Installing WinCVS (CVSNT - Release 2.0.14)

by Jeff Hunter, Sr. Database Administrator


  1. Overview
  2. Downloading CVSNT
  3. Installing the CVSNT Software
  4. Post Installation Steps
CVS is the Concurrent Versions System, the dominant open-source network-transparent version control system. CVS is useful for everyone from individual developers to large, distributed teams:

This articles provides an overview of the steps required to install and configure CVSNT, version 2.0.14.

Downloading CVSNT
You can download the Windows version of CVS, named CVSNT, from the following site:
    Windows version of the CVS:
Here are several other CVS website that you may find useful:
    CVS Domain Home Page:
    GUI front-end for CVS:
    Java client:      
Installing the CVSNT Software
IMPORTANT: Use a local disk! CVSNT does not work properly unless the repository files are located on a disk on the local PC. Don't try to use a network drive or a mapped disk (not even a mapped disk aimed at the local PC)! It will not work and there are numerous reasons, here is one

CVSNT runs as a service and thus acts as the SYSTEM user account. This account has no permissions on the network and so cannot access the files if they are on a remote server. In fact if the files are on the same PC does not help either if they are accessed using the network via an UNC path. The dive is still considered to be on the network where SYSTEM cannot operate. So don't even try to create such a configuration!

Before starting the CVSNT installation, create two directories on the target machine:


NOTE: The important point here is that the disk where the repository is located on is NTFS. Where CVSNT itself is installed in not important, it can be on FAT32 or NTFS or whatever. In this document I assume that C: has been used.

NOTE: The cvstemp directory must NOT be located in either c:\WINNT\Temp or anywhere in the "C:\Documents and Settings" tree because these locations have imposed restrictions on user access in Win2000 and Win-XP!

Now run the downloaded CVSNT setup file. For the purpose of this example, I will choose to install CVSNT to the path c:\cvsnt

The following is a set of screen shots along with detailed information on how to install the CVSNT software product.

Welcome Screen

License Agreement

Install Directory Selection

As stated in the introduction, I will be installing CVSNT to c:\cvsnt. I generally try to avoid directory names with spaces.

Anti-virus Software Warning

You version of CVSNT may prompt you with another screen indicating that Anti-virus software can cause corruption in your repository. There will be a checkbox that you have to select saying that I understand before you can continue the installation.

Installation Component Selection Screen

When installing CVSNT, all of the components may not be required to install it as a server. Make sure to check all components in this screen (as shown below).

Shortcut Folder Selection

Task Selection Screen

On some versions of CVSNT, some of the tasks may not be selected. Make sure that all tasks are selected (as shown in the above screen).

Ready to Install Screen

Installation Progress Screen

Installation is Complete!

Post Installation Steps
  1. Note that there are times where the installer may complain that it was not table to set the PATH environment variable at the end of the installation. If this happens, you can simply open the Control Panel and double-click the System icon. Go to the Environment tab (for Windows 2000) or the Advanced tab (for Windows XP). From there you will need to set the System variable path to include c:\cvsnt; to the begining of the PATH variable and save it (Apply).

    Location of this setting page varies between NT4, Windows 2000, and XP. You may have to search around a bit.

  2. Ensure that the CVSNT Control Panel Configuration applet was installed. To do this, open your Control Panel and look for the CVSNT applet (the green fish).

    If you have problems locating the CVSNT Control Panel applet, it might be because one or several of a few system .DLL's are missing. These libraries were suppose to be installed by the CVSNT installer, but sometimes this step fails. The files you will need can be extracted from the binary download of CVSNT. These are the files that you might find missing:

    • mfc70.dll - (needs registration)
    • mfc70u.dll - (needs registration)
    • msvcp70.dll
    • msvcr70.dll

    Once you have located the files, copy them to the %WINDOWS%\system32 folder.

Last modified on: Saturday, 18-Sep-2010 18:16:04 EDT
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