Updated March 6, 2023
Difference Between SVN vs CVS
SVN vs CVS are both version control files. They are mostly used by teams that are collaborating on a single project.SVN stands for SubVersioN, and CVS stands for Concurrent Versions System. They allow the team members to keep track of all changes made and know who is developing what. SVN is different from CVS as it allows atomic commits. Atomic commit allows the user to either apply a commit either fully or not at all. Using SVN, a commit can be easily rolled back, while in CVS, it is not possible to undo a partial commit. Let us have a look at the differences below.
Head to Head Comparison Between SVN and CVS (Infographics)
Below is the top 8 difference between SVN and CVS :
Key Differences between SVN and CVS
Both SVN vs CVS are versioning tools and help developers maintain the code and status of a project and work concurrently. Let us discuss the major differences between SVN and CVS:
In SVN vs CVS repository is the central place where all developers store their work. The repository not only stores files, but it also stores history about all changes. In CVS, a file can easily be added to the repository by using the command ‘cvs add myfile.c’. Similarly, a directory can also be added by using the add command. On the other hand, in SVN, there are operations like check-in and check out. Checkout is used to create a working copy of the code in the repository. This working copy is nothing but a workplace where developers do their changes and later submit it in the repository. One can also update, perform different changes, fix any mistakes, resolve conflicts if present, and commit the code in the repository.
When it comes to conflicts, SVN provides the facilities for viewing these conflicts. Once this is done, a user can postpone the conflict if it is not urgent. The resolve conflict option enables the user to resolve all conflicts whenever required. The process is a bit lengthier in CVS. In order to do this quickly, it is advised that the user scans the entire file so that you can resolve all conflicts in one go. CVS does not allow committing until all conflicts are resolved.
SVN and CVS Comparison Table
Let’s look at the top Comparison between SVN and CVS.
|Basis of Comparison between SVN vs CVS
|CVS is a client-server system that helps developers to store their work and projects at a centralized location. Using this tool, a developer can make changes to the contents that are present in the repository. The repository tracks every change made to the file and creates a complete history of the entire project.
|Apache Subversion is abbreviated as SVN. CollabNet Inc created it in 2000. Later it was taken by Apache Software Foundation. It allows users to work simultaneously so and helps so that users do not overwrite each other’s changes. This Version Control System has a repository, trunk, tags, branches, etc.
|CVS uses the RCS files of version control. Each file that is connected to CVS is an ordinary file that has some piece of information. It may happen that the hierarchy or tree of these files will repeat in the local directory. Hence when using CVS, the user may always be concerned about data loss. The RCS files can be easily corrected whenever necessary.
|SVN is based on a relational database, or it is a set of binary files. It removes many CVS problems, like concurrent access through file share and enables new functionalities like transactions at operations performance. But this repository does not have data storage transparent and is not available for user interference. Hence it has utilities for curing and recovering.
|CVS enables the user to store only files and nothing else.
|SVN enables the user to attach to a file any number of all possible named attributes. It has this excellent functionality.
|CVS is slow when compared with SVN.
|When it comes to SVN, it is much faster than CVS. It transmits less information through the network and supports operations in offline mode. The increase in speed is achieved due to all work files are completely backed up on your computer.
|Tags and branches
|The tags and branches are quite systematic and well managed in CVS.
|SVN has got rid of 3 measurements by working with tags and branches. This means that they have substituted the concepts of copying all files and directories in the repository and by saving the history of changes as well. The branches are nothing but separate folders that are created in the repository. There is no tag function in SVN. This is compensated by using the universal numbering of files in SVN.
|CVS was initially supporting text data storage. Due to this, storage of other files like binary and Unicode files is not easy and needs special information and adjustments on either the server or client-side.
|SVN is built up to be smart enough. It can change and manipulate all types of files, and SVN does not require any special instructions from the user.
|CVS helps to rollback any commit that has taken place in the repository. This takes some time as each file should be processed individually.
|SVN does not allow rollback of any code that is committed. It is suggested that to maintain a good repository state, overwrite is avoided. However, that commit will stay in the repository.
|CVS is considered to be an old system. It has a bunch of scripts that are written in RCS and later packaged into a single executable.
|SVN has a good internal architecture, and the code that is saved here is expandable. In addition to this, there are many future improvements that are lined up to be coming.
Both SVN vs CVS are versioning tools and help in maintaining the codes for a project efficiently. But when it comes to choosing the better one, it is always advisable to go with SVN. The reason being SVN is newer and has more advanced options. It allows atomic commits, while CVS does not have this feature. SVN has the feature of renaming and moving files and directories, while CVS does not. As a result, it can be concluded that SVN is a better option to choose from.
This has been a guide to the top difference between SVN vs CVS. We have discussed SVN vs CVS head to head comparison, key difference, and infographics and comparison table. You may also have a look at the following articles to learn more –