- publishing free software manuals
Version Management with CVS - the CVS manual
by Per Cederqvist et al.
Paperback (6"x9"), 216 pages, 8 figures
ISBN 0954161718
RRP £19.95 ($29.95)

Get a printed copy>>>

17.7 Server requirements

The quick answer to what sort of machine is suitable as a server is that requirements are modest--a server with 32M of memory or even less can handle a fairly large source tree with a fair amount of activity.

The real answer, of course, is more complicated. Estimating the known areas of large memory consumption should be sufficient to estimate memory requirements. There are two such areas documented here; other memory consumption should be small by comparison (if you find that is not the case, let us know, as described in section K Dealing with bugs in CVS or this manual, so we can update this documentation).

The first area of big memory consumption is large checkouts, when using the CVS server. The server consists of two processes for each client that it is serving. Memory consumption on the child process should remain fairly small. Memory consumption on the parent process, particularly if the network connection to the client is slow, can be expected to grow to slightly more than the size of the sources in a single directory, or two megabytes, whichever is larger.

Multiplying the size of each CVS server by the number of servers which you expect to have active at one time should give an idea of memory requirements for the server. For the most part, the memory consumed by the parent process probably can be swap space rather than physical memory.

The second area of large memory consumption is diff, when checking in large files. This is required even for binary files. The rule of thumb is to allow about ten times the size of the largest file you will want to check in, although five times may be adequate. For example, if you want to check in a file which is 10 megabytes, you should have 100 megabytes of memory on the machine doing the checkin (the server machine for client/server, or the machine running CVS for non-client/server). This can be swap space rather than physical memory. Because the memory is only required briefly, there is no particular need to allow memory for more than one such checkin at a time.

Resource consumption for the client is even more modest--any machine with enough capacity to run the operating system in question should have little trouble.

To estimate disk space requirements, if you are importing RCS files from another system, the size of those files is the approximate initial size of your repository, or if you are starting without any version history, a rule of thumb is to allow for the server approximately three times the size of the code to be under CVS for the repository (you will eventually outgrow this, but not for a while). On the machines on which the developers will be working, you'll want disk space for approximately one working directory for each developer (either the entire tree or a portion of it, depending on what each developer uses).

ISBN 0954161718Version Management with CVS - the CVS manualSee the print edition