging, Up:Top

Recursive behavior

Almost all of the subcommands of CVSNT work recursively when you specify a directory as an argument. For instance, consider this directory structure:

           $HOME
             |
             +--tc
             |   |
                 +--CVS
                 |      (internal CVSNT files)
                 +--Makefile
                 +--backend.c
                 +--driver.c
                 +--frontend.c
                 +--parser.c
                 +--man
                 |    |
                 |    +--CVS
                 |    |  (internal CVSNT files)
                 |    +--tc.1
                 |
                 +--testing
                      |
                      +--CVS
                      |  (internal CVSNT files)
                      +--testpgm.t
                      +--test2.t
     

If tc is the current working directory, the following is true:

If no arguments are given to update it will update all files in the current working directory and all its subdirectories. In other words, . is a default argument to update. This is also true for most of the CVSNT subcommands, not only the update command.

The recursive behavior of the CVSNT subcommands can be turned off with the -l option. Conversely, the -R option can be used to force recursion if -l is specified in ~/.cvsrc (see cvsrc).

     $ cvs update -l         # Don't update files in subdirectories
     


Node:Adding and removing, Next:, Previous:Recursive behavior, Up:Top

Adding, removing, and renaming files and directories

In the course of a project, one will often add new files. Likewise with removing or renaming, or with directories. The general concept to keep in mind in all these cases is that instead of making an irreversible change you want CVSNT to record the fact that a change has taken place, just as with modifying an existing file. The exact mechanisms to do this in CVSNT vary depending on the situation.


Node:Adding files, Next:, Previous:Adding and removing, Up:Adding and removing

Adding files to a directory

To add a new file to a directory, follow these steps.

You can also use the add command to add a new directory.

Unlike most other commands, the add command is not recursive. You cannot even type cvs add foo/bar! Instead, you have to

     $ cd foo
     $ cvs add bar
     

cvs add [-k kflag] [-m message] files ... Command

Schedule files to be added to the repository. The files or directories specified with add must already exist in the current directory. To add a whole new directory hierarchy to the source repository (for example, files received from a third-party vendor), use the import command instead. See import.

The added files are not placed in the source repository until you use commit to make the change permanent. Doing an add on a file that was removed with the remove command will undo the effect of the remove, unless a commit command intervened. See Removing files, for an example.

The -k option specifies the default way that this file will be checked out; for more information see Substitution modes.

The -m option specifies a description for the file. This description appears in the history log (if it is enabled, see history file). It will also be saved in the version history inside the repository when the file is committed. The log command displays this description. The description can be changed using admin -t. See admin. If you omit the -m description flag, an empty string will be used. You will not be prompted for a description.

For example, the following commands add the file backend.c to the repository:

     $ cvs add backend.c
     $ cvs commit -m "Early version. Not yet compilable." backend.c
     

When you add a file it is added only on the branch which you are working on (see Branching and merging). You can later merge the additions to another branch if you want (see Merging adds and removals).


Node:Removing files, Next:, Previous:Adding files, Up:Adding and removing

Removing files

Directories change. New files are added, and old files disappear. Still, you want to be able to retrieve an exact copy of old releases.

Here is what you can do to remove a file, but remain able to retrieve old revisions:

When you commit the removal of the file, CVSNT records the fact that the file no longer exists. It is possible for a file to exist on only some branches and not on others, or to re-add another file with the same name later. CVSNT will correctly create or not create the file, based on the -r and -D options specified to checkout or update.

cvs remove [options] files ... Command

Schedule file(s) to be removed from the repository (files which have not already been removed from the working directory are not processed). This command does not actually remove the file from the repository until you commit the removal. For a full list of options, see Invoking CVS.

Here is an example of removing several files:

     $ cd test
     $ rm *.c
     $ cvs remove
     cvs remove: Removing .
     cvs remove: scheduling a.c for removal
     cvs remove: scheduling b.c for removal
     cvs remove: use 'cvs commit' to remove these files permanently
     $ cvs ci -m "Removed unneeded files"
     cvs commit: Examining .
     cvs commit: Committing .
     

As a convenience you can remove the file and cvs remove it in one step, by specifying the -f option. For example, the above example could also be done like this:

     $ cd test
     $ cvs remove -f *.c
     cvs remove: scheduling a.c for removal
     cvs remove: scheduling b.c for removal
     cvs remove: use 'cvs commit' to remove these files permanently
     $ cvs ci -m "Removed unneeded files"
     cvs commit: Examining .
     cvs commit: Committing .
     

If you execute remove for a file, and then change your mind before you commit, you can undo the remove with an add command.

     $ ls
     CVS   ja.h  oj.c
     $ rm oj.c
     $ cvs remove oj.c
     cvs remove: scheduling oj.c for removal
     cvs remove: use 'cvs commit' to remove this file permanently
     $ cvs add oj.c
     U oj.c
     cvs add: oj.c, version 1.1.1.1, resurrected
     

If you realize your mistake before you run the remove command you can use update to resurrect the file:

     $ rm oj.c
     $ cvs update oj.c
     cvs update: warning: oj.c was lost
     U oj.c
     

When you remove a file it is removed only on the branch which you are working on (see Branching and merging). You can later merge the removals to another branch if you want (see Merging adds and removals).


Node:Removing directories, Next:, Previous:Removing files, Up:Adding and removing

Removing directories

In concept removing directories is somewhat similar to removing files--you want the directory to not exist in your current working directories, but you also want to be able to retrieve old releases in which the directory existed.

The way that you remove a directory is to remove all the files in it. You don't remove the directory itself; there is no way to do that. Instead you specify the -P option to cvs update or cvs checkout, which will cause CVSNT to remove empty directories from working directories. (Note that cvs export always removes empty directories.) Probably the best way to do this is to always specify -P; if you want an empty directory then put a dummy file (for example .keepme) in it to prevent -P from removing it.

Note that -P is implied by the -r or -D options of checkout. This way CVSNT will be able to correctly create the directory or not depending on whether the particular version you are checking out contains any files in that directory.


Node:Moving files, Next:, Previous:Removing directories, Up:Adding and removing

Moving and renaming files

Moving files to a different directory or renaming them is not difficult, but some of the ways in which this works may be non-obvious. (Moving or renaming a directory is even harder. See Moving directories.).

The examples below assume that the file old is renamed to new.


Node:Outside, Next:, Previous:Moving files, Up:Moving files

The Normal way to Rename

The normal way to move a file is to copy old to new, and then issue the normal CVSNT commands to remove old from the repository, and add new to it.

     $ mv old new
     $ cvs remove old
     $ cvs add new
     $ cvs commit -m "Renamed old to new" old new
     

This is the simplest way to move a file, it is not error-prone, and it preserves the history of what was done. Note that to access the history of the file you must specify the old or the new name, depending on what portion of the history you are accessing. For example, cvs log old will give the log up until the time of the rename.

When new is committed its revision numbers will start again, usually at 1.1, so if that bothers you, use the -r rev option to commit. For more information see Assigning revisions.


Node:Inside, Next:, Previous:Outside, Up:Moving files

Moving the history file

This method is more dangerous, since it involves moving files inside the repository. Read this entire section before trying it out!

     $ cd $CVSROOT/dir
     $ mv old,v new,v
     

Advantages:

Disadvantages:


Node:Rename by copying, Previous:Inside, Up:Moving files

Copying the history file

This way also involves direct modifications to the repository. It is safe, but not without drawbacks.

     # Copy the RCS file inside the repository
     $ cd $CVSROOT/dir
     $ cp old,v new,v
     # Remove the old file
     $ cd ~/dir
     $ rm old
     $ cvs remove old
     $ cvs commit old
     # Remove all tags from new
     $ cvs update new
     $ cvs log new             # Remember the non-branch tag names
     $ cvs tag -d tag1 new
     $ cvs tag -d tag2 new
     ...
     

By removing the tags you will be able to check out old revisions.

Advantages:

Disadvantages:


Node:Moving directories, Previous:Moving files, Up:Adding and removing

Moving and renaming directories

The normal way to rename or move a directory is to rename or move each file within it as described in Outside. Then check out with the -P option, as described in Removing directories.

If you really want to hack the repository to rename or delete a directory in the repository, you can do it like this:

  1. Inform everyone who has a checked out copy of the directory that the directory will be renamed. They should commit all their changes, and remove their working copies, before you take the steps below.
  2. Rename the directory inside the repository.
              $ cd $CVSROOT/parent-dir
              $ mv old-dir new-dir
              
  3. Fix the CVSNT administrative files, if necessary (for instance if you renamed an entire module).
  4. Tell everyone that they can check out again and continue working.

If someone had a working copy the CVSNT commands will cease to work for him, until he removes the directory that disappeared inside the repository.

It is almost always better to move the files in the directory instead of moving the directory. If you move the directory you are unlikely to be able to retrieve old releases correctly, since they probably depend on the name of the directories.


Node:History browsing, Next:, Previous:Adding and removing, Up:Top

History browsing

Once you have used CVSNT to store a version control history--what files have changed when, how, and by whom, there are a variety of mechanisms for looking through the history.


Node:log messages, Next:, Previous:History browsing, Up:History browsing

Log messages

Whenever you commit a file you specify a log message.

To look through the log messages which have been specified for every revision which has been committed, use the cvs log command (see log).


Node:history database, Next:, Previous:log messages, Up:History browsing

The history database

You can use the history file (see history file) to log various CVSNT actions. To retrieve the information from the history file, use the cvs history command (see history).

Note: you can control what is logged to this file by using the LogHistory keyword in the CVSROOT/config file (see config).


Node:user-defined logging, Next:, Previous:history database, Up:History browsing

User-defined logging

You can customize CVSNT to log various kinds of actions, in whatever manner you choose. These mechanisms operate by executing a script at various times. The script might append a message to a file listing the information and the programmer who created it, or send mail to a group of developers, or, perhaps, post a message to a particular newsgroup. To log commits, use the loginfo file (see loginfo). To log commits, checkouts, exports, and tags, respectively, you can also use the -i, -o, -e, and -t options in the modules file. For a more flexible way of giving notifications to various users, which requires less in the way of keeping centralized scripts up to date, use the cvs watch add command (see Getting Notified); this command is useful even if you are not using cvs watch on.

The taginfo file defines programs to execute when someone executes a tag or rtag command. The taginfo file has the standard form for administrative files (see Administrative files), where each line is a regular expression followed by a command to execute. The arguments passed to the command are, in order, the tagname, operation (add for tag, mov for tag -F, and del for tag -d), repository, and any remaining are pairs of filename revision. A non-zero exit of the filter program will cause the tag to be aborted.

Here is an example of using taginfo to log tag and rtag commands. In the taginfo file put:

     ALL /usr/local/cvsroot/CVSROOT/loggit
     

Where /usr/local/cvsroot/CVSROOT/loggit contains the following script:

     #!/bin/sh
     echo "$@" >>/home/kingdon/cvsroot/CVSROOT/taglog
     


Node:annotate, Previous:user-defined logging, Up:History browsing

Annotate command

cvs annotate [-flR] [-r rev|-D date] files ... Command

For each file in files, print the head revision of the trunk, together with information on the last modification for each line. For example:

          $ cvs annotate ssfile
          Annotations for ssfile
          ***************
          1.1          (mary     27-Mar-96): ssfile line 1
          1.2          (joe      28-Mar-96): ssfile line 2
          

The file ssfile currently contains two lines. The ssfile line 1 line was checked in by mary on March 27. Then, on March 28, joe added a line ssfile line 2, without modifying the ssfile line 1 line. This report doesn't tell you anything about lines which have been deleted or replaced; you need to use cvs diff for that (see diff).

The options to cvs annotate are listed in Invoking CVS, and can be used to select the files and revisions to annotate. The options are described in more detail in Common options.


Node:Binary files, Next:, Previous:History browsing, Up:Top

Handling binary files

The most common use for CVSNT is to store text files. With text files, CVSNT can merge revisions, display the differences between revisions in a human-visible fashion, and other such operations. However, if you are willing to give up a few of these abilities, CVSNT can store binary files. For example, one might store a web site in CVSNT including both text files and binary images.


Node:Binary why, Next:, Previous:Binary files, Up:Binary files

The issues with binary files

While the need to manage binary files may seem obvious if the files that you customarily work with are binary, putting them into version control does present some additional issues.

One basic function of version control is to show the differences between two revisions. For example, if someone else checked in a new version of a file, you may wish to look at what they changed and determine whether their changes are good. For text files, CVSNT provides this functionality via the cvs diff command. For binary files, it may be possible to extract the two revisions and then compare them with a tool external to CVSNT (for example, word processing software often has such a feature). If there is no such tool, one must track changes via other mechanisms, such as urging people to write good log messages, and hoping that the changes they actually made were the changes that they intended to make.

Another ability of a version control system is the ability to merge two revisions. For CVSNT this happens in two contexts. The first is when users make changes in separate working directories (see Multiple developers). The second is when one merges explicitly with the update -j command (see Branching and merging).

In the case of text files, CVSNT can merge changes made independently, and signal a conflict if the changes conflict. With binary files, the best that CVSNT can do is present the two different copies of the file, and leave it to the user to resolve the conflict. The user may choose one copy or the other, or may run an external merge tool which knows about that particular file format, if one exists. Note that having the user merge relies primarily on the user to not accidentally omit some changes, and thus is potentially error prone.

If this process is thought to be undesirable, the best choice may be to avoid merging. To avoid the merges that result from separate working directories, see the discussion of reserved checkouts (file locking) in Multiple developers. To avoid the merges resulting from branches, restrict use of branches.


Node:Binary howto, Previous:Binary why, Up:Binary files

How to store binary files

There are two issues with using CVSNT to store binary files. The first is that CVSNT by default converts line endings between the canonical form in which they are stored in the repository (linefeed only), and the form appropriate to the operating system in use on the client (for example, carriage return followed by line feed for Windows NT).

The second is that a binary file might happen to contain data which looks like a keyword (see Keyword substitution), so keyword expansion must be turned off.

The -kb option available with some CVSNT commands insures that neither line ending conversion nor keyword expansion will be done.

Here is an example of how you can create a new file using the -kb flag:

     $ echo '$Id$' > kotest
     $ cvs add -kb -m"A test file" kotest
     $ cvs ci -m"First checkin; contains a keyword" kotest
     

If a file accidentally gets added without -kb, one can use the cvs admin command to recover. For example:

     $ echo '$Id$' > kotest
     $ cvs add -m"A test file" kotest
     $ cvs ci -m"First checkin; contains a keyword" kotest
     $ cvs admin -kb kotest
     $ cvs update -A kotest
     # For non-unix systems:
     # Copy in a good copy of the file from outside CVS
     $ cvs commit -m "make it binary" kotest
     

When you check in the file kotest the file is not preserved as a binary file, because you did not check it in as a binary file. The cvs admin -kb command sets the default keyword substitution method for this file, but it does not alter the working copy of the file that you have. If you need to cope with line endings (that is, you are using CVSNT on a non-unix system), then you need to check in a new copy of the file, as shown by the cvs commit command above. On unix, the cvs update -A command suffices.

However, in using cvs admin -k to change the keyword expansion, be aware that the keyword expansion mode is not version controlled. This means that, for example, that if you have a text file in old releases, and a binary file with the same name in new releases, CVSNT provides no way to check out the file in text or binary mode depending on what version you are checking out. There is no good workaround for this problem.

You can also set a default for whether cvs add and cvs import treat a file as binary based on its name; for example you could say that files who names end in .exe are binary. See Wrappers. There is currently no way to have CVSNT detect whether a file is binary based on its contents. The main difficulty with designing such a feature is that it is not clear how to distinguish between binary and non-binary files, and the rules to apply would vary considerably with the operating system.


Node:Multiple developers, Next:, Previous:Binary files, Up:Top

Multiple developers

When more than one person works on a software project things often get complicated. Often, two people try to edit the same file simultaneously. One solution, known as file locking or reserved checkouts, is to allow only one person to edit each file at a time. This is the only solution with some version control systems, including RCS and SCCS. Currently the usual way to get reserved checkouts with CVSNT is the cvs admin -l command (see admin options). This is not as nicely integrated into CVSNT as the watch features, described below, but it seems that most people with a need for reserved checkouts find it adequate. It also may be possible to use the watches features described below, together with suitable procedures (not enforced by software), to avoid having two people edit at the same time.

The default model with CVSNT is known as unreserved checkouts. In this model, developers can edit their own working copy of a file simultaneously. The first person that commits his changes has no automatic way of knowing that another has started to edit it. Others will get an error message when they try to commit the file. They must then use CVSNT commands to bring their working copy up to date with the repository revision. This process is almost automatic.

CVSNT also supports mechanisms which facilitate various kinds of communication, without actually enforcing rules like reserved checkouts do.

The rest of this chapter describes how these various models work, and some of the issues involved in choosing between them.


Node:File status, Next:, Previous:Multiple developers, Up:Multiple developers

File status

Based on what operations you have performed on a checked out file, and what operations others have performed to that file in the repository, one can classify a file in a number of states. The states, as reported by the status command, are:

Up-to-date
The file is identical with the latest revision in the repository for the branch in use.
Locally Modified
You have edited the file, and not yet committed your changes.
Locally Added
You have added the file with add, and not yet committed your changes.
Locally Removed
You have removed the file with remove, and not yet committed your changes.
Needs Checkout
Someone else has committed a newer revision to the repository. The name is slightly misleading; you will ordinarily use update rather than checkout to get that newer revision.
Needs Patch
Like Needs Checkout, but the CVSNT server will send a patch rather than the entire file. Sending a patch or sending an entire file accomplishes the same thing.
Needs Merge
Someone else has committed a newer revision to the repository, and you have also made modifications to the file.
File had conflicts on merge
This is like Locally Modified, except that a previous update command gave a conflict. If you have not already done so, you need to resolve the conflict as described in Conflicts example.
Unknown
CVSNT doesn't know anything about this file. For example, you have created a new file and have not run add.

To help clarify the file status, status also reports the Working revision which is the revision that the file in the working directory derives from, and the Repository revision which is the latest revision in the repository for the branch in use.

The options to status are listed in Invoking CVS. For information on its Sticky tag and Sticky date output, see Sticky tags. For information on its Sticky options output, see the -k option in update options.

You can think of the status and update commands as somewhat complementary. You use update to bring your files up to date, and you can use status to give you some idea of what an update would do (of course, the state of the repository might change before you actually run update). In fact, if you want a command to display file status in a more brief format than is displayed by the status command, you can invoke

     $ cvs -n -q update
     

The -n option means to not actually do the update, but merely to display statuses; the -q option avoids printing the name of each directory. For more information on the update command, and these options, see Invoking CVS.


Node:Updating a file, Next:, Previous:File status, Up:Multiple developers

Bringing a file up to date

When you want to update or merge a file, use the update command. For files that are not up to date this is roughly equivalent to a checkout command: the newest revision of the file is extracted from the repository and put in your working directory.

Your modifications to a file are never lost when you use update. If no newer revision exists, running update has no effect. If you have edited the file, and a newer revision is available, CVSNT will merge all changes into your working copy.

For instance, imagine that you checked out revision 1.4 and started editing it. In the meantime someone else committed revision 1.5, and shortly after that revision 1.6. If you run update on the file now, CVSNT will incorporate all changes between revision 1.4 and 1.6 into your file.

If any of the changes between 1.4 and 1.6 were made too close to any of the changes you have made, an overlap occurs. In such cases a warning is printed, and the resulting file includes both versions of the lines that overlap, delimited by special markers. See update, for a complete description of the update command.


Node:Conflicts example, Next:, Previous:Updating a file, Up:Multiple developers

Conflicts example

Suppose revision 1.4 of driver.c contains this:

     #include <stdio.h>
     
     void main()
     {
         parse();
         if (nerr == 0)
             gencode();
         else
             fprintf(stderr, "No code generated.\n");
         exit(nerr == 0 ? 0 : 1);
     }
     

Revision 1.6 of driver.c contains this:

     #include <stdio.h>
     
     int main(int argc,
              char **argv)
     {
         parse();
         if (argc != 1)
         {
             fprintf(stderr, "tc: No args expected.\n");
             exit(1);
         }
         if (nerr == 0)
             gencode();
         else
             fprintf(stderr, "No code generated.\n");
         exit(!!nerr);
     }
     

Your working copy of driver.c, based on revision 1.4, contains this before you run cvs update:

     #include <stdlib.h>
     #include <stdio.h>
     
     void main()
     {
         init_scanner();
         parse();
         if (nerr == 0)
             gencode();
         else
             fprintf(stderr, "No code generated.\n");
         exit(nerr == 0 ? EXIT_SUCCESS : EXIT_FAILURE);
     }
     

You run cvs update:

     $ cvs update driver.c
     RCS file: /usr/local/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/driver.c,v
     retrieving revision 1.4
     retrieving revision 1.6
     Merging differences between 1.4 and 1.6 into driver.c
     rcsmerge warning: overlaps during merge
     cvs update: conflicts found in driver.c
     C driver.c
     

CVSNT tells you that there were some conflicts. Your original working file is saved unmodified in .#driver.c.1.4. The new version of driver.c contains this:

     #include <stdlib.h>
     #include <stdio.h>
     
     int main(int argc,
              char **argv)
     {
         init_scanner();
         parse();
         if (argc != 1)
         {
             fprintf(stderr, "tc: No args expected.\n");
             exit(1);
         }
         if (nerr == 0)
             gencode();
         else
             fprintf(stderr, "No code generated.\n");
     <<<<<<< driver.c
         exit(nerr == 0 ? EXIT_SUCCESS : EXIT_FAILURE);
     =======
         exit(!!nerr);
     >>>>>>> 1.6
     }
     

Note how all non-overlapping modifications are incorporated in your working copy, and that the overlapping section is clearly marked with <<<<<<<, ======= and >>>>>>>.

You resolve the conflict by editing the file, removing the markers and the erroneous line. Suppose you end up with this file:

     #include <stdlib.h>
     #include <stdio.h>
     
     int main(int argc,
              char **argv)
     {
         init_scanner();
         parse();
         if (argc != 1)
         {
             fprintf(stderr, "tc: No args expected.\n");
             exit(1);
         }
         if (nerr == 0)
             gencode();
         else
             fprintf(stderr, "No code generated.\n");
         exit(nerr == 0 ? EXIT_SUCCESS : EXIT_FAILURE);
     }
     

You can now go ahead and commit this as revision 1.7.

     $ cvs commit -m "Initialize scanner. Use symbolic exit values." driver.c
     Checking in driver.c;
     /usr/local/cvsroot/yoyodyne/tc/driver.c,v  <--  driver.c
     new revision: 1.7; previous revision: 1.6
     done
     

For your protection, CVSNT will refuse to check in a file if a conflict occurred and you have not resolved the conflict. Currently to resolve a conflict, you must change the timestamp on the file. In previous versions of CVSNT, you also needed to insure that the file contains no conflict markers. Because your file may legitimately contain conflict markers (that is, occurrences of >>>>>>> at the start of a line that don't mark a conflict), the current version of CVSNT will print a warning and proceed to check in the file.

If you use release 1.04 or later of pcl-cvs (a GNU Emacs front-end for CVSNT) you can use an Emacs package called emerge to help you resolve conflicts. See the documentation for pcl-cvs.


Node:Informing others, Next:, Previous:Conflicts example, Up:Multiple developers

Informing others about commits

It is often useful to inform others when you commit a new revision of a file. The -i option of the modules file, or the loginfo file, can be used to automate this process. See modules. See loginfo. You can use these features of CVSNT to, for instance, instruct CVSNT to mail a message to all developers, or post a message to a local newsgroup.


Node:Concurrency, Next:, Previous:Informing others, Up:Multiple developers

Several developers simultaneously attempting to run CVS

If several developers try to run CVSNT at the same time, one may get the following message:

     [11:43:23] waiting for bach's lock in /usr/local/cvsroot/foo
     

CVSNT will try again every 30 seconds, and either continue with the operation or print the message again, if it still needs to wait. If a lock seems to stick around for an undue amount of time, find the person holding the lock and ask them about the cvs command they are running. If they aren't running a cvs command, look in the repository directory mentioned in the message and remove files which they own whose names start with #cvs.rfl, #cvs.wfl, or #cvs.lock.

Note that these locks are to protect CVSNT's internal data structures and have no relationship to the word lock in the sense used by RCS--which refers to reserved checkouts (see Multiple developers).

Any number of people can be reading from a given repository at a time; only when someone is writing do the locks prevent other people from reading or writing.

CVSNT supports 'Atomic Commits' which enable the following:

     If someone commits some changes in one cvs command,
     then an update by someone else will either get all the
     changes, or none of them.
     

By default this does not occur. For example, given the files

     a/one.c
     a/two.c
     b/three.c
     b/four.c
     

if someone runs

     cvs ci a/two.c b/three.c
     

and someone else runs cvs update at the same time, the person running update might get only the change to b/three.c and not the change to a/two.c.

If you enable Atomic Commits on a repository (see config), then the person running cvs update will either get the whole commit or none of it.


Node:Watches, Next:, Previous:Concurrency, Up:Multiple developers

Mechanisms to track who is editing files

For many groups, use of CVSNT in its default mode is perfectly satisfactory. Users may sometimes go to check in a modification only to find that another modification has intervened, but they deal with it and proceed with their check in. Other groups prefer to be able to know who is editing what files, so that if two people try to edit the same file they can choose to talk about who is doing what when rather than be surprised at check in time. The features in this section allow such coordination, while retaining the ability of two developers to edit the same file at the same time.

For maximum benefit developers should use cvs edit (not chmod) to make files read-write to edit them, and cvs release (not rm) to discard a working directory which is no longer in use, but CVSNT is not able to enforce this behavior.


Node:Setting a watch, Next:, Previous:Watches, Up:Watches

Telling CVS to watch certain files

To enable the watch features, you first specify that certain files are to be watched.

cvs watch on [-lR] files ... Command

Specify that developers should run cvs edit before editing files. CVSNT will create working copies of files read-only, to remind developers to run the cvs edit command before working on them.

If files includes the name of a directory, CVSNT arranges to watch all files added to the corresponding repository directory, and sets a default for files added in the future; this allows the user to set notification policies on a per-directory basis. The contents of the directory are processed recursively, unless the -l option is given. The -R option can be used to force recursion if the -l option is set in ~/.cvsrc (see cvsrc).

If files is omitted, it defaults to the current directory.

cvs watch off [-lR] files ... Command

Do not create files read-only on checkout; thus, developers will not be reminded to use cvs edit and cvs unedit.

The files and options are processed as for cvs watch on.


Node:Getting Notified, Next:, Previous:Setting a watch, Up:Watches

Telling CVS to notify you

You can tell CVSNT that you want to receive notifications about various actions taken on a file. You can do this without using cvs watch on for the file, but generally you will want to use cvs watch on, so that developers use the cvs edit command.

cvs watch add [-a action] [-lR] files ... Command

Add the current user to the list of people to receive notification of work done on files.

The -a option specifies what kinds of events CVSNT should notify the user about. action is one of the following:


edit
Another user has applied the cvs edit command (described below) to a file.
unedit
Another user has applied the cvs unedit command (described below) or the cvs release command to a file, or has deleted the file and allowed cvs update to recreate it.
commit
Another user has committed changes to a file.
all
All of the above.
none
None of the above. (This is useful with cvs edit, described below.)

The -a option may appear more than once, or not at all. If omitted, the action defaults to all.

The files and options are processed as for the cvs watch commands.

cvs watch remove [-a action] [-lR] files ... Command

Remove a notification request established using cvs watch add; the arguments are the same. If the -a option is present, only watches for the specified actions are removed.

When the conditions exist for notification, CVSNT calls the notify administrative file. Edit notify as one edits the other administrative files (see Intro administrative files). This file follows the usual conventions for administrative files (see syntax), where each line is a regular expression followed by a command to execute. The command should contain a single occurrence of %s which will be replaced by the user to notify; the rest of the information regarding the notification will be supplied to the command on standard input. The standard thing to put in the notify file is the single line:

     ALL mail %s -s "CVS notification"
     

This causes users to be notified by electronic mail.

Note that if you set this up in the straightforward way, users receive notifications on the server machine. One could of course write a notify script which directed notifications elsewhere, but to make this easy, CVSNT allows you to associate a notification address for each user. To do so create a file users in CVSROOT with a line for each user in the format user:value. Then instead of passing the name of the user to be notified to notify, CVSNT will pass the value (normally an email address on some other machine).

CVSNT does not notify you for your own changes. Currently this check is done based on whether the user name of the person taking the action which triggers notification matches the user name of the person getting notification. In fact, in general, the watches features only track one edit by each user. It probably would be more useful if watches tracked each working directory separately, so this behavior might be worth changing.


Node:Editing files, Next:, Previous:Getting Notified, Up:Watches

How to edit a file which is being watched

Since a file which is being watched is checked out read-only, you cannot simply edit it. To make it read-write, and inform others that you are planning to edit it, use the cvs edit command. Some systems call this a checkout, but CVSNT uses that term for obtaining a copy of the sources (see Getting the source), an operation which those systems call a get or a fetch.

cvs edit [options] files ... Command

Prepare to edit the working files files. CVSNT makes the files read-write, and notifies users who have requested edit notification for any of files.

The cvs edit command accepts the same options as the cvs watch add command, and establishes a temporary watch for the user on files; CVSNT will remove the watch when files are unedited or committed. If the user does not wish to receive notifications, she should specify -a none.

The files and options are processed as for the cvs watch commands.

If the '-c' option is given, then the file is checked for existing editors before the edit can proceed. In this way a reasonable facsimile of 'reserved edits' can be achieved (note however this is a suboptimal way to use CVSNT.

Normally when you are done with a set of changes, you use the cvs commit command, which checks in your changes and returns the watched files to their usual read-only state. But if you instead decide to abandon your changes, or not to make any changes, you can use the cvs unedit command.

cvs unedit [-lR] files ... Command

Abandon work on the working files files, and revert them to the repository versions on which they are based. CVSNT makes those files read-only for which users have requested notification using cvs watch on. CVSNT notifies users who have requested unedit notification for any of files.

The files and options are processed as for the cvs watch commands.

If watches are not in use, the unedit command probably does not work, and the way to revert to the repository version is to remove the file and then use cvs update to get a new copy. The meaning is not precisely the same; removing and updating may also bring in some changes which have been made in the repository since the last time you updated.

When using client/server CVSNT, you can use the cvs edit and cvs unedit commands even if CVSNT is unable to successfully communicate with the server; the notifications will be sent upon the next successful CVSNT command.

Repository administrators can use the 'unedit others' option (-u). Only use this as a last resort as it only does the server side of the unedit.


Node:Watch information, Next:, Previous:Editing files, Up:Watches

Information about who is watching and editing

cvs watchers [-lR] files ... Command

List the users currently watching changes to files. The report includes the files being watched, and the mail address of each watcher.

The files and options are processed as for the cvs watch commands.

cvs editors [-lR] files ... Command

List the users currently working on files. The report includes the mail address of each user, the time when the user began working with the file, and the host and path of the working directory containing the file.

The files and options are processed as for the cvs watch commands.


Node:Watches Compatibility, Previous:Watch information, Up:Watches

Using watches with old versions of CVS

If you use the watch features on a repository, it creates CVS directories in the repository and stores the information about watches in that directory. If you attempt to use CVSNT 1.6 or earlier with the repository, you get an error message such as the following (all on one line):

     cvs update: cannot open CVS/Entries for reading:
     No such file or directory
     

and your operation will likely be aborted. To use the watch features, you must upgrade all copies of CVSNT which use that repository in local or server mode. If you cannot upgrade, use the watch off and watch remove commands to remove all watches, and that will restore the repository to a state which CVSNT 1.6 can cope with.


Node:Choosing a model, Previous:Watches, Up:Multiple developers

Choosing between reserved or unreserved checkouts

Reserved and unreserved checkouts each have pros and cons. Let it be said that a lot of this is a matter of opinion or what works given different groups' working styles, but here is a brief description of some of the issues. There are many ways to organize a team of developers. CVSNT does not try to enforce a certain organization. It is a tool that can be used in several ways.

Reserved checkouts can be very counter-productive. If two persons want to edit different parts of a file, there may be no reason to prevent either of them from doing so. Also, it is common for someone to take out a lock on a file, because they are planning to edit it, but then forget to release the lock.

People, especially people who are familiar with reserved checkouts, often wonder how often conflicts occur if unreserved checkouts are used, and how difficult they are to resolve. The experience with many groups is that they occur rarely and usually are relatively straightforward to resolve.

The rarity of serious conflicts may be surprising, until one realizes that they occur only when two developers disagree on the proper design for a given section of code; such a disagreement suggests that the team has not been communicating properly in the first place. In order to collaborate under any source management regimen, developers must agree on the general design of the system; given this agreement, overlapping changes are usually straightforward to merge.

In some cases unreserved checkouts are clearly inappropriate. If no merge tool exists for the kind of file you are managing (for example word processor files or files edited by Computer Aided Design programs), and it is not desirable to change to a program which uses a mergeable data format, then resolving conflicts is going to be unpleasant enough that you generally will be better off to simply avoid the conflicts instead, by using reserved checkouts.

The watches features described above in Watches can be considered to be an intermediate model between reserved checkouts and unreserved checkouts. When you go to edit a file, it is possible to find out who else is editing it. And rather than having the system simply forbid both people editing the file, it can tell you what the situation is and let you figure out whether it is a problem in that particular case or not. Therefore, for some groups it can be considered the best of both the reserved checkout and unreserved checkout worlds.


Node:Revision management, Next:, Previous:Multiple developers, Up:Top

Revision management

If you have read this far, you probably have a pretty good grasp on what CVSNT can do for you. This chapter talks a little about things that you still have to decide.

If you are doing development on your own using CVSNT you could probably skip this chapter. The questions this chapter takes up become more important when more than one person is working in a repository.


Node:When to commit, Previous:Revision management, Up:Revision management

When to commit?

Your group should decide which policy to use regarding commits. Several policies are possible, and as your experience with CVSNT grows you will probably find out what works for you.

If you commit files too quickly you might commit files that do not even compile. If your partner updates his working sources to include your buggy file, he will be unable to compile the code. On the other hand, other persons will not be able to benefit from the improvements you make to the code if you commit very seldom, and conflicts will probably be more common.

It is common to only commit files after making sure that they can be compiled. Some sites require that the files pass a test suite. Policies like this can be enforced using the commitinfo file (see commitinfo), but you should think twice before you enforce such a convention. By making the development environment too controlled it might become too regimented and thus counter-productive to the real goal, which is to get software written.


Node:Keyword substitution, Next:, Previous:Revision management, Up:Top

Keyword substitution

As long as you edit source files inside a working directory you can always find out the state of your files via cvs status and cvs log. But as soon as you export the files from your development environment it becomes harder to identify which revisions they are.

CVSNT can use a mechanism known as keyword substitution (or keyword expansion) to help identifying the files. Embedded strings of the form $keyword$ and $keyword:...$ in a file are replaced with strings of the form $keyword:value$ whenever you obtain a new revision of the file.


Node:Keyword list, Next:, Previous:Keyword substitution, Up:Keyword substitution

Keyword List

This is a list of the keywords:

$Author$
The login name of the user who checked in the revision.
$Date$
The date and time (UTC) the revision was checked in.
$Header$
A standard header containing the full pathname of the RCS file, the revision number, the date (UTC), the author, the state, and the locker (if locked). Files will normally never be locked when you use CVSNT.
$Id$
Same as $Header$, except that the RCS filename is without a path.
$Name$
Tag name used to check out this file. The keyword is expanded only if one checks out with an explicit tag name. For example, when running the command cvs co -r first, the keyword expands to Name: first.
$Locker$
The login name of the user who locked the revision (empty if not locked, which is the normal case unless cvs admin -l is in use).
$Log$
The log message supplied during commit, preceded by a header containing the RCS filename, the revision number, the author, and the date (UTC). Existing log messages are not replaced. Instead, the new log message is inserted after $Log:...$. Each new line is prefixed with the same string which precedes the $Log keyword. For example, if the file contains
            /* Here is what people have been up to:
             *
             * $Log: frob.c,v $
             * Revision 1.1  1997/01/03 14:23:51  joe
             * Add the superfrobnicate option
             *
             */
          

then additional lines which are added when expanding the $Log keyword will be preceded by * . Unlike previous versions of CVSNT and RCS, the comment leader from the RCS file is not used. The $Log keyword is useful for accumulating a complete change log in a source file, but for several reasons it can be problematic. See Log keyword.

$RCSfile$
The name of the RCS file without a path.
$Revision$
The revision number assigned to the revision.
$Source$
The full pathname of the RCS file.
$State$
The state assigned to the revision. States can be assigned with cvs admin -s--see admin options.


Node:Using keywords, Next:, Previous:Keyword list, Up:Keyword substitution

Using keywords

To include a keyword string you simply include the relevant text string, such as $Id$, inside the file, and commit the file. CVSNT will automatically expand the string as part of the commit operation.

It is common to embed the $Id$ string in the source files so that it gets passed through to generated files. For example, if you are managing computer program source code, you might include a variable which is initialized to contain that string. Or some C compilers may provide a #pragma ident directive. Or a document management system might provide a way to pass a string through to generated files.

The ident command (which is part of the RCS package) can be used to extract keywords and their values from a file. This can be handy for text files, but it is even more useful for extracting keywords from binary files.

     $ ident samp.c
     samp.c:
          $Id: samp.c,v 1.5 1993/10/19 14:57:32 ceder Exp $
     $ gcc samp.c
     $ ident a.out
     a.out:
          $Id: samp.c,v 1.5 1993/10/19 14:57:32 ceder Exp $
     

SCCS is another popular revision control system. It has a command, what, which is very similar to ident and used for the same purpose. Many sites without RCS have SCCS. Since what looks for the character sequence @(#) it is easy to include keywords that are detected by either command. Simply prefix the keyword with the magic SCCS phrase, like this:

     static char *id="@(#) $Id: ab.c,v 1.5 1993/10/19 14:57:32 ceder Exp $";
     


Node:Avoiding substitution, Next:, Previous:Using keywords, Up:Keyword substitution

Avoiding substitution

Keyword substitution has its disadvantages. Sometimes you might want the literal text string $Author$ to appear inside a file without CVSNT interpreting it as a keyword and expanding it into something like $Author: ceder $.

There is unfortunately no way to selectively turn off keyword substitution. You can use -ko (see Substitution modes) to turn off keyword substitution entirely.

In many cases you can avoid using keywords in the source, even though they appear in the final product. For example, the source for this manual contains $@asis{}Author$ whenever the text $Author$ should appear. In nroff and troff you can embed the null-character \& inside the keyword for a similar effect.


Node:Substitution modes, Next:, Previous:Avoiding substitution, Up:Keyword substitution

Substitution modes

Each file has a stored default substitution mode, and each working directory copy of a file also has a substitution mode. The former is set by the -k option to cvs add and cvs admin; the latter is set by the -k or -A options to cvs checkout or cvs update. cvs diff also has a -k option. For some examples, see Binary files, and Merging and keywords.

The modes available are:

-kkv
Generate keyword strings using the default form, e.g. $Revision: 5.7 $ for the Revision keyword.
-kkvl
Like -kkv, except that a locker's name is always inserted if the given revision is currently locked. The locker's name is only relevant if cvs admin -l is in use.
-kk
Generate only keyword names in keyword strings; omit their values. For example, for the Revision keyword, generate the string $Revision$ instead of $Revision: 5.7 $. This option is useful to ignore differences due to keyword substitution when comparing different revisions of a file (see Merging and keywords).
-ko
Generate the old keyword string, present in the working file just before it was checked in. For example, for the Revision keyword, generate the string $Revision: 1.1 $ instead of $Revision: 5.7 $ if that is how the string appeared when the file was checked in.
-kb
Like -ko, but also inhibit conversion of line endings between the canonical form in which they are stored in the repository (linefeed only), and the form appropriate to the operating system in use on the client. For systems, like unix, which use linefeed only to terminate lines, this is the same as -ko. For more information on binary files, see Binary files.
-kv
Generate only keyword values for keyword strings. For example, for the Revision keyword, generate the string 5.7 instead of $Revision: 5.7 $. This can help generate files in programming languages where it is hard to strip keyword delimiters like $Revision: $ from a string. However, further keyword substitution cannot be performed once the keyword names are removed, so this option should be used with care.

One often would like to use -kv with cvs export--see export. But be aware that doesn't handle an export containing binary files correctly.

-ku
When checking out, promote UTF-8 internal format to UCS-2 for unicode compliant applications.
-kr
Checkout in Unix (lf) line ending format rather than native format.


Node:Log keyword, Previous:Substitution modes, Up:Keyword substitution

Problems with the $Log$ keyword.

The $Log$ keyword is somewhat controversial. As long as you are working on your development system the information is easily accessible even if you do not use the $Log$ keyword--just do a cvs log. Once you export the file the history information might be useless anyhow.

A more serious concern is that CVSNT is not good at handling $Log$ entries when a branch is merged onto the main trunk. Conflicts often result from the merging operation.

People also tend to "fix" the log entries in the file (correcting spelling mistakes and maybe even factual errors). If that is done the information from cvs log will not be consistent with the information inside the file. This may or may not be a problem in real life.

It has been suggested that the $Log$ keyword should be inserted last in the file, and not in the files header, if it is to be used at all. That way the long list of change messages will not interfere with everyday source file browsing.


Node:Tracking sources, Next:, Previous:Keyword substitution, Up:Top

Tracking third-party sources

If you modify a program to better fit your site, you probably want to include your modifications when the next release of the program arrives. CVSNT can help you with this task.

In the terminology used in CVSNT, the supplier of the program is called a vendor. The unmodified distribution from the vendor is checked in on its own branch, the vendor branch. CVSNT reserves branch 1.1.1 for this use.

When you modify the source and commit it, your revision will end up on the main trunk. When a new release is made by the vendor, you commit it on the vendor branch and copy the modifications onto the main trunk.

Use the import command to create and update the vendor branch. When you import a new file, the vendor branch is made the `head' revision, so anyone that checks out a copy of the file gets that revision. When a local modification is committed it is placed on the main trunk, and made the `head' revision.


Node:First import, Next:, Previous:Tracking sources, Up:Tracking sources

Importing for the first time

Use the import command to check in the sources for the first time. When you use the import command to track third-party sources, the vendor tag and release tags are useful. The vendor tag is a symbolic name for the branch (which is always 1.1.1, unless you use the -b branch flag--see Multiple vendor branches.). The release tags are symbolic names for a particular release, such as FSF_0_04.

Note that import does not change the directory in which you invoke it. In particular, it does not set up that directory as a CVSNT working directory; if you want to work with the sources import them first and then check them out into a different directory (see Getting the source).

Suppose you have the sources to a program called wdiff in a directory wdiff-0.04, and are going to make private modifications that you want to be able to use even when new releases are made in the future. You start by importing the source to your repository:

     $ cd wdiff-0.04
     $ cvs import -m "Import of FSF v. 0.04" fsf/wdiff FSF_DIST WDIFF_0_04
     

The vendor tag is named FSF_DIST in the above example, and the only release tag assigned is WDIFF_0_04.


Node:Update imports, Next:, Previous:First import, Up:Tracking sources

Updating with the import command

When a new release of the source arrives, you import it into the repository with the same import command that you used to set up the repository in the first place. The only difference is that you specify a different release tag this time.

     $ tar xfz wdiff-0.05.tar.gz
     $ cd wdiff-0.05
     $ cvs import -m "Import of FSF v. 0.05" fsf/wdiff FSF_DIST WDIFF_0_05
     

For files that have not been modified locally, the newly created revision becomes the head revision. If you have made local changes, import will warn you that you must merge the changes into the main trunk, and tell you to use checkout -j to do so.

     $ cvs checkout -jFSF_DIST:yesterday -jFSF_DIST wdiff
     

The above command will check out the latest revision of wdiff, merging the changes made on the vendor branch FSF_DIST since yesterday into the working copy. If any conflicts arise during the merge they should be resolved in the normal way (see Conflicts example). Then, the modified files may be committed.

Using a date, as suggested above, assumes that you do not import more than one release of a product per day. If you do, you can always use something like this instead:

     $ cvs checkout -jWDIFF_0_04 -jWDIFF_0_05 wdiff
     

In this case, the two above commands are equivalent.


Node:Reverting local changes, Next:, Previous:Update imports, Up:Tracking sources

Reverting to the latest vendor release

You can also revert local changes completely and return to the latest vendor release by changing the `head' revision back to the vendor branch on all files. For example, if you have a checked-out copy of the sources in ~/work.d/wdiff, and you want to revert to the vendor's version for all the files in that directory, you would type:

     $ cd ~/work.d/wdiff
     $ cvs admin -bWDIFF .
     

You must specify the -bWDIFF without any space after the -b. See admin options.


Node:Binary files in imports, Next:, Previous:Reverting local changes, Up:Tracking sources

How to handle binary files with cvs import

Use the -k wrapper option to tell import which files are binary. See Wrappers.


Node:Keywords in imports, Next:, Previous:Binary files in imports, Up:Tracking sources

How to handle keyword substitution with cvs import

The sources which you are importing may contain keywords (see Keyword substitution). For example, the vendor may use CVSNT or some other system which uses similar keyword expansion syntax. If you just import the files in the default fashion, then the keyword expansions supplied by the vendor will be replaced by keyword expansions supplied by your own copy of CVSNT. It may be more convenient to maintain the expansions supplied by the vendor, so that this information can supply information about the sources that you imported from the vendor.

To maintain the keyword expansions supplied by the vendor, supply the -ko option to cvs import the first time you import the file. This will turn off keyword expansion for that file entirely, so if you want to be more selective you'll have to think about what you want and use the -k option to cvs update or cvs admin as appropriate.


Node:Multiple vendor branches, Previous:Keywords in imports, Up:Tracking sources

Multiple vendor branches

All the examples so far assume that there is only one vendor from which you are getting sources. In some situations you might get sources from a variety of places. For example, suppose that you are dealing with a project where many different people and teams are modifying the software. There are a variety of ways to handle this, but in some cases you have a bunch of source trees lying around and what you want to do more than anything else is just to all put them in CVSNT so that you at least have them in one place.

For handling situations in which there may be more than one vendor, you may specify the -b option to cvs import. It takes as an argument the vendor branch to import to. The default is -b 1.1.1.

For example, suppose that there are two teams, the red team and the blue team, that are sending you sources. You want to import the red team's efforts to branch 1.1.1 and use the vendor tag RED. You want to import the blue team's efforts to branch 1.1.3 and use the vendor tag BLUE. So the commands you might use are:

     $ cvs import dir RED RED_1-0
     $ cvs import -b 1.1.3 dir BLUE BLUE_1-5
     

Note that if your vendor tag does not match your -b option, CVSNT will not detect this case! For example,

     $ cvs import -b 1.1.3 dir RED RED_1-0
     

Be careful; this kind of mismatch is sure to sow confusion or worse. I can't think of a useful purpose for the ability to specify a mismatch here, but if you discover such a use, don't. CVSNT is likely to make this an error in some future release.


Node:Builds, Next:, Previous:Tracking sources, Up:Top

How your build system interacts with CVS

As mentioned in the introduction, CVSNT does not contain software for building your software from source code. This section describes how various aspects of your build system might interact with CVSNT.

One common question, especially from people who are accustomed to RCS, is how to make their build get an up to date copy of the sources. The answer to this with CVSNT is two-fold. First of all, since CVSNT itself can recurse through directories, there is no need to modify your Makefile (or whatever configuration file your build tool uses) to make sure each file is up to date. Instead, just use two commands, first cvs -q update and then make or whatever the command is to invoke your build tool. Secondly, you do not necessarily want to get a copy of a change someone else made until you have finished your own work. One suggested approach is to first update your sources, then implement, build and test the change you were thinking of, and then commit your sources (updating first if necessary). By periodically (in between changes, using the approach just described) updating your entire tree, you ensure that your sources are sufficiently up to date.

One common need is to record which versions of which source files went into a particular build. This kind of functionality is sometimes called bill of materials or something similar. The best way to do this with CVSNT is to use the tag command to record which versions went into a given build (see Tags).

Using CVSNT in the most straightforward manner possible, each developer will have a copy of the entire source tree which is used in a particular build. If the source tree is small, or if developers are geographically dispersed, this is the preferred solution. In fact one approach for larger projects is to break a project down into smaller separately-compiled subsystems, and arrange a way of releasing them internally so that each developer need check out only those subsystems which are they are actively working on.

Another approach is to set up a structure which allows developers to have their own copies of some files, and for other files to access source files from a central location. Many people have come up with some such a system using features such as the symbolic link feature found in many operating systems, or the VPATH feature found in many versions of make. One build tool which is designed to help with this kind of thing is Odin (see ftp://ftp.cs.colorado.edu/pub/distribs/odin).


Node:Special Files, Next:, Previous:Builds, Up:Top

Special Files

In normal circumstances, CVSNT works only with regular files. Every file in a project is assumed to be persistent; it must be possible to open, read and close them; and so on. CVSNT also ignores file permissions and ownerships, leaving such issues to be resolved by the developer at installation time. In other words, it is not possible to "check in" a device into a repository; if the device file cannot be opened, CVSNT will refuse to handle it. Files also lose their ownerships and permissions during repository transactions.


Node:CVS commands, Next:, Previous:Special Files, Up:Top

Guide to CVS commands

This appendix describes the overall structure of CVSNT commands, and describes some commands in detail (others are described elsewhere; for a quick reference to CVSNT commands, see Invoking CVS).


Node:Structure, Next:, Previous:CVS commands, Up:CVS commands

Overall structure of CVS commands

The overall format of all CVSNT commands is:

     cvs [ cvs_options ] cvs_command [ command_options ] [ command_args ]
     
cvs
The name of the CVSNT program.
cvs_options
Some options that affect all sub-commands of CVSNT. These are described below.
cvs_command
One of several different sub-commands. Some of the commands have aliases that can be used instead; those aliases are noted in the reference manual for that command. There are only two situations where you may omit cvs_command: cvs -H elicits a list of available commands, and cvs -v displays version information on CVSNT itself.
command_options
Options that are specific for the command.
command_args
Arguments to the commands.

There is unfortunately some confusion between cvs_options and command_options. -l, when given as a cvs_option, only affects some of the commands. When it is given as a command_option is has a different meaning, and is accepted by more commands. In other words, do not take the above categorization too seriously. Look at the documentation instead.


Node:Exit status, Next:, Previous:Structure, Up:CVS commands

CVS's exit status

CVSNT can indicate to the calling environment whether it succeeded or failed by setting its exit status. The exact way of testing the exit status will vary from one operating system to another. For example in a unix shell script the $? variable will be 0 if the last command returned a successful exit status, or greater than 0 if the exit status indicated failure.

If CVSNT is successful, it returns a successful status; if there is an error, it prints an error message and returns a failure status. The one exception to this is the cvs diff command. It will return a successful status if it found no differences, or a failure status if there were differences or if there was an error. Because this behavior provides no good way to detect errors, in the future it is possible that cvs diff will be changed to behave like the other CVSNT commands.


Node:cvsrc, Next:, Previous:Exit status, Up:CVS commands

Default options and the ~/.cvsrc and CVSROOT/cvsrc files

There are some command_options that are used so often that you might have set up an alias or some other means to make sure you always specify that option. One example (the one that drove the implementation of the .cvsrc support, actually) is that many people find the default output of the diff command to be very hard to read, and that either context diffs or unidiffs are much easier to understand.

The ~/.cvsrc file is a way that you can add default options to cvs_commands within cvs, instead of relying on aliases or other shell scripts.

The format of the ~/.cvsrc file is simple. The file is searched for a line that begins with the same name as the cvs_command being executed. If a match is found, then the remainder of the line is split up (at whitespace characters) into separate options and added to the command arguments before any options from the command line.

If a command has two names (e.g., checkout and co), the official name, not necessarily the one used on the command line, will be used to match against the file. So if this is the contents of the user's ~/.cvsrc file:

     log -N
     diff -u
     update -P
     checkout -P
     

the command cvs checkout foo would have the -P option added to the arguments, as well as cvs co foo.

With the example file above, the output from cvs diff foobar will be in unidiff format. cvs diff -c foobar will provide context diffs, as usual. Getting "old" format diffs would be slightly more complicated, because diff doesn't have an option to specify use of the "old" format, so you would need cvs -f diff foobar.

In place of the command name you can use cvsnt to specify global options (see Global options). For example the following line in .cvsrc

     cvs -z6
     

causes CVSNT to use compression level 6.

The CVSROOT/cvsrc file on the server contains the default .cvsrc file that is used by all compatible clients. This is merged with the local .cvsrc file and the result behaves as normal.

The CVSROOT/cvsrc file cannot contain global options (see Global options) as it is parsed after the server has started.

Older cvsnt clients and Unix cvs clients will not use the global cvsrc.


Node:Global options, Next:, Previous:cvsrc, Up:CVS commands

Global options

The available cvs_options (that are given to the left of cvs_command) are:

--allow-root=rootdir
Specify legal CVSROOT directory. See Authentication server.
-a
Authenticate all communication between the client and the server. Only has an effect on the CVSNT client. As of this writing, this is only implemented when using a GSSAPI connection (see GSSAPI authenticated). Authentication prevents certain sorts of attacks involving hijacking the active TCP connection. Enabling authentication does not enable encryption.
-b bindir
In CVS 1.9.18 and older, this specified that RCS programs are in the bindir directory. Current versions of CVSNT do not run RCS programs; for compatibility this option is accepted, but it does nothing.
-T tempdir
Use tempdir as the directory where temporary files are located. Overrides the setting of the $TMPDIR environment variable and any precompiled directory. This parameter should be specified as an absolute pathname.
-d cvs_root_directory
Use cvs_root_directory as the root directory pathname of the repository. Overrides the setting of the $CVSROOT environment variable. See Repository.
-e editor
Use editor to enter revision log information. Overrides the setting of the $CVSEDITOR and $EDITOR environment variables. For more information, see Committing your changes.
-f
Do not read the ~/.cvsrc file. This option is most often used because of the non-orthogonality of the CVSNT option set. For example, the cvs log option -N (turn off display of tag names) does not have a corresponding option to turn the display on. So if you have -N in the ~/.cvsrc entry for log, you may need to use -f to show the tag names.
-H
--help
Display usage information about the specified cvs_command (but do not actually execute the command). If you don't specify a command name, cvs -H displays overall help for CVSNT, including a list of other help options.
-l
Do not log the cvs_command in the command history (but execute it anyway). See history, for information on command history.
-n
Do not change any files. Attempt to execute the cvs_command, but only to issue reports; do not remove, update, or merge any existing files, or create any new files.

Note that CVSNT will not necessarily produce exactly the same output as without -n. In some cases the output will be the same, but in other cases CVSNT will skip some of the processing that would have been required to produce the exact same output.

-Q
Cause the command to be really quiet; the command will only generate output for serious problems.
-q
Cause the command to be somewhat quiet; informational messages, such as reports of recursion through subdirectories, are suppressed.
-r
Make new working files read-only. Same effect as if the $CVSREAD environment variable is set (see Environment variables). The default is to make working files writable, unless watches are on (see Watches).
-s variable=value
Set a user variable (see Variables).
-t
Trace program execution; display messages showing the steps of CVSNT activity. Particularly useful with -n to explore the potential impact of an unfamiliar command.
-v

--version
Display version and copyright information for CVSNT.
-w
Make new working files read-write. Overrides the setting of the $CVSREAD environment variable. Files are created read-write by default, unless $CVSREAD is set or -r is given.
-x
Encrypt all communication between the client and the server. Only has an effect on the CVSNT client. As of this writing, this is only implemented when using a GSSAPI connection (see GSSAPI authenticated). Enabling encryption implies that message traffic is also authenticated.
-z gzip-level
Set the compression level. Valid levels are 1 (high speed, low compression) to 9 (low speed, high compression), or 0 to disable compression (the default). Only has an effect on the CVSNT client.


Node:Common options, Next:, Previous:Global options, Up:CVS commands

Common command options

This section describes the command_options that are available across several CVSNT commands. These options are always given to the right of cvs_command. Not all commands support all of these options; each option is only supported for commands where it makes sense. However, when a command has one of these options you can almost always count on the same behavior of the option as in other commands. (Other command options, which are listed with the individual commands, may have different behavior from one CVSNT command to the other).

Warning: the history command is an exception; it supports many options that conflict even with these standard options.

-D date_spec
Use the most recent revision no later than date_spec. date_spec is a single argument, a date description specifying a date in the past.

The specification is sticky when you use it to make a private copy of a source file; that is, when you get a working file using -D, CVSNT records the date you specified, so that further updates in the same directory will use the same date (for more information on sticky tags/dates, see Sticky tags).

-D is available with the checkout, diff, export, history, rdiff, rtag, and update commands. (The history command uses this option in a slightly different way; see history options).

A wide variety of date formats are supported by CVSNT. The most standard ones are ISO8601 (from the International Standards Organization) and the Internet e-mail standard (specified in RFC822 as amended by RFC1123).

ISO8601 dates have many variants but a few examples are:

          1972-09-24
          1972-09-24 20:05
          

There are a lot more ISO8601 date formats, and CVSNT accepts many of them, but you probably don't want to hear the whole long story :-).

In addition to the dates allowed in Internet e-mail itself, CVSNT also allows some of the fields to be omitted. For example:

          24 Sep 1972 20:05
          24 Sep
          

The date is interpreted as being in the local timezone, unless a specific timezone is specified.

These two date formats are preferred. However, CVSNT currently accepts a wide variety of other date formats. They are intentionally not documented here in any detail, and future versions of CVSNT might not accept all of them.

One such format is month/day/year. This may confuse people who are accustomed to having the month and day in the other order; 1/4/96 is January 4, not April 1.

Remember to quote the argument to the -D flag so that your shell doesn't interpret spaces as argument separators. A command using the -D flag can look like this:

          $ cvs diff -D "1 hour ago" cvs.texinfo
          

-f
When you specify a particular date or tag to CVSNT commands, they normally ignore files that do not contain the tag (or did not exist prior to the date) that you specified. Use the -f option if you want files retrieved even when there is no match for the tag or date. (The most recent revision of the file will be used).

Note that even with -f, a tag that you specify must exist (that is, in some file, not necessary in every file). This is so that CVSNT will continue to give an error if you mistype a tag name.

-f is available with these commands: annotate, checkout, export, rdiff, rtag, and update.

Warning: The commit and remove commands also have a -f option, but it has a different behavior for those commands. See commit options, and Removing files.

-k kflag
Alter the default processing of keywords. See Keyword substitution, for the meaning of kflag. Your kflag specification is sticky when you use it to create a private copy of a source file; that is, when you use this option with the checkout or update commands, CVSNT associates your selected kflag with the file, and continues to use it with future update commands on the same file until you specify otherwise.

The -k option is available with the add, checkout, diff, import and update commands.

-l
Local; run only in current working directory, rather than recursing through subdirectories.

Warning: this is not the same as the overall cvs -l option, which you can specify to the left of a cvs command!

Available with the following commands: annotate, checkout, commit, diff, edit, editors, export, log, rdiff, remove, rtag, status, tag, unedit, update, watch, and watchers.

-m message
Use message as log information, instead of invoking an editor.

Available with the following commands: add, commit and import.

-n
Do not run any checkout/commit/tag program. (A program can be specified to run on each of these activities, in the modules database (see modules); this option bypasses it).

Warning: this is not the same as the overall cvs -n option, which you can specify to the left of a cvs command!

Available with the checkout, commit, export, and rtag commands.

-P
Prune empty directories. See Removing directories.
-p
Pipe the files retrieved from the repository to standard output, rather than writing them in the current directory. Available with the checkout and update commands.
-R
Process directories recursively. This is on by default.

Available with the following commands: annotate, checkout, commit, diff, edit, editors, export, rdiff, remove, rtag, status, tag, unedit, update, watch, and watchers.

-r tag
Use the revision specified by the tag argument instead of the default head revision. As well as arbitrary tags defined with the tag or rtag command, two special tags are always available: HEAD refers to the most recent version available in the repository, and BASE refers to the revision you last checked out into the current working directory.

The tag specification is sticky when you use this with checkout or update to make your own copy of a file: CVSNT remembers the tag and continues to use it on future update commands, until you specify otherwise (for more information on sticky tags/dates, see Sticky tags).

The tag can be either a symbolic or numeric tag, as described in Tags, or the name of a branch, as described in Branching and merging.

Specifying the -q global option along with the -r command option is often useful, to suppress the warning messages when the RCS file does not contain the specified tag.

Warning: this is not the same as the overall cvs -r option, which you can specify to the left of a CVSNT command!

-r is available with the checkout, commit, diff, history, export, rdiff, rtag, and update commands.

-W
Specify file names that should be filtered. You can use this option repeatedly. The spec can be a file name pattern of the same type that you can specify in the .cvswrappers file. Available with the following commands: import, and update.


Node:admin, Next:, Previous:Common options, Up:CVS commands

admin--Administration

This is the CVSNT interface to assorted administrative facilities. Some of them have questionable usefulness for CVSNT but exist for historical purposes. Some of the questionable options are likely to disappear in the future. This command does work recursively, so extreme care should be used.

On unix, if there is a group named cvsadmin, only members of that group can run cvs admin (except for the cvs admin -k command, which can be run by anybody). This group should exist on the server, or any system running the non-client/server CVSNT. To disallow cvs admin for all users, create a group with no users in it. On NT, server administrators are able to use the admin command.

See also see Read-only access.


Node:admin options, Previous:admin, Up:admin

admin options

Some of these options have questionable usefulness for CVSNT but exist for historical purposes. Some even make it impossible to use CVSNT until you undo the effect!

-Aoldfile
Might not work together with CVSNT. Append the access list of oldfile to the access list of the RCS file.
-alogins
Might not work together with CVSNT. Append the login names appearing in the comma-separated list logins to the access list of the RCS file.
-b[rev]
Set the default branch to rev. In CVSNT, you normally do not manipulate default branches; sticky tags (see Sticky tags) are a better way to decide which branch you want to work on. There is one reason to run cvs admin -b: to revert to the vendor's version when using vendor branches (see Reverting local changes). There can be no space between -b and its argument.
-cstring
Sets the comment leader to string. The comment leader is not used by current versions of CVSNT or RCS 5.7. Therefore, you can almost surely not worry about it. See Keyword substitution.
-e[logins]
Might not work together with CVSNT. Erase the login names appearing in the comma-separated list logins from the access list of the RCS file. If logins is omitted, erase the entire access list. There can be no space between -e and its argument.
-I
Run interactively, even if the standard input is not a terminal. This option does not work with the client/server CVSNT and is likely to disappear in a future release of CVSNT.
-i
Useless with CVSNT. This creates and initializes a new RCS file, without depositing a revision. With CVSNT, add files with the cvs add command (see Adding files).
-ksubst
Set the default keyword substitution to subst. See Keyword substitution. Giving an explicit -k option to cvs update, cvs export, or cvs checkout overrides this default.
-l[rev]
Lock the revision with number rev. If a branch is given, lock the latest revision on that branch. If rev is omitted, lock the latest revision on the default branch. There can be no space between -l and its argument.

This can be used in conjunction with the rcslock.pl script in the contrib directory of the CVSNT source distribution to provide reserved checkouts (where only one user can be editing a given file at a time). See the comments in that file for details (and see the README file in that directory for disclaimers about the unsupported nature of contrib). According to comments in that file, locking must set to strict (which is the default).

-L
Set locking to strict. Strict locking means that the owner of an RCS file is not exempt from locking for checkin. For use with CVSNT, strict locking must be set; see the discussion under the -l option above.
-mrev:msg
Replace the log message of revision rev with msg.
-Nname[:[rev]]
Act like -n, except override any previous assignment of name. For use with magic branches, see Magic branch numbers.
-nname[:[rev]]
Associate the symbolic name name with the branch or revision rev. It is normally better to use cvs tag or cvs rtag instead. Delete the symbolic name if both : and rev are omitted; otherwise, print an error message if name is already associated with another number. If rev is symbolic, it is expanded before association. A rev consisting of a branch number followed by a . stands for the current latest revision in the branch. A : with an empty rev stands for the current latest revision on the default branch, normally the trunk. For example, cvs admin -nname: associates name with the current latest revision of all the RCS files; this contrasts with cvs admin -nname:$ which associates name with the revision numbers extracted from keyword strings in the corresponding working files.
-orange
Deletes (outdates) the revisions given by range.

Note that this command can be quite dangerous unless you know exactly what you are doing (for example see the warnings below about how the rev1:rev2 syntax is confusing).

If you are short on disc this option might help you. But think twice before using it--there is no way short of restoring the latest backup to undo this command! If you delete different revisions than you planned, either due to carelessness or (heaven forbid) a CVSNT bug, there is no opportunity to correct the error before the revisions are deleted. It probably would be a good idea to experiment on a copy of the repository first.

Specify range in one of the following ways:

rev1::rev2
Collapse all revisions between rev1 and rev2, so that CVSNT only stores the differences associated with going from rev1 to rev2, not intermediate steps. For example, after -o 1.3::1.5 one can retrieve revision 1.3, revision 1.5, or the differences to get from 1.3 to 1.5, but not the revision 1.4, or the differences between 1.3 and 1.4. Other examples: -o 1.3::1.4 and -o 1.3::1.3 have no effect, because there are no intermediate revisions to remove.
::rev
Collapse revisions between the beginning of the branch containing rev and rev itself. The branchpoint and rev are left intact. For example, -o ::1.3.2.6 deletes revision 1.3.2.1, revision 1.3.2.5, and everything in between, but leaves 1.3 and 1.3.2.6 intact.
rev::
Collapse revisions between rev and the end of the branch containing rev. Revision rev is left intact but the head revision is deleted.
rev
Delete the revision rev. For example, -o 1.3 is equivalent to -o 1.2::1.4.
rev1:rev2
Delete the revisions from rev1 to rev2, inclusive, on the same branch. One will not be able to retrieve rev1 or rev2 or any of the revisions in between. For example, the command cvs admin -oR_1_01:R_1_02 . is rarely useful. It means to delete revisions up to, and including, the tag R_1_02. But beware! If there are files that have not changed between R_1_02 and R_1_03 the file will have the same numerical revision number assigned to the tags R_1_02 and R_1_03. So not only will it be impossible to retrieve R_1_02; R_1_03 will also have to be restored from the tapes! In most cases you want to specify rev1::rev2 instead.
:rev
Delete revisions from the beginning of the branch containing rev up to and including rev.
rev:
Delete revisions from revision rev, including rev itself, to the end of the branch containing rev.

None of the revisions to be deleted may have branches or locks.

If any of the revisions to be deleted have symbolic names, and one specifies one of the :: syntaxes, then CVSNT will give an error and not delete any revisions. If you really want to delete both the symbolic names and the revisions, first delete the symbolic names with cvs tag -d, then run cvs admin -o. If one specifies the non-:: syntaxes, then CVSNT will delete the revisions but leave the symbolic names pointing to nonexistent revisions. This behavior is preserved for compatibility with previous versions of CVSNT, but because it isn't very useful, in the future it may change to be like the :: case.

Due to the way CVSNT handles branches rev cannot be specified symbolically if it is a branch. See Magic branch numbers, for an explanation.

Make sure that no-one has checked out a copy of the revision you outdate. Strange things will happen if he starts to edit it and tries to check it back in. For this reason, this option is not a good way to take back a bogus commit; commit a new revision undoing the bogus change instead (see Merging two revisions).

-q
Run quietly; do not print diagnostics.
-sstate[:rev]
Useful with CVSNT. Set the state attribute of the revision rev to state. If rev is a branch number, assume the latest revision on that branch. If rev is omitted, assume the latest revision on the default branch. Any identifier is acceptable for state. A useful set of states is Exp (for experimental), Stab (for stable), and Rel (for released). By default, the state of a new revision is set to Exp when it is created. The state is visible in the output from cvs log (see log), and in the $Log$ and $State$ keywords (see Keyword substitution). Note that CVSNT uses the dead state for its own purposes; to take a file to or from the dead state use commands like cvs remove and cvs add, not cvs admin -s.
-t[file]
Useful with CVSNT. Write descriptive text from the contents of the named file into the RCS file, deleting the existing text. The file pathname may not begin with -. The descriptive text can be seen in the output from cvs log (see log). There can be no space between -t and its argument.

If file is omitted, obtain the text from standard input, terminated by end-of-file or by a line containing . by itself. Prompt for the text if interaction is possible; see -I.

-t-string
Similar to -tfile. Write descriptive text from the string into the RCS file, deleting the existing text. There can be no space between -t and its argument.
-U
Set locking to non-strict. Non-strict locking means that the owner of a file need not lock a revision for checkin. For use with CVSNT, strict locking must be set; see the discussion under the -l option above.
-u[rev]
See the option -l above, for a discussion of using this option with CVSNT. Unlock the revision with number rev. If a branch is given, unlock the latest revision on that branch. If rev is omitted, remove the latest lock held by the caller. Normally, only the locker of a revision may unlock it; somebody else unlocking a revision breaks the lock. This causes the original locker to be sent a commit notification (see Getting Notified). There can be no space between -u and its argument.
-Vn
In previous versions of CVSNT, this option meant to write an RCS file which would be acceptable to RCS version n, but it is now obsolete and specifying it will produce an error.
-xsuffixes
In previous versions of CVSNT, this was documented as a way of specifying the names of the RCS files. However, CVSNT has always required that the RCS files used by CVSNT end in ,v, so this option has never done anything useful.


Node:checkout, Next:, Previous:admin, Up:CVS commands

checkout--Check out sources for editing

Create or update a working directory containing copies of the source files specified by modules. You must execute checkout before using most of the other CVSNT commands, since most of them operate on your working directory.

The modules are either symbolic names for some collection of source directories and files, or paths to directories or files in the repository. The symbolic names are defined in the modules file. See modules.

Depending on the modules you specify, checkout may recursively create directories and populate them with the appropriate source files. You can then edit these source files at any time (regardless of whether other software developers are editing their own copies of the sources); update them to include new changes applied by others to the source repository; or commit your work as a permanent change to the source repository.

Note that checkout is used to create directories. The top-level directory created is always added to the directory where checkout is invoked, and usually has the same name as the specified module. In the case of a module alias, the created sub-directory may have a different name, but you can be sure that it will be a sub-directory, and that checkout will show the relative path leading to each file as it is extracted into your private work area (unless you specify the -Q global option).

The files created by checkout are created read-write, unless the -r option to CVSNT (see Global options) is specified, the CVSREAD environment variable is specified (see Environment variables), or a watch is in effect for that file (see Watches).

Note that running checkout on a directory that was already built by a prior checkout is also permitted. This is similar to specifying the -d option to the update command in the sense that new directories that have been created in the repository will appear in your work area. However, checkout takes a module name whereas update takes a directory name. Also to use checkout this way it must be run from the top level directory (where you originally ran checkout from), so before you run checkout to update an existing directory, don't forget to change your directory to the top level directory.

For the output produced by the checkout command see update output.


Node:checkout options, Next:, Previous:checkout, Up:checkout

checkout options

These standard options are supported by checkout (see Common options, for a complete description of them):

-D date
Use the most recent revision no later than date. This option is sticky, and implies -P. See Sticky tags, for more information on sticky tags/dates.
-f
Only useful with the -D date or -r tag flags. If no matching revision is found, retrieve the most recent revision (instead of ignoring the file).
-k kflag
Process keywords according to kflag. See Keyword substitution. This option is sticky; future updates of this file in this working directory will use the same kflag. The status command can be viewed to see the sticky options. See Invoking CVS, for more information on the status command.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory.
-n
Do not run any checkout program (as specified with the -o option in the modules file; see modules).
-P
Prune empty directories. See Moving directories.
-p
Pipe files to the standard output.
-R
Checkout directories recursively. This option is on by default.
-r tag
Use revision tag. This option is sticky, and implies -P. See Sticky tags, for more information on sticky tags/dates.

In addition to those, you can use these special command options with checkout:

-A
Reset any sticky tags, dates, or -k options. See Sticky tags, for more information on sticky tags/dates.
-c
Copy the module file, sorted, to the standard output, instead of creating or modifying any files or directories in your working directory.
-d dir
Create a directory called dir for the working files, instead of using the module name. In general, using this flag is equivalent to using mkdir dir; cd dir followed by the checkout command without the -d flag.

There is an important exception, however. It is very convenient when checking out a single item to have the output appear in a directory that doesn't contain empty intermediate directories. In this case only, CVSNT tries to "shorten" pathnames to avoid those empty directories.

For example, given a module foo that contains the file bar.c, the command cvs co -d dir foo will create directory dir and place bar.c inside. Similarly, given a module bar which has subdirectory baz wherein there is a file quux.c, the command cvs -d dir co bar/baz will create directory dir and place quux.c inside.

Using the -N flag will defeat this behavior. Given the same module definitions above, cvs co -N -d dir foo will create directories dir/foo and place bar.c inside, while cvs co -N -d dir bar/baz will create directories dir/bar/baz and place quux.c inside.

-j tag
With two -j options, merge changes from the revision specified with the first -j option to the revision specified with the second j option, into the working directory.

With one -j option, merge changes from the ancestor revision to the revision specified with the -j option, into the working directory. The ancestor revision is the common ancestor of the revision which the working directory is based on, and the revision specified in the -j option.

In addition, each -j option can contain an optional date specification which, when used with branches, can limit the chosen revision to one within a specific date. An optional date is specified by adding a colon (:) to the tag: -jSymbolic_Tag:Date_Specifier.

See Branching and merging.

-N
Only useful together with -d dir. With this option, CVSNT will not "shorten" module paths in your working directory when you check out a single module. See the -d flag for examples and a discussion.
-s
Like -c, but include the status of all modules, and sort it by the status string. See modules, for info about the -s option that is used inside the modules file to set the module status.


Node:checkout examples, Previous:checkout options, Up:checkout

checkout examples

Get a copy of the module tc:

     $ cvs checkout tc
     

Get a copy of the module tc as it looked one day ago:

     $ cvs checkout -D yesterday tc
     


Node:commit, Next:, Previous:checkout, Up:CVS commands

commit--Check files into the repository

Use commit when you want to incorporate changes from your working source files into the source repository.

If you don't specify particular files to commit, all of the files in your working current directory are examined. commit is careful to change in the repository only those files that you have really changed. By default (or if you explicitly specify the -R option), files in subdirectories are also examined and committed if they have changed; you can use the -l option to limit commit to the current directory only.

commit verifies that the selected files are up to date with the current revisions in the source repository; it will notify you, and exit without committing, if any of the specified files must be made current first with update (see update). commit does not call the update command for you, but rather leaves that for you to do when the time is right.

When all is well, an editor is invoked to allow you to enter a log message that will be written to one or more logging programs (see modules, and see loginfo) and placed in the RCS file inside the repository. This log message can be retrieved with the log command; see log. You can specify the log message on the command line with the -m message option, and thus avoid the editor invocation, or use the -F file option to specify that the argument file contains the log message.


Node:commit options, Next:, Previous:commit, Up:commit

commit options

These standard options are supported by commit (see Common options, for a complete description of them):

-l
Local; run only in current working directory.
-n
Do not run any module program.
-R
Commit directories recursively. This is on by default.
-r revision
Commit to revision. revision must be either a branch, or a revision on the main trunk that is higher than any existing revision number (see Assigning revisions). You cannot commit to a specific revision on a branch.

commit also supports these options:

-F file
Read the log message from file, instead of invoking an editor.
-f
Note that this is not the standard behavior of the -f option as defined in Common options.

Force CVSNT to commit a new revision even if you haven't made any changes to the file. If the current revision of file is 1.7, then the following two commands are equivalent:

          $ cvs commit -f file
          $ cvs commit -r 1.8 file
          

The -f option disables recursion (i.e., it implies -l). To force CVSNT to commit a new revision for all files in all subdirectories, you must use -f -R.

-m message
Use message as the log message, instead of invoking an editor.
-c
Check for a valid edit on the file before committing. See 'cvs edit'.


Node:commit examples, Previous:commit options, Up:commit

commit examples

Committing to a branch

You can commit to a branch revision (one that has an even number of dots) with the -r option. To create a branch revision, use the -b option of the rtag or tag commands (see Branching and merging). Then, either checkout or update can be used to base your sources on the newly created branch. From that point on, all commit changes made within these working sources will be automatically added to a branch revision, thereby not disturbing main-line development in any way. For example, if you had to create a patch to the 1.2 version of the product, even though the 2.0 version is already under development, you might do:

     $ cvs rtag -b -r FCS1_2 FCS1_2_Patch product_module
     $ cvs checkout -r FCS1_2_Patch product_module
     $ cd product_module
     [[ hack away ]]
     $ cvs commit
     

This works automatically since the -r option is sticky.

Creating the branch after editing

Say you have been working on some extremely experimental software, based on whatever revision you happened to checkout last week. If others in your group would like to work on this software with you, but without disturbing main-line development, you could commit your change to a new branch. Others can then checkout your experimental stuff and utilize the full benefit of CVSNT conflict resolution. The scenario might look like:

     [[ hacked sources are present ]]
     $ cvs tag -b EXPR1
     $ cvs update -r EXPR1
     $ cvs commit
     

The update command will make the -r EXPR1 option sticky on all files. Note that your changes to the files will never be removed by the update command. The commit will automatically commit to the correct branch, because the -r is sticky. You could also do like this:

     [[ hacked sources are present ]]
     $ cvs tag -b EXPR1
     $ cvs commit -r EXPR1
     

but then, only those files that were changed by you will have the -r EXPR1 sticky flag. If you hack away, and commit without specifying the -r EXPR1 flag, some files may accidentally end up on the main trunk.

To work with you on the experimental change, others would simply do

     $ cvs checkout -r EXPR1 whatever_module
     


Node:diff, Next:, Previous:commit, Up:CVS commands

diff--Show differences between revisions

The diff command is used to compare different revisions of files. The default action is to compare your working files with the revisions they were based on, and report any differences that are found.

If any file names are given, only those files are compared. If any directories are given, all files under them will be compared.

The exit status for diff is different than for other CVSNT commands; for details Exit status.


Node:diff options, Next:, Previous:diff, Up:diff

diff options

These standard options are supported by diff (see Common options, for a complete description of them):

-D date
Use the most recent revision no later than date. See -r for how this affects the comparison.
-k kflag
Process keywords according to kflag. See Keyword substitution.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory.
-R
Examine directories recursively. This option is on by default.
-r tag
Compare with revision tag. Zero, one or two -r options can be present. With no -r option, the working file will be compared with the revision it was based on. With one -r, that revision will be compared to your current working file. With two -r options those two revisions will be compared (and your working file will not affect the outcome in any way).

One or both -r options can be replaced by a -D date option, described above.

The following options specify the format of the output. They have the same meaning as in GNU diff.

     -0 -1 -2 -3 -4 -5 -6 -7 -8 -9
     --binary
     --brief
     --changed-group-format=arg
     -c
       -C nlines
       --context[=lines]
     -e --ed
     -t --expand-tabs
     -f --forward-ed
     --horizon-lines=arg
     --ifdef=arg
     -w --ignore-all-space
     -B --ignore-blank-lines
     -i --ignore-case
     -I regexp
        --ignore-matching-lines=regexp
     -h
     -b --ignore-space-change
     -T --initial-tab
     -L label
       --label=label
     --left-column
     -d --minimal
     -N --new-file
     --new-line-format=arg
     --old-line-format=arg
     --paginate
     -n --rcs
     -s --report-identical-files
     -p
     --show-c-function
     -y --side-by-side
     -F regexp
     --show-function-line=regexp
     -H --speed-large-files
     --suppress-common-lines
     -a --text
     --unchanged-group-format=arg
     -u
       -U nlines
       --unified[=lines]
     -V arg
     -W columns
       --width=columns
     


Node:diff examples, Previous:diff options, Up:diff

diff examples

The following line produces a Unidiff (-u flag) between revision 1.14 and 1.19 of backend.c. Due to the -kk flag no keywords are substituted, so differences that only depend on keyword substitution are ignored.

     $ cvs diff -kk -u -r 1.14 -r 1.19 backend.c
     

Suppose the experimental branch EXPR1 was based on a set of files tagged RELEASE_1_0. To see what has happened on that branch, the following can be used:

     $ cvs diff -r RELEASE_1_0 -r EXPR1
     

A command like this can be used to produce a context diff between two releases:

     $ cvs diff -c -r RELEASE_1_0 -r RELEASE_1_1 > diffs
     

If you are maintaining ChangeLogs, a command like the following just before you commit your changes may help you write the ChangeLog entry. All local modifications that have not yet been committed will be printed.

     $ cvs diff -u | less
     


Node:adduser, Next:, Previous:diff, Up:CVS commands

Add a user to the repository

If invoked by the administrator, it adds a user.

This only works with remote pserver repositories.


Node:passwd, Next:, Previous:adduser, Up:CVS commands

Modify a user's password or create a user

If invoked without a username, this will prompt the user for a new password and change the password to the new one specified by the user.

If invoked by the administrator with a username, it allows another user's password to be modified.

This only works with remote pserver repositories.


Node:deluser, Next:, Previous:passwd, Up:CVS commands

Delete a user

Allows the administrator to delete users from the repository.

This only works with remote pserver repositories.


Node:chacl, Next:, Previous:deluser, Up:CVS commands

Set a user's permissions for a directory

Allows the owner of a directory to allow or disallow access to a repository directory to other users of the repository.

The perm field can only contain three characters: c, r, and w. These character mean:

     c - create - create and delete files and directories
     r - read   - retrieve file and look at information
     w - write  - modify files and change information
     


Node:chown, Next:, Previous:chacl, Up:CVS commands

Change a directory's owner

Allows the owner of a directory to assign a new owner to directories.


Node:lsacl, Next:, Previous:chown, Up:CVS commands

Show a directory's permissions

Lists the owner and other users that have permissions in the directory.


Node:export, Next:, Previous:lsacl, Up:CVS commands

export--Export sources from CVS, similar to checkout

This command is a variant of checkout; use it when you want a copy of the source for module without the CVSNT administrative directories. For example, you might use export to prepare source for shipment off-site. This command requires that you specify a date or tag (with -D or -r), so that you can count on reproducing the source you ship to others (and thus it always prunes empty directories).

One often would like to use -kv with cvs export. This causes any keywords to be expanded such that an import done at some other site will not lose the keyword revision information. But be aware that doesn't handle an export containing binary files correctly. Also be aware that after having used -kv, one can no longer use the ident command (which is part of the RCS suite--see ident(1)) which looks for keyword strings. If you want to be able to use ident you must not use -kv.


Node:export options, Previous:export, Up:export

export options

These standard options are supported by export (see Common options, for a complete description of them):

-D date
Use the most recent revision no later than date.
-f
If no matching revision is found, retrieve the most recent revision (instead of ignoring the file).
-l
Local; run only in current working directory.
-n
Do not run any checkout program.
-R
Export directories recursively. This is on by default.
-r tag
Use revision tag.

In addition, these options (that are common to checkout and export) are also supported:

-d dir
Create a directory called dir for the working files, instead of using the module name. See checkout options, for complete details on how CVSNT handles this flag.
-k subst
Set keyword expansion mode (see Substitution modes).
-N
Only useful together with -d dir. See checkout options, for complete details on how CVSNT handles this flag.


Node:history, Next:, Previous:export, Up:CVS commands

history--Show status of files and users

CVSNT can keep a history file that tracks each use of the checkout, commit, rtag, update, and release commands. You can use history to display this information in various formats.

Logging must be enabled by creating the file $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/history.

Warning: history uses -f, -l, -n, and -p in ways that conflict with the normal use inside CVSNT (see Common options).


Node:history options, Previous:history, Up:history

history options

Several options (shown above as -report) control what kind of report is generated:

-c
Report on each time commit was used (i.e., each time the repository was modified).
-e
Everything (all record types). Equivalent to specifying -x with all record types. Of course, -e will also include record types which are added in a future version of CVSNT; if you are writing a script which can only handle certain record types, you'll want to specify -x.
-m module
Report on a particular module. (You can meaningfully use -m more than once on the command line.)
-o
Report on checked-out modules. This is the default report type.
-T
Report on all tags.
-x type
Extract a particular set of record types type from the CVSNT history. The types are indicated by single letters, which you may specify in combination.

Certain commands have a single record type:

F
release
O
checkout
E
export
T
rtag

One of four record types may result from an update:

C
A merge was necessary but collisions were detected (requiring manual merging).
G
A merge was necessary and it succeeded.
U
A working file was copied from the repository.
W
The working copy of a file was deleted during update (because it was gone from the repository).

One of three record types results from commit:

A
A file was added for the first time.
M
A file was modified.
R
A file was removed.

The options shown as -flags constrain or expand the report without requiring option arguments:

-a
Show data for all users (the default is to show data only for the user executing history).
-l
Show last modification only.
-w
Show only the records for modifications done from the same working directory where history is executing.

The options shown as -options args constrain the report based on an argument:

-b str
Show data back to a record containing the string str in either the module name, the file name, or the repository path.
-D date
Show data since date. This is slightly different from the normal use of -D date, which selects the newest revision older than date.
-f file
Show data for a particular file (you can specify several -f options on the same command line). This is equivalent to specifying the file on the command line.
-n module
Show data for a particular module (you can specify several -n options on the same command line).
-p repository
Show data for a particular source repository (you can specify several -p options on the same command line).
-r rev
Show records referring to revisions since the revision or tag named rev appears in individual RCS files. Each RCS file is searched for the revision or tag.
-t tag
Show records since tag tag was last added to the history file. This differs from the -r flag above in that it reads only the history file, not the RCS files, and is much faster.
-u name
Show records for user name.
-z timezone
Show times in the selected records using the specified time zone instead of UTC.


Node:import, Next:, Previous:history, Up:CVS commands

import--Import sources into CVS, using vendor branches

Use import to incorporate an entire source distribution from an outside source (e.g., a source vendor) into your source repository directory. You can use this command both for initial creation of a repository, and for wholesale updates to the module from the outside source. See Tracking sources, for a discussion on this subject.

The repository argument gives a directory name (or a path to a directory) under the CVSNT root directory for repositories; if the directory did not exist, import creates it.

When you use import for updates to source that has been modified in your source repository (since a prior import), it will notify you of any files that conflict in the two branches of development; use checkout -j to reconcile the differences, as import instructs you to do.

If CVSNT decides a file should be ignored (see cvsignore), it does not import it and prints I followed by the filename (see import output, for a complete description of the output).

If the file $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/cvswrappers exists, any file whose names match the specifications in that file will be treated as packages and the appropriate filtering will be performed on the file/directory before being imported. See Wrappers.

The outside source is saved in a first-level branch, by default 1.1.1. Updates are leaves of this branch; for example, files from the first imported collection of source will be revision 1.1.1.1, then files from the first imported update will be revision 1.1.1.2, and so on.

At least three arguments are required. repository is needed to identify the collection of source. vendortag is a tag for the entire branch (e.g., for 1.1.1). You must also specify at least one releasetag to identify the files at the leaves created each time you execute import.

Note that import does not change the directory in which you invoke it. In particular, it does not set up that directory as a CVSNT working directory; if you want to work with the sources import them first and then check them out into a different directory (see Getting the source).


Node:import options, Next:, Previous:import, Up:import

import options

This standard option is supported by import (see Common options, for a complete description):

-m message
Use message as log information, instead of invoking an editor.

There are the following additional special options.

-b branch
See Multiple vendor branches.
-k subst
Indicate the keyword expansion mode desired. This setting will apply to all files created during the import, but not to any files that previously existed in the repository. See Substitution modes, for a list of valid -k settings.
-I name
Specify file names that should be ignored during import. You can use this option repeatedly. To avoid ignoring any files at all (even those ignored by default), specify `-I !'.

name can be a file name pattern of the same type that you can specify in the .cvsignore file. See cvsignore.

-W spec
Specify file names that should be filtered during import. You can use this option repeatedly.

spec can be a file name pattern of the same type that you can specify in the .cvswrappers file. See Wrappers.


Node:import output, Next:, Previous:import options, Up:import

import output

import keeps you informed of its progress by printing a line for each file, preceded by one character indicating the status of the file:

U file
The file already exists in the repository and has not been locally modified; a new revision has been created (if necessary).
N file
The file is a new file which has been added to the repository.
C file
The file already exists in the repository but has been locally modified; you will have to merge the changes.
I file
The file is being ignored (see cvsignore).
L file
The file is a symbolic link; cvs import ignores symbolic links. People periodically suggest that this behavior should be changed, but if there is a consensus on what it should be changed to, it doesn't seem to be apparent. (Various options in the modules file can be used to recreate symbolic links on checkout, update, etc.; see modules.)


Node:import examples, Previous:import output, Up:import

import examples

See Tracking sources, and From files.


Node:log, Next:, Previous:import, Up:CVS commands

log--Print out log information for files

Display log information for files. log used to call the RCS utility rlog. Although this is no longer true in the current sources, this history determines the format of the output and the options, which are not quite in the style of the other CVSNT commands.

The output includes the location of the RCS file, the head revision (the latest revision on the trunk), all symbolic names (tags) and some other things. For each revision, the revision number, the author, the number of lines added/deleted and the log message are printed. All times are displayed in Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). (Other parts of CVSNT print times in the local timezone).

Warning: log uses -R in a way that conflicts with the normal use inside CVSNT (see Common options).


Node:log options, Next:, Previous:log, Up:log

log options

By default, log prints all information that is available. All other options restrict the output.

-b
Print information about the revisions on the default branch, normally the highest branch on the trunk.
-d dates
Print information about revisions with a checkin date/time in the range given by the semicolon-separated list of dates. The date formats accepted are those accepted by the -D option to many other CVSNT commands (see Common options). Dates can be combined into ranges as follows:
d1<d2
d2>d1
Select the revisions that were deposited between d1 and d2.
<d
d>
Select all revisions dated d or earlier.
d<
>d
Select all revisions dated d or later.
d
Select the single, latest revision dated d or earlier.

The > or < characters may be followed by = to indicate an inclusive range rather than an exclusive one.

Note that the separator is a semicolon (;).

-h
Print only the name of the RCS file, name of the file in the working directory, head, default branch, access list, locks, symbolic names, and suffix.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. (Default is to run recursively).
-N
Do not print the list of tags for this file. This option can be very useful when your site uses a lot of tags, so rather than "more"'ing over 3 pages of tag information, the log information is presented without tags at all.
-R
Print only the name of the RCS file.
-rrevisions
Print information about revisions given in the comma-separated list revisions of revisions and ranges. The following table explains the available range formats:
rev1:rev2
Revisions rev1 to rev2 (which must be on the same branch).
rev1::rev2
Revisions between, but not including, rev1 and rev2.
:rev
Revisions from the beginning of the branch up to and including rev.
::rev
Revisions from the beginning of the branch up to, but not including, rev.
rev:
Revisions starting with rev to the end of the branch containing rev.
rev:
Revisions starting just after rev to the end of the branch containing rev.
branch
An argument that is a branch means all revisions on that branch.
branch1:branch2
branch1::branch2
A range of branches means all revisions on the branches in that range.
branch.
The latest revision in branch.

A bare -r with no revisions means the latest revision on the default branch, normally the trunk. There can be no space between the -r option and its argument.

-s states
Print information about revisions whose state attributes match one of the states given in the comma-separated list states.
-t
Print the same as -h, plus the descriptive text.
-wlogins
Print information about revisions checked in by users with login names appearing in the comma-separated list logins. If logins is omitted, the user's login is assumed. There can be no space between the -w option and its argument.

log prints the intersection of the revisions selected with the options -d, -s, and -w, intersected with the union of the revisions selected by -b and -r.


Node:log examples, Previous:log options, Up:log

log examples

Contributed examples are gratefully accepted.


Node:rdiff, Next:, Previous:log, Up:CVS commands

rdiff--'patch' format diffs between releases

Builds a Larry Wall format patch(1) file between two releases, that can be fed directly into the patch program to bring an old release up-to-date with the new release. (This is one of the few CVSNT commands that operates directly from the repository, and doesn't require a prior checkout.) The diff output is sent to the standard output device.

You can specify (using the standard -r and -D options) any combination of one or two revisions or dates. If only one revision or date is specified, the patch file reflects differences between that revision or date and the current head revisions in the RCS file.

Note that if the software release affected is contained in more than one directory, then it may be necessary to specify the -p option to the patch command when patching the old sources, so that patch is able to find the files that are located in other directories.


Node:rdiff options, Next:, Previous:rdiff, Up:rdiff

rdiff options

These standard options are supported by rdiff (see Common options, for a complete description of them):

-D date
Use the most recent revision no later than date.
-f
If no matching revision is found, retrieve the most recent revision (instead of ignoring the file).
-l
Local; don't descend subdirectories.
-R
Examine directories recursively. This option is on by default.
-r tag
Use revision tag.

In addition to the above, these options are available:

-c
Use the context diff format. This is the default format.
-s
Create a summary change report instead of a patch. The summary includes information about files that were changed or added between the releases. It is sent to the standard output device. This is useful for finding out, for example, which files have changed between two dates or revisions.
-t
A diff of the top two revisions is sent to the standard output device. This is most useful for seeing what the last change to a file was.
-u
Use the unidiff format for the context diffs. Remember that old versions of the patch program can't handle the unidiff format, so if you plan to post this patch to the net you should probably not use -u.
-V vn
Expand keywords according to the rules current in RCS version vn (the expansion format changed with RCS version 5). Note that this option is no longer accepted. CVSNT will always expand keywords the way that RCS version 5 does.


Node:rdiff examples, Previous:rdiff options, Up:rdiff

rdiff examples

Suppose you receive mail from foo@example.net asking for an update from release 1.2 to 1.4 of the tc compiler. You have no such patches on hand, but with CVSNT that can easily be fixed with a command such as this:

     $ cvs rdiff -c -r FOO1_2 -r FOO1_4 tc | \
     $$ Mail -s 'The patches you asked for' foo@example.net
     

Suppose you have made release 1.3, and forked a branch called R_1_3fix for bugfixes. R_1_3_1 corresponds to release 1.3.1, which was made some time ago. Now, you want to see how much development has been done on the branch. This command can be used:

     $ cvs patch -s -r R_1_3_1 -r R_1_3fix module-name
     cvs rdiff: Diffing module-name
     File ChangeLog,v changed from revision 1.52.2.5 to 1.52.2.6
     File foo.c,v changed from revision 1.52.2.3 to 1.52.2.4
     File bar.h,v changed from revision 1.29.2.1 to 1.2
     


Node:release, Next:, Previous:rdiff, Up:CVS commands

release--Indicate that a Module is no longer in use

This command is meant to safely cancel the effect of cvs checkout. Since CVSNT doesn't lock files, it isn't strictly necessary to use this command. You can always simply delete your working directory, if you like; but you risk losing changes you may have forgotten, and you leave no trace in the CVSNT history file (see history file) that you've abandoned your checkout.

Use cvs release to avoid these problems. This command checks that no uncommitted changes are present; that you are executing it from immediately above a CVSNT working directory; and that the repository recorded for your files is the same as the repository defined in the module database.

If all these conditions are true, cvs release leaves a record of its execution (attesting to your intentionally abandoning your checkout) in the CVSNT history log.


Node:release options, Next:, Previous:release, Up:release

release options

The release command supports the following command options:

-d
Delete your working copy of the file if the release succeeds. If this flag is not given your files will remain in your working directory.
-f
Must be specified with -f, above. Force the the deletion of the directory even if non-cvs files are present.
-e
Don't delete any files, just delete the CVSNT administrative directories. The directory is then left in a state as if it had just been exported.


Node:release output, Next:, Previous:release options, Up:release

release output

Before release releases your sources it will print a one-line message if any file that is not up-to-date.


Node:release examples, Previous:release output, Up:release

release examples

Release the tc directory, and delete your local working copy of the files.

     $ cd ..         # You must stand immediately above the
                     # sources when you issue cvs release.
     $ cvs release -d tc
     You have [5] altered files in this repository.
     Are you sure you want to release (and delete) directory `tc': y
     $
     


Node:update, Previous:release, Up:CVS commands

update--Bring work tree in sync with repository

After you've run checkout to create your private copy of source from the common repository, other developers will continue changing the central source. From time to time, when it is convenient in your development process, you can use the update command from within your working directory to reconcile your work with any revisions applied to the source repository since your last checkout or update.


Node:update options, Next:, Previous:update, Up:update

update options

These standard options are available with update (see Common options, for a complete description of them):

-D date
Use the most recent revision no later than date. This option is sticky, and implies -P. See Sticky tags, for more information on sticky tags/dates.
-f
Only useful with the -D date or -r tag flags. If no matching revision is found, retrieve the most recent revision (instead of ignoring the file).
-k kflag
Process keywords according to kflag. See Keyword substitution. This option is sticky; future updates of this file in this working directory will use the same kflag. The status command can be viewed to see the sticky options. See Invoking CVS, for more information on the status command.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-P
Prune empty directories. See Moving directories.
-p
Pipe files to the standard output.
-R
Update directories recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r rev
Retrieve revision/tag rev. This option is sticky, and implies -P. See Sticky tags, for more information on sticky tags/dates.

These special options are also available with update.

-A
Reset any sticky tags, dates, or -k options. See Sticky tags, for more information on sticky tags/dates.
-C
Overwrite locally modified files with clean copies from the repository (the modified file is saved in .#file.revision, however).
-d
Create any directories that exist in the repository if they're missing from the working directory. Normally, update acts only on directories and files that were already enrolled in your working directory.

This is useful for updating directories that were created in the repository since the initial checkout; but it has an unfortunate side effect. If you deliberately avoided certain directories in the repository when you created your working directory (either through use of a module name or by listing explicitly the files and directories you wanted on the command line), then updating with -d will create those directories, which may not be what you want.

-I name
Ignore files whose names match name (in your working directory) during the update. You can specify -I more than once on the command line to specify several files to ignore. Use -I ! to avoid ignoring any files at all. See cvsignore, for other ways to make CVSNT ignore some files.
-Wspec
Specify file names that should be filtered during update. You can use this option repeatedly.

spec can be a file name pattern of the same type that you can specify in the .cvswrappers file. See Wrappers.

-jrevision
With two -j options, merge changes from the revision specified with the first -j option to the revision specified with the second j option, into the working directory.

With one -j option, merge changes from the ancestor revision to the revision specified with the -j option, into the working directory. The ancestor revision is the common ancestor of the revision which the working directory is based on, and the revision specified in the -j option.

Note that using a single -j tagname option rather than -j branchname to merge changes from a branch will often not remove files which were removed on the branch. See Merging adds and removals, for more.

In addition, each -j option can contain an optional date specification which, when used with branches, can limit the chosen revision to one within a specific date. An optional date is specified by adding a colon (:) to the tag: -jSymbolic_Tag:Date_Specifier.

See Branching and merging.


Node:update output, Previous:update options, Up:update

update output

update and checkout keep you informed of their progress by printing a line for each file, preceded by one character indicating the status of the file:

U file
The file was brought up to date with respect to the repository. This is done for any file that exists in the repository but not in your source, and for files that you haven't changed but are not the most recent versions available in the repository.
P file
Like U, but the CVSNT server sends a patch instead of an entire file. These two things accomplish the same thing.
A file
The file has been added to your private copy of the sources, and will be added to the source repository when you run commit on the file. This is a reminder to you that the file needs to be committed.
R file
The file has been removed from your private copy of the sources, and will be removed from the source repository when you run commit on the file. This is a reminder to you that the file needs to be committed.
M file
The file is modified in your working directory.

M can indicate one of two states for a file you're working on: either there were no modifications to the same file in the repository, so that your file remains as you last saw it; or there were modifications in the repository as well as in your copy, but they were merged successfully, without conflict, in your working directory.

CVSNT will print some messages if it merges your work, and a backup copy of your working file (as it looked before you ran update) will be made. The exact name of that file is printed while update runs.

C file
A conflict was detected while trying to merge your changes to file with changes from the source repository. file (the copy in your working directory) is now the result of attempting to merge the two revisions; an unmodified copy of your file is also in your working directory, with the name .#file.revision where revision is the revision that your modified file started from. Resolve the conflict as described in Conflicts example. (Note that some systems automatically purge files that begin with .# if they have not been accessed for a few days. If you intend to keep a copy of your original file, it is a very good idea to rename it.) Under VMS, the file name starts with __ rather than .#.
? file
file is in your working directory, but does not correspond to anything in the source repository, and is not in the list of files for CVSNT to ignore (see the description of the -I option, and see cvsignore).


Node:Invoking CVS, Next:, Previous:CVS commands, Up:Top

Quick reference to CVS commands

This appendix describes how to invoke CVSNT, with references to where each command or feature is described in detail. For other references run the cvs --help command, or see Index.

A CVSNT command looks like:

     cvs [ global_options ] command [ command_options ] [ command_args ]
     

Global options:

--allow-root=rootdir
Specify legal CVSROOT directory (server only) (not in CVSNT 1.9 and older). See Authentication server.
-a
Authenticate all communication (client only) (not in CVSNT 1.9 and older). See Global options.
-b
Specify RCS location (CVSNT 1.9 and older). See Global options.
-d root
Specify the CVSROOT. See Repository.
-D prefix
Specifiy the repository Prefix. See Repository Prefix
-e editor
Edit messages with editor. See Committing your changes.
-f
Do not read the ~/.cvsrc file. See Global options.
-H
--help
Print a help message. See Global options.
-l
Do not log in $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/history file. See Global options.
-n
Do not change any files. See Global options.
-Q
Be really quiet. See Global options.
-q
Be somewhat quiet. See Global options.
-r
Make new working files read-only. See Global options.
-s variable=value
Set a user variable. See Variables.
-T tempdir
Put temporary files in tempdir. See Global options.
-t
Trace CVSNT execution. See Global options.
-v

--version
Display version and copyright information for CVSNT.
-w
Make new working files read-write. See Global options.
-x
Encrypt all communication (client only). See Global options.
-z gzip-level
Set the compression level (client only). See Global options.

Keyword expansion modes (see Substitution modes):

     -kkv  $Id: file1,v 1.1 1993/12/09 03:21:13 joe Exp $
     -kkvl $Id: file1,v 1.1 1993/12/09 03:21:13 joe Exp harry $
     -kk   $Id$
     -kv   file1,v 1.1 1993/12/09 03:21:13 joe Exp
     -ko   no expansion
     -kb   no expansion, file is binary
     

Keywords (see Keyword list):

     $Author: joe $
     $Date: 1993/12/09 03:21:13 $
     $Header: /home/files/file1,v 1.1 1993/12/09 03:21:13 joe Exp harry $
     $Id: file1,v 1.1 1993/12/09 03:21:13 joe Exp harry $
     $Locker: harry $
     $Name: snapshot_1_14 $
     $RCSfile: file1,v $
     $Revision: 1.1 $
     $Source: /home/files/file1,v $
     $State: Exp $
     $Log: file1,v $
     Revision 1.1  1993/12/09 03:30:17  joe
     Initial revision
     
     

Commands, command options, and command arguments:

add [options] [files...]
Add a new file/directory. See Adding files.
-k kflag
Set keyword expansion.
-m msg
Set file description.

admin [options] [files...]
Administration of history files in the repository. See admin.
-b[rev]
Set default branch. See Reverting local changes.
-cstring
Set comment leader.
-ksubst
Set keyword substitution. See Keyword substitution.
-l[rev]
Lock revision rev, or latest revision.
-mrev:msg
Replace the log message of revision rev with msg.
-orange
Delete revisions from the repository. See admin options.
-q
Run quietly; do not print diagnostics.
-sstate[:rev]
Set the state.
-t
Set file description from standard input.
-tfile
Set file description from file.
-t-string
Set file description to string.
-u[rev]
Unlock revision rev, or latest revision.

annotate [options] [files...]
Show last revision where each line was modified. See annotate.
-D date
Annotate the most recent revision no later than date. See Common options.
-f
Use head revision if tag/date not found. See Common options.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r tag
Annotate revision tag. See Common options.

checkout [options] modules...
Get a copy of the sources. See checkout.
-A
Reset any sticky tags/date/options. See Sticky tags and Keyword substitution.
-c
Output the module database. See checkout options.
-D date
Check out revisions as of date (is sticky). See Common options.
-d dir
Check out into dir. See checkout options.
-f
Use head revision if tag/date not found. See Common options.
-j rev
Merge in changes. See checkout options.
-k kflag
Use kflag keyword expansion. See Substitution modes.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-N
Don't "shorten" module paths if -d specified. See checkout options.
-n
Do not run module program (if any). See checkout options.
-P
Prune empty directories. See Moving directories.
-p
Check out files to standard output (avoids stickiness). See checkout options.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r tag
Checkout revision tag (is sticky). See Common options.
-s
Like -c, but include module status. See checkout options.

commit [options] [files...]
Check changes into the repository. See commit.
-F file
Read log message from file. See commit options.
-f
Force the file to be committed; disables recursion. See commit options.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-m msg
Use msg as log message. See commit options.
-n
Do not run module program (if any). See commit options.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r rev
Commit to rev. See commit options.

diff [options] [files...]
Show differences between revisions. See diff. In addition to the options shown below, accepts a wide variety of options to control output style, for example -c for context diffs.
-D date1
Diff revision for date against working file. See diff options.
-D date2
Diff rev1/date1 against date2. See diff options.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-N
Include diffs for added and removed files. See diff options.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r rev1
Diff revision for rev1 against working file. See diff options.
-r rev2
Diff rev1/date1 against rev2. See diff options.

edit [options] [files...]
Get ready to edit a watched file. See Editing files.
-a actions
Specify actions for temporary watch, where actions is edit, unedit, commit, all, or none. See Editing files.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.

editors [options] [files...]
See who is editing a watched file. See Watch information.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.

export [options] modules...
Export files from CVSNT. See export.
-D date
Check out revisions as of date. See Common options.
-d dir
Check out into dir. See export options.
-f
Use head revision if tag/date not found. See Common options.
-k kflag
Use kflag keyword expansion. See Substitution modes.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-N
Don't "shorten" module paths if -d specified. See export options.
-n
Do not run module program (if any). See export options.
-P
Prune empty directories. See Moving directories.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r tag
Checkout revision tag. See Common options.

history [options] [files...]
Show repository access history. See history.
-a
All users (default is self). See history options.
-b str
Back to record with str in module/file/repos field. See history options.
-c
Report on committed (modified) files. See history options.
-D date
Since date. See history options.
-e
Report on all record types. See history options.
-l
Last modified (committed or modified report). See history options.
-m module
Report on module (repeatable). See history options.
-n module
In module. See history options.
-o
Report on checked out modules. See history options.
-r rev
Since revision rev. See history options.
-T
Produce report on all TAGs. See history options.
-t tag
Since tag record placed in history file (by anyone). See history options.
-u user
For user user (repeatable). See history options.
-w
Working directory must match. See history options.
-x types
Report on types, one or more of TOEFWUCGMAR. See history options.
-z zone
Output for time zone zone. See history options.

import [options] repository vendor-tag release-tags...
Import files into CVSNT, using vendor branches. See import.
-b bra
Import to vendor branch bra. See Multiple vendor branches.
-d
Use the file's modification time as the time of import. See import options.
-k kflag
Set default keyword substitution mode. See import options.
-m msg
Use msg for log message. See import options.
-I ign
More files to ignore (! to reset). See import options.
-W spec
More wrappers. See import options.

init
Create a CVSNT repository if it doesn't exist. See Creating a repository.
log [options] [files...]
Print out history information for files. See log.
-b
Only list revisions on the default branch. See log options.
-d dates
Specify dates (d1<d2 for range, d for latest before). See log options.
-h
Only print header. See log options.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-N
Do not list tags. See log options.
-R
Only print name of RCS file. See log options.
-rrevs
Only list revisions revs. See log options.
-s states
Only list revisions with specified states. See log options.
-t
Only print header and descriptive text. See log options.
-wlogins
Only list revisions checked in by specified logins. See log options.

login
Prompt for password for authenticating server. See Authentication client.
logout
Remove stored password for authenticating server. See Authentication client.
rdiff [options] modules...
Show differences between releases. See rdiff.
-c
Context diff output format (default). See rdiff options.
-D date
Select revisions based on date. See Common options.
-f
Use head revision if tag/date not found. See Common options.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r rev
Select revisions based on rev. See Common options.
-s
Short patch - one liner per file. See rdiff options.
-t
Top two diffs - last change made to the file. See diff options.
-u
Unidiff output format. See rdiff options.
-V vers
Use RCS Version vers for keyword expansion (obsolete). See rdiff options.

release [options] directory
Indicate that a directory is no longer in use. See release.
-d
Delete the given directory. See release options.

remove [options] [files...]
Remove an entry from the repository. See Removing files.
-f
Delete the file before removing it. See Removing files.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.

rtag [options] tag modules...
Add a symbolic tag to a module. See Revisions and Branching and merging.
-a
Clear tag from removed files that would not otherwise be tagged. See Tagging add/remove.
-b
Create a branch named tag. See Branching and merging.
-D date
Tag revisions as of date. See Tagging by date/tag.
-d
Delete tag. See Modifying tags.
-F
Move tag if it already exists. See Modifying tags.
-f
Force a head revision match if tag/date not found. See Tagging by date/tag.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-n
No execution of tag program. See Common options.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r rev
Tag existing tag rev. See Tagging by date/tag.

status [options] files...
Display status information in a working directory. See File status.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-v
Include tag information for file. See Tags.

tag [options] tag [files...]
Add a symbolic tag to checked out version of files. See Revisions and Branching and merging.
-b
Create a branch named tag. See Branching and merging.
-c
Check that working files are unmodified. See Tagging the working directory.
-D date
Tag revisions as of date. See Tagging by date/tag.
-d
Delete tag. See Modifying tags.
-F
Move tag if it already exists. See Modifying tags.
-f
Force a head revision match if tag/date not found. See Tagging by date/tag.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r rev
Tag existing tag rev. See Tagging by date/tag.

unedit [options] [files...]
Undo an edit command. See Editing files.
-a actions
Specify actions for temporary watch, where actions is edit, unedit, commit, all, or none. See Editing files.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.

update [options] [files...]
Bring work tree in sync with repository. See update.
-A
Reset any sticky tags/date/options. See Sticky tags and Keyword substitution.
-C
Overwrite locally modified files with clean copies from the repository (the modified file is saved in .#file.revision, however).
-D date
Check out revisions as of date (is sticky). See Common options.
-d
Create directories. See update options.
-f
Use head revision if tag/date not found. See Common options.
-I ign
More files to ignore (! to reset). See import options.
-j rev
Merge in changes. See update options.
-k kflag
Use kflag keyword expansion. See Substitution modes.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-P
Prune empty directories. See Moving directories.
-p
Check out files to standard output (avoids stickiness). See update options.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.
-r tag
Checkout revision tag (is sticky). See Common options.
-W spec
More wrappers. See import options.

version

Display the version of CVSNT being used. If the repository is remote, display both the client and server versions.

watch [on|off|add|remove] [options] [files...]
on/off: turn on/off read-only checkouts of files. See Setting a watch.

add/remove: add or remove notification on actions. See Getting Notified.

-a actions
Specify actions for temporary watch, where actions is edit, unedit, commit, all, or none. See Editing files.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.

watchers [options] [files...]
See who is watching a file. See Watch information.
-l
Local; run only in current working directory. See Recursive behavior.
-R
Operate recursively (default). See Recursive behavior.


Node:Administrative files, Next:, Previous:Invoking CVS, Up:Top

Reference manual for Administrative files

Inside the repository, in the directory $CVSROOT/CVSROOT, there are a number of supportive files for CVSNT. You can use CVSNT in a limited fashion without any of them, but if they are set up properly they can help make life easier. For a discussion of how to edit them, see Intro administrative files.

The most important of these files is the modules file, which defines the modules inside the repository.


Node:modules, Next:, Previous:Administrative files, Up:Administrative files

The modules file

The modules file records your definitions of names for collections of source code. CVSNT will use these definitions if you use CVSNT to update the modules file (use normal commands like add, commit, etc).

The modules file may contain blank lines and comments (lines beginning with #) as well as module definitions. Long lines can be continued on the next line by specifying a backslash (\) as the last character on the line.

There are three basic types of modules: alias modules, regular modules, and ampersand modules. The difference between them is the way that they map files in the repository to files in the working directory. In all of the following examples, the top-level repository contains a directory called first-dir, which contains two files, file1 and file2, and a directory sdir. first-dir/sdir contains a file sfile.


Node:Alias modules, Next:, Previous:modules, Up:modules

Alias modules

Alias modules are the simplest kind of module:

mname -a aliases...
This represents the simplest way of defining a module mname. The -a flags the definition as a simple alias: CVSNT will treat any use of mname (as a command argument) as if the list of names aliases had been specified instead. aliases may contain either other module names or paths. When you use paths in aliases, checkout creates all intermediate directories in the working directory, just as if the path had been specified explicitly in the CVSNT arguments.

For example, if the modules file contains:

     amodule -a first-dir
     

then the following two commands are equivalent:

     $ cvs co amodule
     $ cvs co first-dir
     

and they each would provide output such as:

     cvs checkout: Updating first-dir
     U first-dir/file1
     U first-dir/file2
     cvs checkout: Updating first-dir/sdir
     U first-dir/sdir/sfile
     


Node:Regular modules, Next:, Previous:Alias modules, Up:modules

Regular modules

mname [ options ] dir [ files... ]
In the simplest case, this form of module definition reduces to mname dir. This defines all the files in directory dir as module mname. dir is a relative path (from $CVSROOT) to a directory of source in the source repository. In this case, on checkout, a single directory called mname is created as a working directory; no intermediate directory levels are used by default, even if dir was a path involving several directory levels.

For example, if a module is defined by:

     regmodule first-dir
     

then regmodule will contain the files from first-dir:

     $ cvs co regmodule
     cvs checkout: Updating regmodule
     U regmodule/file1
     U regmodule/file2
     cvs checkout: Updating regmodule/sdir
     U regmodule/sdir/sfile
     $
     

By explicitly specifying files in the module definition after dir, you can select particular files from directory dir. Here is an example:

     regfiles first-dir/sdir sfile
     

With this definition, getting the regfiles module will create a single working directory regfiles containing the file listed, which comes from a directory deeper in the CVSNT source repository:

     $ cvs co regfiles
     U regfiles/sfile
     $
     


Node:Ampersand modules, Next:, Previous:Regular modules, Up:modules

Ampersand modules

A module definition can refer to other modules by including &module in its definition.

     mname [ options ] &module...
     

Then getting the module creates a subdirectory for each such module, in the directory containing the module. For example, if modules contains

     ampermod &first-dir
     

then a checkout will create an ampermod directory which contains a directory called first-dir, which in turns contains all the directories and files which live there. For example, the command

     $ cvs co ampermod
     

will create the following files:

     ampermod/first-dir/file1
     ampermod/first-dir/file2
     ampermod/first-dir/sdir/sfile
     

There is one quirk/bug: the messages that CVSNT prints omit the ampermod, and thus do not correctly display the location to which it is checking out the files:

     $ cvs co ampermod
     cvs checkout: Updating first-dir
     U first-dir/file1
     U first-dir/file2
     cvs checkout: Updating first-dir/sdir
     U first-dir/sdir/sfile
     $
     

Do not rely on this buggy behavior; it may get fixed in a future release of CVSNT.


Node:Excluding directories, Next:, Previous:Ampersand modules, Up:modules

Excluding directories

An alias module may exclude particular directories from other modules by using an exclamation mark (!) before the name of each directory to be excluded.

For example, if the modules file contains:

     exmodule -a !first-dir/sdir first-dir
     

then checking out the module exmodule will check out everything in first-dir except any files in the subdirectory first-dir/sdir.


Node:Module options, Next:, Previous:Excluding directories, Up:modules

Module options

Either regular modules or ampersand modules can contain options, which supply additional information concerning the module.

-d name
Name the working directory something other than the module name.
-e prog
Specify a program prog to run whenever files in a module are exported. prog runs with a single argument, the module name.
-i prog
Specify a program prog to run whenever files in a module are committed. prog runs with a single argument, the full pathname of the affected directory in a source repository. The commitinfo, loginfo, and verifymsg files provide other ways to call a program on commit.
-o prog
Specify a program prog to run whenever files in a module are checked out. prog runs with a single argument, the module name.
-s status
Assign a status to the module. When the module file is printed with cvs checkout -s the modules are sorted according to primarily module status, and secondarily according to the module name. This option has no other meaning. You can use this option for several things besides status: for instance, list the person that is responsible for this module.
-t prog
Specify a program prog to run whenever files in a module are tagged with rtag. prog runs with two arguments: the module name and the symbolic tag specified to rtag. It is not run when tag is executed. Generally you will find that taginfo is a better solution (see user-defined logging).


Node:Module program options, Previous:Module options, Up:modules

How the modules file "program options" programs are run

For checkout, rtag, and export, the program is server-based, and as such the following applies:-

If using remote access methods (pserver, ext, etc.), CVSNT will execute this program on the server from a temporary directory. The path is searched for this program.

If using "local access" (on a local or remote NFS filesystem, i.e. repository set just to a path), the program will be executed from the newly checked-out tree, if found there, or alternatively searched for in the path if not.

The programs are all run after the operation has effectively completed.


Node:Wrappers, Next:, Previous:modules, Up:Administrative files

The cvswrappers file

Wrappers refers to a CVSNT feature which lets you control certain settings based on the name of the file which is being operated on. The settings are -k for binary files, and -m for nonmergeable text files.

The -m option specifies the merge methodology that should be used when a non-binary file is updated. MERGE means the usual CVSNT behavior: try to merge the files. COPY means that cvs update will refuse to merge files, as it also does for files specified as binary with -kb (but if the file is specified as binary, there is no need to specify -m 'COPY'). CVSNT will provide the user with the two versions of the files, and require the user using mechanisms outside CVSNT, to insert any necessary changes. WARNING: do not use COPY with CVSNT 1.9 or earlier-such versions of CVSNT will copy one version of your file over the other, wiping out the previous contents. The -m wrapper option only affects behavior when merging is done on update; it does not affect how files are stored. See Binary files, for more on binary files.

The basic format of the file cvswrappers is:

     wildcard     [option value][option value]...
     
     where option is one of
     -m           update methodology      value: MERGE or COPY
     -k           keyword expansion       value: expansion mode
     
     and value is a single-quote delimited value.
     

For example, the following command imports a directory, treating files whose name ends in .exe as binary:

     cvs import -I ! -W "*.exe -k 'b'" first-dir vendortag reltag
     


Node:commit files, Next:, Previous:Wrappers, Up:Administrative files

The commit support files

The -i flag in the modules file can be used to run a certain program whenever files are committed (see modules). The files described in this section provide other, more flexible, ways to run programs whenever something is committed.

There are three kind of programs that can be run on commit. They are specified in files in the repository, as described below. The following table summarizes the file names and the purpose of the corresponding programs.

commitinfo
The program is responsible for checking that the commit is allowed. If it exits with a non-zero exit status the commit will be aborted.
verifymsg
The specified program is used to evaluate the log message, and possibly verify that it contains all required fields. This is most useful in combination with the rcsinfo file, which can hold a log message template (see rcsinfo).
editinfo
The specified program is used to edit the log message, and possibly verify that it contains all required fields. This is most useful in combination with the rcsinfo file, which can hold a log message template (see rcsinfo). (obsolete)
loginfo
The specified program is called when the commit is complete. It receives the log message and some additional information and can store the log message in a file, or mail it to appropriate persons, or maybe post it to a local newsgroup, or... Your imagination is the limit!
postcommit
The specified program is called when the commit is complete, and all locks have been released from the repository prior to returning to the user. This is useful to maintain checked-out copies of repositories and to perform cvs actions after a commit.
historyinfo
This is called when any action which causes an entry in the history file is initiated. Its standard input receives the line to be written to the history log, in a semi-compressed format.


Node:syntax, Previous:commit files, Up:commit files

The common syntax

The administrative files such as commitinfo, loginfo, rcsinfo, verifymsg, etc., all have a common format. The purpose of the files are described later on. The common syntax is described here.

Each line contains the following:

Blank lines are ignored. Lines that start with the character # are treated as comments. Long lines unfortunately can not be broken in two parts in any way.

The first regular expression that matches the current directory name in the repository is used. The rest of the line is used as a file name or command-line as appropriate.


Node:commitinfo, Next:, Previous:commit files, Up:Administrative files

Commitinfo

The commitinfo file defines programs to execute whenever cvs commit is about to execute. These programs are used for pre-commit checking to verify that the modified, added and removed files are really ready to be committed. This could be used, for instance, to verify that the changed files conform to to your site's standards for coding practice.

As mentioned earlier, each line in the commitinfo file consists of a regular expression and a command-line template. The template can include a program name and any number of arguments you wish to supply to it. The full path to the current source repository is appended to the template, followed by the file names of any files involved in the commit (added, removed, and modified files).

The first line with a regular expression matching the directory within the repository will be used. If the command returns a non-zero exit status the commit will be aborted.

If the repository name does not match any of the regular expressions in this file, the DEFAULT line is used, if it is specified.

All occurrences of the name ALL appearing as a regular expression are used in addition to the first matching regular expression or the name DEFAULT.

Note: when CVSNT is accessing a remote repository, commitinfo will be run on the remote (i.e., server) side, not the client side (see Remote repositories).


Node:postcommit, Next:, Previous:commitinfo, Up:Administrative files

Postcommit

After commit has completed, the actions in this file are executed so that you can perform operations on the repository before returning.

Typical uses of this would be to keep a checked-out copy of a repository.


Node:verifymsg, Next:, Previous:postcommit, Up:Administrative files

Verifying log messages

Once you have entered a log message, you can evaluate that message to check for specific content, such as a bug ID. Use the verifymsg file to specify a program that is used to verify the log message. This program could be a simple script that checks that the entered message contains the required fields.

The verifymsg file is often most useful together with the rcsinfo file, which can be used to specify a log message template.

Each line in the verifymsg file consists of a regular expression and a command-line template. The template must include a program name, and can include any number of arguments. The full path to the current log message template file is appended to the template.

One thing that should be noted is that the ALL keyword is not supported. If more than one matching line is found, the first one is used. This can be useful for specifying a default verification script in a directory, and then overriding it in a subdirectory.

If the repository name does not match any of the regular expressions in this file, the DEFAULT line is used, if it is specified.

If the verification script exits with a non-zero exit status, the commit is aborted.

Note that the verification script cannot change the log message; it can merely accept it or reject it.

The following is a little silly example of a verifymsg file, together with the corresponding rcsinfo file, the log message template and an verification script. We begin with the log message template. We want to always record a bug-id number on the first line of the log message. The rest of log message is free text. The following template is found in the file /usr/cvssupport/tc.template.

     BugId:
     

The script /usr/cvssupport/bugid.verify is used to evaluate the log message.

     #!/bin/sh
     #
     #       bugid.verify filename
     #
     #  Verify that the log message contains a valid bugid
     #  on the first line.
     #
     if head -1 < $1 | grep '^BugId:[ ]*[0-9][0-9]*$' > /dev/null; then
         exit 0
     else
         echo "No BugId found."
         exit 1
     fi
     

The verifymsg file contains this line:

     ^tc     /usr/cvssupport/bugid.verify
     

The rcsinfo file contains this line:

     ^tc     /usr/cvssupport/tc.template
     


Node:editinfo, Next:, Previous:verifymsg, Up:Administrative files

Editinfo

NOTE: The editinfo feature has been rendered obsolete. To set a default editor for log messages use the EDITOR environment variable (see Environment variables) or the -e global option (see Global options). See verifymsg, for information on the use of the verifymsg feature for evaluating log messages.

If you want to make sure that all log messages look the same way, you can use the editinfo file to specify a program that is used to edit the log message. This program could be a custom-made editor that always enforces a certain style of the log message, or maybe a simple shell script that calls an editor, and checks that the entered message contains the required fields.

If no matching line is found in the editinfo file, the editor specified in the environment variable $CVSEDITOR is used instead. If that variable is not set, then the environment variable $EDITOR is used instead. If that variable is not set a default will be used. See Committing your changes.

The editinfo file is often most useful together with the rcsinfo file, which can be used to specify a log message template.

Each line in the editinfo file consists of a regular expression and a command-line template. The template must include a program name, and can include any number of arguments. The full path to the current log message template file is appended to the template.

One thing that should be noted is that the ALL keyword is not supported. If more than one matching line is found, the first one is used. This can be useful for specifying a default edit script in a module, and then overriding it in a subdirectory.

If the repository name does not match any of the regular expressions in this file, the DEFAULT line is used, if it is specified.

If the edit script exits with a non-zero exit status, the commit is aborted.

Note: when CVSNT is accessing a remote repository, or when the -m or -F options to cvs commit are used, editinfo will not be consulted. There is no good workaround for this; use verifymsg instead.


Node:editinfo example, Previous:editinfo, Up:editinfo

Editinfo example

The following is a little silly example of a editinfo file, together with the corresponding rcsinfo file, the log message template and an editor script. We begin with the log message template. We want to always record a bug-id number on the first line of the log message. The rest of log message is free text. The following template is found in the file /usr/cvssupport/tc.template.

     BugId:
     

The script /usr/cvssupport/bugid.edit is used to edit the log message.

     #!/bin/sh
     #
     #       bugid.edit filename
     #
     #  Call $EDITOR on FILENAME, and verify that the
     #  resulting file contains a valid bugid on the first
     #  line.
     if [ "x$EDITOR" = "x" ]; then EDITOR=vi; fi
     if [ "x$CVSEDITOR" = "x" ]; then CVSEDITOR=$EDITOR; fi
     $CVSEDITOR $1
     until head -1|grep '^BugId:[ ]*[0-9][0-9]*$' < $1
     do  echo -n  "No BugId found.  Edit again? ([y]/n)"
         read ans
         case ${ans} in
             n*) exit 1;;
         esac
         $CVSEDITOR $1
     done
     

The editinfo file contains this line:

     ^tc     /usr/cvssupport/bugid.edit
     

The rcsinfo file contains this line:

     ^tc     /usr/cvssupport/tc.template
     


Node:loginfo, Next:, Previous:editinfo, Up:Administrative files

Loginfo

The loginfo file is used to control where cvs commit log information is sent. The first entry on a line is a regular expression which is tested against the directory that the change is being made to, relative to the $CVSROOT. If a match is found, then the remainder of the line is a filter program that should expect log information on its standard input.

If the repository name does not match any of the regular expressions in this file, the DEFAULT line is used, if it is specified.

All occurrences of the name ALL appearing as a regular expression are used in addition to the first matching regular expression or DEFAULT.

The first matching regular expression is used.

See commit files, for a description of the syntax of the loginfo file.

The user may specify a format string as part of the filter. The string is composed of a % followed by a space, or followed by a single format character, or followed by a set of format characters surrounded by { and } as separators. The format characters are:

s
file name
V
old version number (pre-checkin)
v
new version number (post-checkin)

All other characters that appear in a format string expand to an empty field (commas separating fields are still provided).

For example, some valid format strings are %, %s, %{s}, and %{sVv}.

The output will be a string of tokens separated by spaces. For backwards compatibility, the first token will be the repository subdirectory. The rest of the tokens will be comma-delimited lists of the information requested in the format string. For example, if /u/src/master/yoyodyne/tc is the repository, %{sVv} is the format string, and three files (ChangeLog, Makefile, foo.c) were modified, the output might be:

     yoyodyne/tc ChangeLog,1.1,1.2 Makefile,1.3,1.4 foo.c,1.12,1.13
     

As another example, %{} means that only the name of the repository will be generated.

Note: when CVSNT is accessing a remote repository, loginfo will be run on the remote (i.e., server) side, not the client side (see Remote repositories).


Node:loginfo example, Next:, Previous:loginfo, Up:loginfo

Loginfo example

The following loginfo file, together with the tiny shell-script below, appends all log messages to the file $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/commitlog, and any commits to the administrative files (inside the CVSROOT directory) are also logged in /usr/adm/cvsroot-log. Commits to the prog1 directory are mailed to ceder.

     ALL             /usr/local/bin/cvs-log $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/commitlog $USER
     ^CVSROOT        /usr/local/bin/cvs-log /usr/adm/cvsroot-log
     ^prog1          Mail -s %s ceder
     

The shell-script /usr/local/bin/cvs-log looks like this:

     #!/bin/sh
     (echo "------------------------------------------------------";
      echo -n $2"  ";
      date;
      echo;
      cat) >> $1
     


Node:Keeping a checked out copy, Previous:loginfo example, Up:loginfo

Keeping a checked out copy

It is often useful to maintain a directory tree which contains files which correspond to the latest version in the repository. For example, other developers might want to refer to the latest sources without having to check them out, or you might be maintaining a web site with CVSNT and want every checkin to cause the files used by the web server to be updated.

The way to do this is by having loginfo invoke cvs update. Doing so in the naive way will cause a problem with locks, so the cvs update must be run in the background. Here is an example for unix (this should all be on one line):

     ^cyclic-pages		(date; cat; (sleep 2; cd /u/www/local-docs;
      cvs -q update -d) &) >> $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/updatelog 2>&1
     

This will cause checkins to repository directories starting with cyclic-pages to update the checked out tree in /u/www/local-docs.


Node:rcsinfo, Next:, Previous:loginfo, Up:Administrative files

Rcsinfo

The rcsinfo file can be used to specify a form to edit when filling out the commit log. The rcsinfo file has a syntax similar to the verifymsg, commitinfo and loginfo files. See syntax. Unlike the other files the second part is not a command-line template. Instead, the part after the regular expression should be a full pathname to a file containing the log message template.

If the repository name does not match any of the regular expressions in this file, the DEFAULT line is used, if it is specified.

All occurrences of the name ALL appearing as a regular expression are used in addition to the first matching regular expression or DEFAULT.

The log message template will be used as a default log message. If you specify a log message with cvs commit -m message or cvs commit -f file that log message will override the template.

See verifymsg, for an example rcsinfo file.

When CVSNT is accessing a remote repository, the contents of rcsinfo at the time a directory is first checked out will specify a template which does not then change. If you edit rcsinfo or its templates, you may need to check out a new working directory.


Node:historyinfo, Next:, Previous:rcsinfo, Up:Administrative files

Advanced history logging

Each time an action is performed on the repository that generates a line in the history file, scripts historyinfo are executed so that you can perform advanced logging, for example to a separate machine.

The script is passed a line of history via its standard input in the following format:

     Action|Date|Repository|Directory|Version|File
     


Node:cvsignore, Next:, Previous:historyinfo, Up:Administrative files

Ignoring files via cvsignore

There are certain file names that frequently occur inside your working copy, but that you don't want to put under CVSNT control. Examples are all the object files that you get while you compile your sources. Normally, when you run cvs update, it prints a line for each file it encounters that it doesn't know about (see update output).

CVSNT has a list of files (or sh(1) file name patterns) that it should ignore while running update, import and release. This list is constructed in the following way.

In any of the 5 places listed above, a single exclamation mark (!) clears the ignore list. This can be used if you want to store any file which normally is ignored by CVSNT.

Specifying -I ! to cvs import will import everything, which is generally what you want to do if you are importing files from a pristine distribution or any other source which is known to not contain any extraneous files. However, looking at the rules above you will see there is a fly in the ointment; if the distribution contains any .cvsignore files, then the patterns from those files will be processed even if -I ! is specified. The only workaround is to remove the .cvsignore files in order to do the import. Because this is awkward, in the future -I ! might be modified to override .cvsignore files in each directory.

Note that the syntax of the ignore files consists of a series of lines, each of which contains a space separated list of filenames. This offers no clean way to specify filenames which contain spaces, but you can use a workaround like foo?bar to match a file named foo bar (it also matches fooxbar and the like). Also note that there is currently no way to specify comments.


Node:checkoutlist, Next:, Previous:cvsignore, Up:Administrative files

The checkoutlist file

It may be helpful to use CVSNT to maintain your own files in the CVSROOT directory. For example, suppose that you have a script logcommit.pl which you run by including the following line in the commitinfo administrative file:

     ALL   $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/logcommit.pl
     

To maintain logcommit.pl with CVSNT you would add the following line to the checkoutlist administrative file:

     logcommit.pl
     

The format of checkoutlist is one line for each file that you want to maintain using CVSNT, giving the name of the file.

After setting up checkoutlist in this fashion, the files listed there will function just like CVSNT's built-in administrative files. For example, when checking in one of the files you should get a message such as:

     cvs commit: Rebuilding administrative file database
     

and the checked out copy in the CVSROOT directory should be updated.

Note that listing passwd (see Authentication server) in checkoutlist is not recommended for security reasons.

For information about keeping a checkout out copy in a more general context than the one provided by checkoutlist, see Keeping a checked out copy.


Node:history file, Next:, Previous:checkoutlist, Up:Administrative files

The history file

The file $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/history is used to log information for the history command (see history). This file must be created to turn on logging. This is done automatically if the cvs init command is used to set up the repository (see Creating a repository).

The file format of the history file is documented only in comments in the CVSNT source code, but generally programs should use the cvs history command to access it anyway, in case the format changes with future releases of CVSNT.


Node:Variables, Next:, Previous:history file, Up:Administrative files

Expansions in administrative files

Sometimes in writing an administrative file, you might want the file to be able to know various things based on environment CVSNT is running in. There are several mechanisms to do that.

To find the home directory of the user running CVSNT (from the HOME environment variable), use ~ followed by / or the end of the line. Likewise for the home directory of user, use ~user. These variables are expanded on the server machine, and don't get any reasonable expansion if pserver (see Password authenticated) is in use; therefore user variables (see below) may be a better choice to customize behavior based on the user running CVSNT.

One may want to know about various pieces of information internal to CVSNT. A CVSNT internal variable has the syntax ${variable}, where variable starts with a letter and consists of alphanumeric characters and _. If the character following variable is a non-alphanumeric character other than _, the { and } can be omitted. The CVSNT internal variables are:

CVSROOT
This is the value of the CVSNT root in use. See Repository, for a description of the various ways to specify this.
RCSBIN
In CVS 1.9.18 and older, this specified the directory where CVSNT was looking for RCS programs. Because CVSNT no longer runs RCS programs, specifying this internal variable is now an error.
CVSEDITOR
VISUAL
EDITOR
These all expand to the same value, which is the editor that CVSNT is using. See Global options, for how to specify this.
USER
Username of the user running CVSNT (on the CVSNT server machine). When using pserver, this is the user specified in the repository specification which need not be the same as the username the server is running as (see Authentication server).
CVSPID
Parent process ID of the CVSNT process.
SESSIONID
COMMITID
Unique Session ID of CVSNT process. This is a random string of printable characters that may be up to 256 characters long.

If you want to pass a value to the administrative files which the user who is running CVSNT can specify, use a user variable. To expand a user variable, the administrative file contains ${=variable}. To set a user variable, specify the global option -s to CVSNT, with argument variable=value. It may be particularly useful to specify this option via .cvsrc (see cvsrc).

For example, if you want the administrative file to refer to a test directory you might create a user variable TESTDIR. Then if CVSNT is invoked as

     cvs -s TESTDIR=/work/local/tests
     

and the administrative file contains sh ${=TESTDIR}/runtests, then that string is expanded to sh /work/local/tests/runtests.

All other strings containing $ are reserved; there is no way to quote a $ character so that $ represents itself.

Environment variables passed to administrative files are:


CVS_USER
The CVSNT-specific username provided by the user, if it can be provided (currently just for the pserver access method), and to the empty string otherwise. (CVS_USER and USER may differ when $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/passwd is used to map cvs usernames to system usernames.)


Node:config, Previous:Variables, Up:Administrative files

The CVSROOT/config configuration file

The administrative file config contains various miscellaneous settings which affect the behavior of CVSNT. The syntax is slightly different from the other administrative files. Variables are not expanded. Lines which start with # are considered comments. Other lines consist of a keyword, =, and a value. Note that this syntax is very strict. Extraneous spaces or tabs are not permitted.

Currently defined keywords are:

RCSBIN=bindir
For CVS 1.9.12 through 1.9.18, this setting told CVSNT to look for RCS programs in the bindir directory. Current versions of CVSNT do not run RCS programs; for compatibility this setting is accepted, but it does nothing.
SystemAuth=value
If value is yes, then pserver should check for users in the system's user database if not found in CVSROOT/passwd. If it is no, then all pserver users must exist in CVSROOT/passwd. The default is yes. For more on pserver, see Password authenticated.
TopLevelAdmin=value
Modify the checkout command to create a CVS directory at the top level of the new working directory, in addition to CVS directories created within checked-out directories. The default value is no.

This option is useful if you find yourself performing many commands at the top level of your working directory, rather than in one of the checked out subdirectories. The CVS directory created there will mean you don't have to specify CVSROOT for each command. It also provides a place for the CVS/Template file (see Working directory storage).

LockDir=directory
Put CVSNT lock files in directory rather than directly in the repository. This is useful if you want to let users read from the repository while giving them write access only to directory, not to the repository. You need to create directory, but CVSNT will create subdirectories of directory as it needs them. For information on CVSNT locks, see Concurrency.

Before enabling the LockDir option, make sure that you have tracked down and removed any copies of CVSNT 1.9 or older. Such versions neither support LockDir, nor will give an error indicating that they don't support it. The result, if this is allowed to happen, is that some CVSNT users will put the locks one place, and others will put them another place, and therefore the repository could become corrupted. CVS 1.10 does not support LockDir but it will print a warning if run on a repository with LockDir enabled.

LockServer=hostname[:port]
Uses the CVSNT lock server to handle locking rather than using files in the repository. This is useful if you want to let users read from the repository while giving them write access only to directory, not to the repository. For information on CVSNT locks, see Concurrency.

Before enabling the LockServer option, make sure that you have tracked down and removed any copies of CVSNT 1.9 or older. Such versions neither support LockServer, nor will give an error indicating that they don't support it. The result, if this is allowed to happen, is that some CVSNT users will put the locks one place, and others will put them another place, and therefore the repository could become corrupted. CVS 1.10 does not support LockServer but it will print a warning if run on a repository with LockServer enabled.

LogHistory=value
Control what is logged to the CVSROOT/history file. Default of TOFEWGCMAR (or simply all) will log all transactions. Any subset of the default is legal. (For example, to only log transactions that modify the *,v files, use LogHistory=TMAR.)
AtomicCommits=value
Enable atomic operations. All operations for a command are done in a temporary directory and 'committed' at the last moment. In the event of server failure the entire operation is rolled back. Note that this may leave clients in an indeterminate state, and a cvs update may be required to restore the sandbox.


Node:Environment variables, Next:, Previous:Administrative files, Up:Top

All environment variables which affect CVS

This is a complete list of all environment variables that affect CVSNT.

$CVSIGNORE
A whitespace-separated list of file name patterns that CVSNT should ignore. See cvsignore.
$CVSWRAPPERS
A whitespace-separated list of file name patterns that CVSNT should treat as wrappers. See Wrappers.
$CVSREAD
If this is set, checkout and update will try hard to make the files in your working directory read-only. When this is not set, the default behavior is to permit modification of your working files.
$CVSUMASK
Controls permissions of files in the repository. See File permissions.
$CVSROOT
Should contain the full pathname to the root of the CVSNT source repository (where the RCS files are kept). This information must be available to CVSNT for most commands to execute; if $CVSROOT is not set, or if you wish to override it for one invocation, you can supply it on the command line: cvs -d cvsroot cvs_command... Once you have checked out a working directory, CVSNT stores the appropriate root (in the file CVS/Root), so normally you only need to worry about this when initially checking out a working directory.
$EDITOR
$CVSEDITOR
$VISUAL
Specifies the program to use for recording log messages during commit. $CVSEDITOR overrides $EDITOR. See Committing your changes.
$PATH
If $RCSBIN is not set, and no path is compiled into CVSNT, it will use $PATH to try to find all programs it uses.
$HOME

$HOMEPATH

$HOMEDRIVE
Used to locate the directory where the .cvsrc file, and other such files, are searched. On Unix, CVSNT just checks for HOME. On Windows NT, the system will set HOMEDRIVE, for example to d: and HOMEPATH, for example to \joe. On Windows 95, you'll probably need to set HOMEDRIVE and HOMEPATH yourself.
$CVS_EXT
$CVS_RSH
Specifies the external program which CVSNT connects with, when :ext: access method is specified. This replaces the CVS_RSH environment used in older implementations of cvs.

The CVS_EXT variable parsed as a formatting string specifying the command to pass to invoke the remote server. The default string is: ssh -l %u %h The %u parameter is replaced with the username specified in the CVSROOT (or the current username if none is specified) and the %h parameter is replaced with the hostname specified in the CVSROOT.

The CVS_EXT string has the string ' cvs server' appended to it, and this is then passed to the command processor for execution.

see Connecting via ssh.

$CVS_PASSFILE
Used in client-server mode when accessing the cvs login server. Default value is $HOME/.cvspass. see Authentication client
$CVS_CLIENT_PORT
Used in client-server mode when accessing the server via Kerberos, GSSAPI, or CVSNT's password authentication if the port is not specified in $CVSROOT. see Remote repositories
$CVS_CLIENT_LOG
Used for debugging only in client-server mode. If set, everything sent to the server is logged into $CVS_CLIENT_LOG.in and everything sent from the server is logged into $CVS_CLIENT_LOG.out.
$CVS_SERVER_SLEEP
Used only for debugging the server side in client-server mode. If set, delays the start of the server child process the specified amount of seconds so that you can attach to it with a debugger.
$COMSPEC
Used under DOS/Windows and OS/2 only. It specifies the name of the command interpreter and defaults to CMD.EXE.
$TMPDIR
$TMP
$TEMP
Directory in which temporary files are located. The CVSNT server uses TMPDIR. See Global options, for a description of how to specify this. Some parts of CVSNT will always use /tmp (via the tmpnam function provided by the system).

On Windows NT, TMP is used (via the _tempnam function provided by the system).

The patch program which is used by the CVSNT client uses TMPDIR, and if it is not set, uses /tmp (at least with GNU patch 2.1). Note that if your server and client are both running CVSNT 1.9.10 or later, CVSNT will not invoke an external patch program.


Node:Compatibility, Next:, Previous:Environment variables, Up:Top

Compatibility between CVS Versions

The repository format is compatible going back to CVSNT 1.3. But see Watches Compatibility, if you have copies of CVSNT 1.6 or older and you want to use the optional developer communication features.

The working directory format is compatible going back to CVSNT 1.5. It did change between CVSNT 1.3 and CVSNT 1.5. If you run CVSNT 1.5 or newer on a working directory checked out with CVSNT 1.3, CVSNT will convert it, but to go back to CVSNT 1.3 you need to check out a new working directory with CVSNT 1.3.

The remote protocol is interoperable going back to CVSNT 1.5, but no further (1.5 was the first official release with the remote protocol, but some older versions might still be floating around). In many cases you need to upgrade both the client and the server to take advantage of new features and bugfixes, however.

cvsnt is largely compatible with older versions of cvs, however newer features of cvsnt such as permissions might not be recognised by older clients.


Node:Troubleshooting, Next:, Previous:Compatibility, Up:Top

Troubleshooting

If you are having trouble with CVSNT, this appendix may help. If there is a particular error message which you are seeing, then you can look up the message alphabetically. If not, you can look through the section on other problems to see if your problem is mentioned there.


Node:Error messages, Next:, Previous:Troubleshooting, Up:Troubleshooting

Partial list of error messages

Here is a partial list of error messages that you may see from CVSNT. It is not a complete list--CVSNT is capable of printing many, many error messages, often with parts of them supplied by the operating system, but the intention is to list the common and/or potentially confusing error messages.

The messages are alphabetical, but introductory text such as cvs update: is not considered in ordering them.

In some cases the list includes messages printed by old versions of CVSNT (partly because users may not be sure which version of CVSNT they are using at any particular moment).

cvs command: authorization failed: server host rejected access
This is a generic response when trying to connect to a pserver server which chooses not to provide a specific reason for denying authorization. Check that the username and password specified are correct and that the CVSROOT specified is allowed by --allow-root in inetd.conf. See Password authenticated.
file:line: Assertion 'text' failed
The exact format of this message may vary depending on your system. It indicates a bug in CVSNT, which can be handled as described in BUGS.
cvs command: conflict: removed file was modified by second party
This message indicates that you removed a file, and someone else modified it. To resolve the conflict, first run cvs add file. If desired, look at the other party's modification to decide whether you still want to remove it. If you don't want to remove it, stop here. If you do want to remove it, proceed with cvs remove file and commit your removal.
cannot change permissions on temporary directory
          Operation not permitted
          
This message has been happening in a non-reproducible, occasional way when we run the client/server testsuite, both on Red Hat Linux 3.0.3 and 4.1. We haven't been able to figure out what causes it, nor is it known whether it is specific to linux (or even to this particular machine!). If the problem does occur on other unices, Operation not permitted would be likely to read Not owner or whatever the system in question uses for the unix EPERM error. If you have any information to add, please let us know as described in BUGS. If you experience this error while using CVSNT, retrying the operation which produced it should work fine.
cvs [server aborted]: Cannot check out files into the repository itself
The obvious cause for this message (especially for non-client/server CVSNT) is that the CVSNT root is, for example, /usr/local/cvsroot and you try to check out files when you are in a subdirectory, such as /usr/local/cvsroot/test. However, there is a more subtle cause, which is that the temporary directory on the server is set to a subdirectory of the root (which is also not allowed). If this is the problem, set the temporary directory to somewhere else, for example /var/tmp; see TMPDIR in Environment variables, for how to set the temporary directory.
cannot open CVS/Entries for reading: No such file or directory
This generally indicates a CVSNT internal error, and can be handled as with other CVSNT bugs (see BUGS). Usually there is a workaround--the exact nature of which would depend on the situation but which hopefully could be figured out.
cvs [init aborted]: cannot open CVS/Root: No such file or directory
This message is harmless. Provided it is not accompanied by other errors, the operation has completed successfully. This message should not occur with current versions of CVSNT, but it is documented here for the benefit of CVSNT 1.9 and older.
cvs [checkout aborted]: cannot rename file file to CVS/,,file: Invalid argument
This message has been reported as intermittently happening with CVSNT 1.9 on Solaris 2.5. The cause is unknown; if you know more about what causes it, let us know as described in BUGS.
cvs [command aborted]: cannot start server via rcmd
This, unfortunately, is a rather nonspecific error message which CVSNT 1.9 will print if you are running the CVSNT client and it is having trouble connecting to the server. Current versions of CVSNT should print a much more specific error message. If you get this message when you didn't mean to run the client at all, you probably forgot to specify :local:, as described in Repository.
ci: file,v: bad diff output line: Binary files - and /tmp/T2a22651 differ
CVSNT 1.9 and older will print this message when trying to check in a binary file if RCS is not correctly installed. Re-read the instructions that came with your RCS distribution and the INSTALL file in the CVSNT distribution. Alternately, upgrade to a current version of CVSNT, which checks in files itself rather than via RCS.
cvs checkout: could not check out file
With CVSNT 1.9, this can mean that the co program (part of RCS) returned a failure. It should be preceded by another error message, however it has been observed without another error message and the cause is not well-understood. With the current version of CVSNT, which does not run co, if this message occurs without another error message, it is definitely a CVSNT bug (see BUGS).
cvs [login aborted]: could not find out home directory
This means that you need to set the environment variables that CVSNT uses to locate your home directory. See the discussion of HOME, HOMEDRIVE, and HOMEPATH in Environment variables.
cvs update: could not merge revision rev of file: No such file or directory
CVSNT 1.9 and older will print this message if there was a problem finding the rcsmerge program. Make sure that it is in your PATH, or upgrade to a current version of CVSNT, which does not require an external rcsmerge program.
cvs [update aborted]: could not patch file: No such file or directory
This means that there was a problem finding the patch program. Make sure that it is in your PATH. Note that despite appearances the message is not referring to whether it can find file. If both the client and the server are running a current version of CVSNT, then there is no need for an external patch program and you should not see this message. But if either client or server is running CVSNT 1.9, then you need patch.
cvs update: could not patch file; will refetch
This means that for whatever reason the client was unable to apply a patch that the server sent. The message is nothing to be concerned about, because inability to apply the patch only slows things down and has no effect on what CVSNT does.
dying gasps from server unexpected
There is a known bug in the server for CVS 1.9.18 and older which can cause this. For me, this was reproducible if I used the -t global option. It was fixed by Andy Piper's 14 Nov 1997 change to src/filesubr.c, if anyone is curious. If you see the message, you probably can just retry the operation which failed, or if you have discovered information concerning its cause, please let us know as described in BUGS.
end of file from server (consult above messages if any)
The most common cause for this message is if you are using an external rsh program and it exited with an error. In this case the rsh program should have printed a message, which will appear before the above message. For more information on setting up a CVSNT client and server, see Remote repositories.
cvs [update aborted]: EOF in key in RCS file file,v
cvs [checkout aborted]: EOF while looking for end of string in RCS file file,v
This means that there is a syntax error in the given RCS file. Note that this might be true even if RCS can read the file OK; CVSNT does more error checking of errors in the RCS file. That is why you may see this message when upgrading from CVS 1.9 to CVS 1.10. The likely cause for the original corruption is hardware, the operating system, or the like. Of course, if you find a case in which CVSNT seems to corrupting the file, by all means report it, (see BUGS). There are quite a few variations of this error message, depending on exactly where in the RCS file CVSNT finds the syntax error.
cvs commit: Executing 'mkmodules'
This means that your repository is set up for a version of CVSNT prior to CVSNT 1.8. When using CVSNT 1.8 or later, the above message will be preceded by
          cvs commit: Rebuilding administrative file database
          

If you see both messages, the database is being rebuilt twice, which is unnecessary but harmless. If you wish to avoid the duplication, and you have no versions of CVSNT 1.7 or earlier in use, remove -i mkmodules every place it appears in your modules file. For more information on the modules file, see modules.

missing author
Typically this can happen if you created an RCS file with your username set to empty. CVSNT will, bogusly, create an illegal RCS file with no value for the author field. The solution is to make sure your username is set to a non-empty value and re-create the RCS file.
cvs [checkout aborted]: no such tag tag
This message means that CVSNT isn't familiar with the tag tag. Usually this means that you have mistyped a tag name; however there are (relatively obscure) cases in which CVSNT will require you to try a few other CVSNT commands involving that tag, before you find one which will cause CVSNT to update the val-tags file; see discussion of val-tags in File permissions. You only need to worry about this once for a given tag; when a tag is listed in val-tags, it stays there. Note that using -f to not require tag matches does not override this check; see Common options.
*PANIC* administration files missing
This typically means that there is a directory named CVSNT but it does not contain the administrative files which CVSNT puts in a CVS directory. If the problem is that you created a CVS directory via some mechanism other than CVSNT, then the answer is simple, use a name other than CVSNT. If not, it indicates a CVSNT bug (see BUGS).
rcs error: Unknown option: -x,v/
This message will be followed by a usage message for RCS. It means that you have an old version of RCS (probably supplied with your operating system), as well as an old version of CVSNT. CVS 1.9.18 and earlier only work with RCS version 5 and later; current versions of CVSNT do not run RCS programs.
cvs [server aborted]: received broken pipe signal
This message seems to be caused by a hard-to-track-down bug in CVSNT or the systems it runs on (we don't know--we haven't tracked it down yet!). It seems to happen only after a CVSNT command has completed, and you should be able to just ignore the message. However, if you have discovered information concerning its cause, please let us know as described in BUGS.
Too many arguments!
This message is typically printed by the log.pl script which is in the contrib directory in the CVSNT source distribution. In some versions of CVSNT, log.pl has been part of the default CVSNT installation. The log.pl script gets called from the loginfo administrative file. Check that the arguments passed in loginfo match what your version of log.pl expects. In particular, the log.pl from CVSNT 1.3 and older expects the logfile as an argument whereas the log.pl from CVSNT 1.5 and newer expects the logfile to be specified with a -f option. Of course, if you don't need log.pl you can just comment it out of loginfo.
cvs [update aborted]: unexpected EOF reading file,v
See EOF in key in RCS file.
cvs [login aborted]: unrecognized auth response from server
This message typically means that the server is not set up properly. For example, if inetd.conf points to a nonexistent cvs executable. To debug it further, find the log file which inetd writes (/var/log/messages or whatever inetd uses on your system). For details, see Connection, and Authentication server.
cvs server: cannot open /root/.cvsignore: Permission denied
cvs [server aborted]: can't chdir(/root): Permission denied
See Connection.
cvs commit: Up-to-date check failed for `file'
This means that someone else has committed a change to that file since the last time that you did a cvs update. So before proceeding with your cvs commit you need to cvs update. CVSNT will merge the changes that you made and the changes that the other person made. If it does not detect any conflicts it will report M file and you are ready to cvs commit. If it detects conflicts it will print a message saying so, will report C file, and you need to manually resolve the conflict. For more details on this process see Conflicts example.
Usage: diff3 [-exEX3 [-i | -m] [-L label1 -L label3]] file1 file2 file3
          Only one of [exEX3] allowed
          
This indicates a problem with the installation of diff3 and rcsmerge. Specifically rcsmerge was compiled to look for GNU diff3, but it is finding unix diff3 instead. The exact text of the message will vary depending on the system. The simplest solution is to upgrade to a current version of CVSNT, which does not rely on external rcsmerge or diff3 programs.
warning: unrecognized response `text' from cvs server
If text contains a valid response (such as ok) followed by an extra carriage return character (on many systems this will cause the second part of the message to overwrite the first part), then it probably means that you are using the :ext: access method with a version of rsh, such as most non-unix rsh versions, which does not by default provide a transparent data stream. In such cases you probably want to try :server: instead of :ext:. If text is something else, this may signify a problem with your CVSNT server. Double-check your installation against the instructions for setting up the CVSNT server.
cvs commit: [time] waiting for user's lock in directory
This is a normal message, not an error. See Concurrency, for more details.
cvs commit: warning: editor session failed
This means that the editor which CVSNT is using exits with a nonzero exit status. Some versions of vi will do this even when there was not a problem editing the file. If so, point the CVSEDITOR environment variable to a small script such as:
          #!/bin/sh
          vi $*
          exit 0
          


Node:Connection, Next:, Previous:Error messages, Up:Troubleshooting

Trouble making a connection to a CVS server

This section concerns what to do if you are having trouble making a connection to a CVSNT server. If you are running the CVSNT command line client running on Windows, first upgrade the client to CVSNT 1.9.12 or later. The error reporting in earlier versions provided much less information about what the problem was. If the client is non-Windows, CVSNT 1.9 should be fine.

If the error messages are not sufficient to track down the problem, the next steps depend largely on which access method you are using.

:ext:
Try running the ssh program from the command line. For example: "ssh servername cvs -v" should print CVSNT version information. If this doesn't work, you need to fix it before you can worry about CVSNT problems.
:server:
You don't need a command line rsh program to use this access method, but if you have an rsh program around, it may be useful as a debugging tool. Follow the directions given for :ext:.
:pserver:
Errors along the lines of "connection refused" typically indicate that inetd isn't even listening for connections on port 2401 whereas errors like "connection reset by peer" or "recv() from server: EOF" typically indicate that inetd is listening for connections but is unable to start CVSNT (this is frequently caused by having an incorrect path in inetd.conf). "unrecognized auth response" errors are caused by a bad command line in inetd.conf, typically an invalid option or forgetting to put the authserver command at the end of the line. Another less common problem is invisible control characters that your editor "helpfully" added without you noticing.

One good debugging tool is to "telnet servername 2401". After connecting, send any text (for example "foo" followed by return). If CVSNT is working correctly, it will respond with

          cvs [authserver aborted]: bad auth protocol start: foo
          

If instead you get:

          Usage: cvs [cvs-options] command [command-options-and-arguments]
          ...
          

then you're missing the authserver command at the end of the line in inetd.conf; check to make sure that the entire command is on one line and that it's complete.

Likewise, if you get something like:

          Unknown command: `authserver'
          
          CVS commands are:
                  add          Add a new file/directory to the repository
          ...
          

then you've misspelled authserver in some way. If it isn't obvious, check for invisible control characters (particularly carriage returns) in inetd.conf.

If it fails to work at all, then make sure inetd is working right. Change the invocation in inetd.conf to run the echo program instead of cvs. For example:

          2401  stream  tcp  nowait  root /bin/echo echo hello
          

After making that change and instructing inetd to re-read its configuration file, "telnet servername 2401" should show you the text hello and then the server should close the connection. If this doesn't work, you need to fix it before you can worry about CVSNT problems.

On AIX systems, the system will often have its own program trying to use port 2401. This is AIX's problem in the sense that port 2401 is registered for use with CVSNT. I hear that there is an AIX patch available to address this problem.

Another good debugging tool is the -d (debugging) option to inetd. Consult your system documentation for more information.

If you seem to be connecting but get errors like:

          cvs server: cannot open /root/.cvsignore: Permission denied
          cvs [server aborted]: can't chdir(/root): Permission denied
          

then you probably haven't specified -f in inetd.conf.

If you can connect successfully for a while but then can't, you've probably hit inetd's rate limit. (If inetd receives too many requests for the same service in a short period of time, it assumes that something is wrong and temporarily disables the service.) Check your inetd documentation to find out how to adjust the rate limit (some versions of inetd have a single rate limit, others allow you to set the limit for each service separately.)


Node:Other problems, Previous:Connection, Up:Troubleshooting

Other common problems

Here is a list of problems which do not fit into the above categories. They are in no particular order.


Node:Credits, Next:, Previous:Troubleshooting, Up:Top

Credits

Roland Pesch, then of Cygnus Support <roland@wrs.com> wrote the manual pages which were distributed with CVS 1.3. Much of their text was copied into this manual. He also read an early draft of this manual and contributed many ideas and corrections.

The mailing-list info-cvs is sometimes informative. I have included information from postings made by the following persons: David G. Grubbs <dgg@think.com>.

Some text has been extracted from the man pages for RCS.

The CVSNT FAQ by David G. Grubbs has provided useful material. The FAQ is no longer maintained, however, and this manual is about the closest thing there is to a successor (with respect to documenting how to use CVSNT, at least).

In addition, the following persons have helped by telling me about mistakes I've made:

     Roxanne Brunskill <rbrunski@datap.ca>,
     Kathy Dyer <dyer@phoenix.ocf.llnl.gov>,
     Karl Pingle <pingle@acuson.com>,
     Thomas A Peterson <tap@src.honeywell.com>,
     Inge Wallin <ingwa@signum.se>,
     Dirk Koschuetzki <koschuet@fmi.uni-passau.de>
     and Michael Brown <brown@wi.extrel.com>.
     

The list of contributors here is not comprehensive; for a more complete list of who has contributed to this manual see the file doc/ChangeLog in the CVSNT source distribution.


Node:BUGS, Next:, Previous:Credits, Up:Top

Dealing with bugs in CVS or this manual

Neither CVSNT nor this manual is perfect, and they probably never will be. If you are having trouble using CVSNT, or think you have found a bug, there are a number of things you can do about it. Note that if the manual is unclear, that can be considered a bug in the manual, so these problems are often worth doing something about as well as problems with CVSNT itself.


Node:Index, Previous:BUGS, Up:Top

Index

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