The CVS manual is rather fat and daunting. It is worthwhile using CVS though, and to understand it you’ll at least want to skim read the introductory parts. Then create a repository and start a new project as below. You can learn the rest as and when you need it.
These “To-The-Point Instructions for Using CVS” by Bradley C. Kuszmaul might be useful.
Create a personal repository
cvs -d $HOME/cvsrep init
Then put a line in your shell’s rc file:
sh-like shells: export CVSROOT=$HOME/cvsrep
csh-like shells: setenv CVSROOT=$HOME/cvsrep
and restart your shell.
Starting a new project
It is easiest if you create a directory structure (contained within progdir, say) first. Then import it into the tree:
cd progdir cvs import yourname/progname yourname start
You should replace progdir, yourname and progname to match your code’s location, your name and the name of your project.
You should then move progdir to a backup folder and never use it again. To get a copy of the program that you can work on from the repository, do:
cvs checkout yourname/progname
and then every so often tell the repository about your changes:
in the directory containing your project. When you create new files you’ll need to “cvs add” them. Don’t add files that can be exactly reproduced from other source files.
Define a module
This allows you to refer to progname rather than yourname/progname.
cvs checkout CVSROOT/modules cd CVSROOT echo 'progname yourname/progname' >> modules cvs commit modules cd .. cvs release -d CVSROOT