Software Development with Linux

CVS clients reviews SmartCVS

SAT, 01 AUG 2009

For this next installment in my Linux CVS clients reviews series, I'll cover SmartCVS Foundation 7.0.9, by SyntEvo.
"SmartCVS is an innovative CVS client which runs on Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. It has powerful features, like built-in File Compare/Merge, Transaction display or List Repository Files, and still is easy and intuitive to use. SmartCVS focuses on your day-to-day tasks and usability and is not limited to the available CVS command set." -- SmartCVS's web site
As you may have already guessed, SmartCVS isn't an open source software, but the Foundation license is free and allow personal use.

First, SmartCVS doesn't support local connection, you must connect to a real CVS server. So, I've used an anonymous access to RedBoot's CVS repository. This means that I couldn't do any modifications, but I could test everything else.

I found SmartCVS easy to use. Every thing contain simple options and choices, so you don't really have to know how CVS work to be able to use it. When you checkout a new project, you are presented with a list of available modules. You don't have to manually type the CVS root; it get constructed from the options you choose.

It was also fast an responsive. Even for the change log of a file with 274 revisions, it took less than 5 seconds to have it displayed.

Comparing two revisions was also easy, thanks to the included compare tool.

The only problem I found is that there's no embedded text editor, and no way to link an external one. This is unfortunate since this is something I really like to have in any graphical version control tool.

Other then that, I think SmartCVS offer a great Linux CVS client with many features. You should give it a try.