[development] : FAQ: Why is Drupal still using CVS when X is a much better choice?

Sheldon Rampton sheldon at prwatch.org
Wed Aug 6 13:54:52 UTC 2008

I've followed a bit of this discussion and just thought I'd throw in  
my two cents.

Personally, I think SVN is easier to learn and use than CVS. I've had  
trouble using CVS to maintain my contrib modules on Drupal.org.  
Probably the worst example occurred when I tried using an applications  
(recommended in the documentation at drupal.org) that was supposed to  
provide a graphical user interface for CVS on my Mac. In practice, it  
just added one more layer of abstraction between me and the actions I  
was trying to take. I ended up calling some command from the  
application menu that I though would commit a change to one of my  
files. Instead it iterated through my entire downloaded collection of  
nearly a hundred Drupal modules, committing changes to all of them  
(including modules that other people had written). Someone else must  
have cleaned up the mess that left behind, because I didn't know how to.

Having said all this, I also recognize that there is value to  
constancy in purpose, and the Drupal repository has a long history of  
being maintained under CVS, which I think would make it rather  
difficult to change over to something else at this point. Rather than  
switching from CVS to something else, it might be better to work on  
improving the documentation, which right now seems rather scattered  
and hard to follow. (It looks like it was written by committee, which  
of course it was.) If someone could come up with the money, I think it  
would be a good idea to hire a skilled technical writer who can go  
through the Drupal documentation systematically with an eye to making  
it more user-friendly.


Research director, Center for Media & Democracy
Center for Media & Democracy
520 University Avenue, Suite 227
Madison, WI 53703
phone: 608-260-9713

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