Review: Visual SourceSafe 2005 Software Configuration Management in Practice
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by Steven Swafford
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About the book

This book is broken down into seven easy to read content which provides real world examples for both the beginner and intermediate VSS administrators and users.

Chapter 1: Controlling the Evolution of Software Products

Chapter 2: The SourceSafe 2005 Architecture

Chapter 3: Creating a Service-Oriented Application

Chapter 4: Adding Solutions to the SourceSafe Database

Chapter 5: Developing Solutions under Source Control

Chapter 6: Working from Remote Locations

Chapter 7: Managing the Software Development Lifecycle

If you are a visual (hands-on) person such as myself, each topic the author discusses includes a number of screenshots that allow you to walk through the process of configuration management from start to finish.

The author has accurately addressed the configuration management process in chapter one. This chapter is the foundation of Visual SourceSafe administrators alike. This chapter walks you through establishing connections to Visual SourceSafe, adding project files, viewing file and project versions and histories and much more. Once you have completed this chapter you will be armed with the knowledge of how to work efficiently with a Visual SourceSafe database.

A key feature of Visual SourceSafe 2005 is the ease of working with Visual Studio 2005. Chapter five is very detailed on this topic and really leaves no stone unturned. One key issue that I have seen over the years is the merge function. This can easily get some developers into trouble if they are not familiar with this process. The author once again is dead on and even provides a few very useful tips that we all should commit to memory.

The core content of the book in my opinion resides in chapter seven. As we all know, when a software product begins development the process cycle more often than not progresses into new versions of the product. The key points that all Visual SorceSafe administrators should be aware of and understand are:

Milestones

Builds

Testing

Releasing

Parallel Product development

In my experience milestones and parallel product development can become confusing and present a variety of risk if you are not familiar with these topics. However, chapter seven is a must read (even two or three times) if that is what it takes to understand its content.


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