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Difference between Concurrent Versions System (CVS) and Subversion (SVN)

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1. Concurrent Versions System (CVS) : Concurrent versions System is functional version control system which is developed by Dick Grune as series of shell scripts. This helps the teams to be connected to the changes that are measured into repository when working on software. This tool was used as the version control system for long for time. It is reliable software tool but with new challenges other alternatives made it used as limited. Following are some features of CVS :
  • It is one of the reliable Version Control System
  • It does not allows commit with errors to made.
  • Scripts are written in RCS.
  • User can only store files into repository.
Advantages :
  • CVS is one of the reliable version control software.
  • Changes are committed with full change.
Disadvantages :
  • CVS changes are time consuming.
  • CVS do not commit if there is error into the commit.

2. Subversion (SVN) : Subversion is an open-source highly functional version control system which is developed by CollabNet Inc and then later was taken by Apache Software Foundation. This system has a centralized control by a server. This server is responsible for the storage of repository, and through the server, this repository is then distributed into three areas called Branch, Area, and Truck. This makes the SVN to be different. Following are some features of SVN :
  • It binds with a diverse number of programming languages.
  • When multiple people access the same file it is locked called File Locking.
  • Directives and editing are versioned.
  • Binary files are handled with care.
Advantages :
  • SVN is highly configurable.
  • Latest changes are committed and observed only.
Disadvantages :
  • SVN central repository makes commit changes time consuming.
  • It is difficult to learn SVN for the first timers.

Difference between CVS and SVN :
Parameter CVS SVN
Developed by CVS was developed by Dick Grune. SVN was developed by CollabNet Inc.
Open source It is open source and released with GNU General Public License. It is open source and released with Apache License.
Repository format CVS uses RFC format to store repository. SVN uses binary format to store repository
Tags Management CVS has a systematic mechanism of maintaining tags and branches. SVN uses branch, area and trunk to manage repository and there is no tag feature.
Speed CVS is slow as compared to SVN. SVN is fast due to all the files are completed backed up onto computer.
File types CVS initially requires the data to be text and asks user for the datatype. SVN is smart and can easily see the changes and publish that.

Last Updated : 11 Aug, 2020
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