June 15, 2009

Migrating Surround SCM working directories across VMs

Surround SCM
It’s well known that Surround SCM is a pretty flexible and forgiving source control tool from a developer’s perspective. What is less well known is how flexible and forgiving it is for administrators. The technical publications team here uses MadCap Flare to produce our user guides and help files. We also use Surround SCM for versioning and managing the doc review process. Since Flare is Windows-only and I'm a on a Mac, I frequently run it in VMware Fusion. I recently had a Windows/Office/VMware issue and one of our IT guys disappeared with my laptop for awhile. Long story short, he had to set up a new VM to fix the Office issue. After I reinstalled all my Windows programs and got back to work, I realized that I had checked out an entire project from Surround SCM to a working directory on my old VM. And I had made changes to quite a few of those files. While I know you're not supposed to delete/move or otherwise mess with the .MySCMServerInfo file, I decided to try an experiment. I copied the directory from my old VM (backups are a good thing) to the new VM. Stopped and restarted Surround SCM. And, voila, Surround SCM recognized the files. The check out directory also magically switched to my new VM/working directory. While I'm not suggesting this is something you should try frequently, it certainly worked for me and my situation.