ClearCase and such like

David Gould <>
Sun Apr 16 03:49:55 CEST 2000


On Thu, Apr 13, 2000 at 11:08:53PM -0500, Hal Snyder wrote:
> Sean Hinde <> writes:
> 
> > I'm thinking of buying a clever build management tools such as
> > Rational ClearCase.
> > 
> > Does anyone have much experience of using these tools in an Erlang
> > development environment. i.e. nice integration with emacs, and
> > integration with the OTP directory structure, but also with some
> > powerful features like parallel builds and checkpoint builds etc?
> > 
> > Particularly I'd like to hear if anyone has had to do large
> > customisations of these tools to make them fit.
> > 
> > Thanks very much,
> > 
> > Sean
> 
> I remember reading that Ericsson uses ClearCase for in-house version
> control. I have worked at installations using ClearCase and others
> using DSEE (ancestor of ClearCase), CVS, etc. I'd rather flip burgers
> than deal with ClearCase on a daily basis again; to me it seemed a
> slow, bloated, overpriced resource hog and an administrative
> sinkhole.

Hear Hear!

I have used clearcase in large environments for the last several years. I
would never again take a job at a place that used clearcase. To understate
the issue completely, it sucks. Rational sell a very nice fantasy of easy
management, "just see the files you need" etc, but in real life, you end up
with fantastically complex configspec files, vob corruption, winkins that
mysteriously do or do not happen when you want, product builds that contain
phantom winkins from long dead versions, multisite replication
missynchronization.

I could live with all that, but it also means that the CM system is now also
the file server. Each file open, each block read or write, each stat involves
multiple user space processes on multiple nodes doing database queries and
as a result the performance is completely horrible. At my last job if you
changed a top level header file (in C) you were done for the day, just go
home. It would take over six hours to build again. Without clearcase, the same
product would build from the top in less than 40 minutes.

The impact is to change the development experience from brisk focused
joyful work to a leaden soggy slog, every day another day in Siberian labor
camp.

If you are interested, send me mail and I will try to go into detail
about how I really feel ;-)

(Oh yeah, have a look at Perforce (www.perforce.com). I have tried their demo
and it rocks. Looks like it might do most of what clearcase claims as far
as easy branching too).

Or learn how to use CVS, it can do this job.

-dg

-- 
David Gould                              510.536.1443 
- If simplicity worked, the world would be overrun with insects. -




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