Quick Guide to CS-RCS


Closed-source, Windows-based, easy-to-use SCM from Component Software. Uses the standard RCS file format. A one-user version is available for free (CS-RCS Basic), a multiple-user version is available for $ (CS-RCS Pro), both versions being able to access a local CVS repository; An add-on (CS-CVS) is available to connect to a remote CVS repository.

Is apparently based on NetBIOS, so don't expect usable performances over WAN links, in which case you should look into the CS-CVS add-on. Also, CS-RCS doesn't seem to allow concurrent editing, which will be a problem for bigger teams.



Run the EXE, select Master Setup, followed by Personal


A computer on the LAN has a shared drive to host the repository. From the host whose owner will act as CS-RCS administrator, run the install EXE, select Master Setup, followed by Workgroup, and give the destination path for the repository root, eg. \\Server\RCS or R:\RCS.

To install CS-RCS on other worstations, ie. regular users of CS-RCS, run the EXE, select Workstation Setup, and aim at the shared drive where the repository has been installed.

CS-RCS Basic/Pro

Just run the EXE. By default, CS-RCS installs its binaries under Drive:\Program Files\ComponentSoftware\CS-RCS\, and its repository under Drive:\RCS.



Adding file(s) or a folder to the repository

Two methods are available to add files to the repository:

  1. Windows Explorer, right-click on a file or set of files, and select "Add to RCS"
  2. CS' Document Explorer, and select File | Add Files(s) OR | Add Folder

To check a file out of the repository

Launch Windows Explorer, right-click on a file that you know has been added to the CS repository, and select "Check-out". In a Workstation setup, a file that is marked as Archived if it is currently available for check-out by any user. A is marked as "Locked" if it belongs to the user, ie. only this user can perform a check-out, and other users will see this file as "Blocked".

Note: The Check-out option is disabled if you installed the Personal, ie. single-user version of CS-RCS. This is because in this case, CS-RCS does not have to protect files from concurrent access. In this case, you can modify any file that is under source-control, and just choose Check-in when you're done, so that CS-RCS saves the changes in the repository. The Check-out option is available in the case where you modified a file, but haven't performed a Check-in : In this case, choosing Check-out is the way to tell CS-RCS to erase the changes you made but didn't save, by replacing the modified version with the previous version, as currently available in the repository

To check a file in the repository

Once you're through working with a file that lives in the repository, launch Windows explorer, right-click on the file, and select "Check-in".

To view changes made to a file

This is used to compare two versions of a file in the repository, by default the latest version with its immediate previous version: Right-click on the file in Windows Explorer, and select "Revision History"

To check whether a file has changed

To create a project

Organizing files into projects is not required by CS-RCS, but makes things easier if you more than a few files in the repository.

Removing files from the repository

Launch Document Explorer, select the files, right-click, and select Delete. You will need to perform this task twice (as a security measure, I assume.)



What is the difference between CS Document Explorer and CS Administrator?

What is the difference between a single-user install and a workgroup install?

How to I configure CS-RCS to use an alternative file compare program?

I'd rather use FileCompare32 or BeyondCompare.

CSDiff 3.0 is slow on bigger files

You can download release 2.5 which has less features but handles bigger files better. Warning: I didn't succeed in overwriting CSDiff 3.0 with 2.5 because CS-RCS was using RCS_CMN.DLL; Ignoring this error caused other problems (ie. selecting Revision History triggered an error.)