View on
MetaCPAN is shutting down
For details read Perl NOC. After June 25th this page will redirect to
Ingy döt Net > VCS-SaVeS-0.12 > svs


Annotate this POD

View/Report Bugs


svs - The SaVeS(tm) (Standalone Versioning System) command line interface tool.


    svs [svs-options] command [command-options] [command-arguments]

    saves  # DWIM shorthand. Does 'svs import' or 'svs save'.


SaVeS is the Standalone Versioning System. It works like CVS but is simpler to use. The main interface is the command line tool svs. This manpage describes all of the information needed to use SaVeS.


All revision information for a given directory tree is stored in a .saves directory at the root of that tree. This directory is known as a SaVeS repository. All SaVeS commands must be issued from the directory containing the repository.

A repository is responsible for the entire tree below it. However, if any directory below the root, contains a .saves directory itself, then that directory is not processed by the commands issued above it.

A directory with a .saves repository might have the following layout:


The MANIFEST contains a list of every file in the repository. It doesn't contain any pathnames of directories. The MANIFEST of the above directory might look like this:


The SAVES subdirectory contains the revision files inside a directory structure that mirrors the current directory.



Get help about the SaVeS system or a given svs command.


Start a repository in the current directory.


Save the current state of files in the repository.


Show the revision history of a given file.


Restore an older revision of files in the repository.


--stdin (-)

--version (-v)

--help (-h or -?)



Add a list of files to the MANIFEST. Also save an initial revision for every file that has never been saved.

    svs add [-mmessage -M] [file-list]



    # Add all files in current directory
    svs add .
    # Add the files foo.txt and everything in the lib/fun/ directory
    svs add foo.txt lib/fun 

archive XXX

Create a tar archive of a repository. This can be used to transport the repository to another system where it can be unarchived with the import command.


This creates an empty SaVeS repository in the current directory. Doing this serves to keep svs commands used at higher directories from traversing the into this directory.

    svs break

NOTE: The empty repository consists of a single file: .saves/MANIFEST. This repository can be made active, simply by using the svs add command.

config XXX

This command is used to show and set the various SaVeS configuration options.


Remove files from the repository. This does not actually remove the actual files. It merely erases the revision history.

    svs delete [-f] file-list

NOTE: SaVeS commands will never delete your working files. So don't worry about that.


Show the difference between files at different revision levels.

    svs diff [-r<rev1> [-r<rev2>]] file-list

If you use the -r flags then you may only specify one filename.

export XXX

Convert a repository into a form that can be imported into another VCS, like CVS.


Find all the files in the repository that match a given regular expression pattern.


Get help about the SaVeS system in general, or help on a specific svs command.


Show the revision history for individual files in the repository. You usually use this command before an svs restore command, in order to identify the revision number you wish to get. If the working file is newer than the last save, the message on the first line will be prefixed with a *.

    svs history file-name

Sample Output:

    1) 2002-10-25 14:41:17-07 (Origin) saves 
    2) 2002-10-25 14:45:52-07 ( +2 -4) saves 
    3) 2002-10-29 17:31:30-08 (+58 -35) Changed die to DIE
    4) 2002-10-29 20:29:10-08 (+11 -5) saves 
    5) 2002-10-29 20:59:03-08 ( +3 -2) Added asterisk before message
    *) Working file has been modified since last save


This command creates a new SaVeS repository in the current directory. It can take a list of files and directories under the current directory. These get added to the MANIFEST, and will be the only files to be affected by further commands, unless the MANIFEST is modified by other svs commands.

    svs import [-mmessage -M] [file-list]


log XXX

Display a log of previous svs commands performed on the current directory.


This command is use to either list or set the contents of the current .saves/MANIFEST file. The MANIFEST controls which files in the tree are affected by the SaVeS system.

The manifest command can be used in a pipeline unix command to list, modify and reset the MANIFEST:

    svs manifest | grep -v CVS | svs --stdin manifest

merge XXX

The inverse of split. This command will take a repository from a subdirectoryand integrate it into the repository in the current directory.

message XXX

Change the message for a certain revision of a file.


    svs remove file-list

Remove files from the MANIFEST. This does not delete files from the repository. See delete for that.

NOTE: SaVeS commands will never delete your working files. So don't worry about that.


Restore a single file in the repository to a given revision. If no revision number is given, restore to last save.

    svs restore [-r<rev>] [file-list]



    # Show a list of revisions for 'foo.txt'
    svs history foo.txt
        # Restore revision number 3 in the history list
        svs restore -r3 foo.txt
        # Restore the last saved revision
        svs restore foo.txt

    =head2 save

    This command saves files which have been modified since the last C<svs
    save> or C<svs import> command.

        svs save [-mmessage -M] [file-list]


    =over 4 

    =item * -m'A message'

    Specify a message in the command line.

    =item * -M

    Don't prompt for a message. Use the default message.


    =head2 split XXX

    This command takes a subdirectory of the current repository and makes it
    a repository of its own.

    =head2 status

    This command will print a report detailing the status of each requested
    file that is in the repository. The information displayed contains the
    name of the file, the current number of revisions and the date of last
    save. If the working file is newer than the last save, it's name will be
    prefixed with a C<*>.

        svs status [file-list]

    Sample output:

        2002-10-29 20:55:31-08 (2)
        2002-10-25 14:50:34-07 (2)*ToDo
        2002-10-25 14:41:17-07 (1) bin/saves.PL
        2002-10-25 14:41:17-07 (1)*bin/svs.PL
        2002-10-25 14:41:17-07 (1) lib/VCS/SaVeS/
        2002-10-25 14:41:17-07 (1)*lib/VCS/SaVeS/
        2002-10-29 20:59:03-08 (5)*lib/VCS/SaVeS/

    =head2 tag XXX

    Associate a symbolic name with a set of files.

    =head2 undo XXX

    Undo the last C<svs> command. This can be applied as many times as needed.


Simply backup the files in a directory.


The saves command is the simplest way to backup a directory tree. If the repository doesn't exist, saves is the same as saying:

    svs import -m'saves' .

If the repository already exists, then saves is the same as:

    svs save -m'saves' .

If saves is called with any options or arguments, these are passed on to the <svs import> or <svs save> command that is actually invoked.

Whenever you feel like backing everything up, just say 'saves'. You don't even need to think about it.

Restore a file to a certain revision.

    svs restore [-r<rev>] file-name

Without any arguments, this command simply sets things back to the way they were when you last saved.


The SaVeS system is written in Perl. It is a wrapper around the standard Unix toolset RCS (Revision Control System). It is distributed as a Perl module called VCS::SaVeS on the CPAN (Comprehesive Perl Archive Network). It installs the Perl scripts svs and <saves> as command line programs. It also installs some Perl modules, but you probably won't use those directly.


The saves manpage.


Copyright (c) 2002 Brian Ingerson. All rights reserved.

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.

syntax highlighting: