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March, 2011:

TFS vs. SVN

We switched from SVN to TFS at work a little over a year ago, and it was for the better for the most part.  There are some things that annoy me, but that’s also true when comparing SVN to hg or git.

PROS

  • TFS is very fast compared to SVN.  No need to wait for svn status, as TFS is explicitly told the files checked out for edit.
  • TFS allows the checked out edits to be temporarily put aside, and then brought back.  This is similar to git stash – TFS calls them shelvesets.
  • TFS allows an individual developer to easily create private builds.  Point TFS at a shelveset, and wait for the build output to show up.
  • The API is very easy to use.  Creating custom tooling around TFS is dead-simple.
  • All-in-one solution (good and bad) for source control, bugs, and build.

CONS

  • The world is moving towards offline distributed development, and TFS is decidedly not.  Checking a file out for edit requires connectivity with the TFS server.
  • TFS requires a lot of horsepower to run.  Our configuration involves three machines: SQL Server, SharePoint, and the App Server.
  • The omnibox has won!  I’ll tell you what I want and you figure out how to parse and retrieve the data.  Do not force me to create a query to find a bug, it’s ridiculous.
  • [minor] There are some annoying parts of the UI, such as not being able to sort a table by a specific column. 

I am not really sure how to phrase when TFS is better than SVN or not.  It sounds trite to say for Enterprise because I do not believe that to be true.  How about, if you are on the MS platform, and you want an all-in-one solution TFS is a good answer.  VS integration, source control, and the build server all work in concert with one another very well.  The bug management support is complete, albeit baroque.

Multiple WLAN’s with DD-WRT

I made a failed attempt to replace DD-WRT with OpenWRT, but unfortunately the wireless NIC’s are not supported.  When I returned to DD-WRT I decided to update to the latest recommended 24 preSP2 Build 14896 (04/23/10), and add support for multiple wireless LAN’s.  One LAN is dedicated to the devices I do not control or trust (TiVo, Wii, etc.), and the other is dedicated to my machines.

I followed the instructions on the DD-WRT wiki, and it worked great!  Per the instructions I used the Command Method to configure dnsmasq.

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