Will it get here in time?

04. August 2011 Uncategorized 0

I’m certain that about this time, I bunch of people are asking “but, did you implement DVCS”.  The answer is no, not yet.  You still can’t checkin while you are offline.  And you can’t do history or branch merges, etc.  Certain operations do still require you to be online.  You won’t get big long hangs – but rather nice error messages that tell you you need to be online.  DVCS is definitely in our future and this is a step in that direction but there’s another step yet to take.  http://blogs.msdn.com/b/bharry/archive/2011/08/02/version-control-model-enhancements-in-tfs-11.aspx

This blog post on TFS11 enhancements came to my attention from the Los Techies blog.  Their post seemed to be a bit more optimistic than me.  

The short-and-sweet version is that while they’ve made some improvements, TFS11 will still be a centralized version control system.

From the quote above, they’re moving towards DVCS, and “it’s definitely in our future.”  However, up to this point, TFS has been releasing on a 2-3 year timeline (2005, 2008, 2010.)  The next version of Visual Studio and TFS is tentatively set to release next year.  If this pattern keeps up then the earliest you could see a DVCS for TFS would be 2014, three years from now.

I have to wonder if at that point, TFS-DVCS will even be relevant.  There are already a plethora of good DVCS systems (Git and Mercurial being the two most popular.) And new ones are still being released. 

Personally, I have my doubts that TFS-DVCS will solve any real problems. It most likely will release with less features than existing systems (By the time TFS-DVCS is released, Git and Mercurial will both be 9 years old.)  But I guess it does offer hope for employees of companies who won’t use something not made by Microsoft – if you can hold on for another 3 years.