Roadmap for SourceSafe and Beyond

Today, I am honored to share an
announcement about the future of Visual SourceSafe.  If you haven’t already
surmised by the content of this blog, improving the VSS  class=877501200-31072003>user experience (the documentation in
 is my most recent project.*

In the world of software development, the following announcement was
probably barely audible, if at all.  But for VSS, the href="">Roadmap is
HUGE!  The href="">Roadmap is
100 decibels of source-controlled joy class=877501200-31072003>. Finally!
The SourceSafe feature team is  class=877501200-31072003>planning to do more than fix bugs.  class=877501200-31072003>As many customers have observed recently, the
last few VSS releases have seemed
like a reverse alphabetical countdown to something: 6.0, 6.0a, 6.0b,
6.0c, 6.0d.  href="">Whidbey  class=877501200-31072003>will be different…

Excerpt from the href="">Whidbey

Configuration Management
Software Configuration
Management (SCM) is a disciplined approach to managing and controlling the
evolution of software development and maintenance practices as they change over
time. With SCM, enterprise developers can make safe alterations to existing
code, track changes across developers, projects, and time, manage the build
process effectively, and track project defects and issues. By providing
project-oriented software management, Microsoft Visual SourceSafe delivers
integrated SCM support for developers using Visual Studio.

In Whidbey, Microsoft will improve upon the Visual SourceSafe
tools and offer programmers working in small teams the technology they need to
manage source code as well as other files in their solution. Visual
SourceSafe will be extended to offer support for Web service and Unicode
, helping programmers more effectively meet the challenges
of today’s business. Further, programmers will enjoy improved
performance and tighter integration between Visual SourceSafe and the Visual
Studio IDE.”

In addition to the improvements highlighted above, I would add two

  1. A big HELP viewer upgrade (the same as Visual Studio
  2. A greatly improved HELP experience,
    which is
    a personal pledge from me.

Stay tuned for more SourceSafe news and–if
you haven’t done so in awhile–run Analyze on your favorite VSS

* What can I say?  I’m a romantic technical writer with a weakness
for old battlehorses.

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Haftung übernehmen.
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de ninguna clase, y no otorga ningún

Comments (14)

  1. Don McNamara says:

    Hrmpf. Adding support for unicode and web services is certainly needed. Unfortunately, the team I’m working on was hoping for something a little more powerful in the next version of SS — more feature parity with CVS. This just confirms my belief that our project has out grown SS and now is a good time to move on.

  2. Ryan Gregg says:

    I’m disappointed to see nothing about better support for using VSS in diverse community environments via the Internet. Nothing is worse than trying to use VSS via a VPN link back to a company you’re working for. How about a server-based version of VSS (yes, I know all about SourceOffSite and other similar products) that would support Internet clients!

  3. Sam Gentile says:

    I am extremely happy that VSS will finally see some new development. That being said, the great majority of .NET developers do not work on Web Services and thus both new features listed are not very useful to me. I echo what the two previous persons said as well as wondering when Microsoft will provide a full CMS t(along the lines of Rational’s ClearCase or Perforce) to overcome the many issues that we have in using VSS on group projects of any appreciable size. I appreciate your blog and work and if you would like any input, I would be glad to provide some.

  4. Phil says:

    Good to know Korby. As my emails have pointed out, performance over slow network connections is my number one issue with VSS. These issues are addressed in the SourceGear product, so I would think that the VSS team would rank improving performance as the first item to fix in the next release.

  5. Really, if you where to do a complete rewrite of VSS for use in a peer-to-peer, server-based and/or web-based environment, using WSE for all security aspects and implement a facade using Webservices, and maybe store everything in a SQL database… but wait, why bother … Go get SourceVault.

  6. Good to know there is movement on this product, Korby (and nice to hear from someone on that team). As a VSS user for many years, I agree that unicode and web services support is needed; however, I think that many users would suggest tackling ‘higher priority’ items. Here are things that I would like to see: Better network (i.e. Internet / VPN) performance; current performance here borders on dismal. I would also like to see this product as a true server product (maybe using SQL Server on the back end) with Web Services and Remoting interfaces.

    I would also like to thank you for blogging, giving us some insight into this product.


  7. Mladen Mihajlovic says:

    Also, I know this sounds stupid, but I think it really needs a "visual" upgrade. Those blue folders and old style icons are really starting to look crappy 😉

  8. Korby says:

    One of the most frustrating aspects of my job is that I can’t share all the cool things we’re working on inside the fortress walls with my friends and family on the ouside. No, we’re not the CIA and it’s not a life or death matter. But imagine a world in which every Microsoft employee routinely spouted off about some feature or another without half of them ever getting shipped. That would be bad!

    Lately, Eric Rudder has been stressing the importance of transparency in our product planning so that developers like yourselves can have more information than you’ve had in the past and hopefully, create your own development strategies more effectively. I’m certain that the Roadmap to Whidbey is Eric’s doing. Internally, I have been a vocal supporter of this Roadmap and the cultural shift it represents. Nonetheless, I still can’t tell you everything about the next version of VSS. What I can say is that VSS is not a dead end product by any means and that the Whidbey Roadmap is not all-inclusive, especially in the source control space. The VSS team is firing on all cylinders and is anxious to deliver a great source control experience to our valued customers. Until we do, keep those comments coming! We’re always listening, especially to comments like, "do a complete rewrite of VSS for use in a peer-to-peer, server-based and/or web-based environment, using WSE for all security aspects and implement a facade using Webservices, and maybe store everything in a SQL database.":-) btw, Yves, is your real name James? Using WSE-security is a wonderful idea… for any Web app.

  9. Why not intergrate the Gotdotnet workspaces technology with Visual Source safe ? Also after all the discussion about version contol management and stored procedures why not add a simple way of doing this out of the box.

    By the way I have learnt a lot through reading you blog.

  10. chris antos says:

    Why not put the long-deserved bullet in SourceSafe’s head and share Source Depot with the world?

  11. Mav says:

    When will all of this explode onto the shelves or maybe into Beta testing hands. I am very keen to see this and beta it. When .. when …. when ?

  12. tomas HOISE says:

    for business relationship.