Coyote's Guide to IDL Programming

Setting Up Source Code Management in IDL 7

QUESTION: I know you have written detailed instructions for setting up a Subversion source control system in IDL 7, but do you have general instructions for doing so with any version control plug-in?

ANSWER: Chris Torrence of ITTVIS gave a fairly complete explanation of how to do this on the IDL Newsgroup. I have reproduced most of it here, with light editing for added clarity.

The instructions assume you have installed the appropriate plug-in. To install a plug-in, follow these steps:

  1. Open the IDL Workbench, and find the Help->Software Updates menu selection.
  2. Select the Search for new features to install selection button, and click Next.
  3. What you do next depends upon which plug-in you wish to install. If you wish to install the CVS plug-in, follow these directions:
    • Make sure the ITT Visual Information Solutions site is checked, and click Finish.
    • On the next display, expand the ITT Visual Information Solutions item until you see the Eclipse CVS Client selection. (It will be under Workbench Updates.)Check the Eclipse CVS Client option, then click Next.
    • Accept the license agreement, and click Next.
    • Your plug-in is ready to install. Click Finish to install it.

    If you are installing Subversion or Perforce, you have to give the URL of the plug-in location. Instead of choosing the ITT Visual Information Solutions site, as above, click the New Remote Site button. In the pop-up dialog, enter the name of the plug-in (i.e., Subversion or Perforce) and a URL for the remote site. For Subversion, you will use the Subclipse plug-in and the site URL will be For Perforce, the site URL will be The rest of the instructions are similar to the CVS instructions above.

  4. After installation, be sure you restart the IDL Workbench.

General Instructions for Source Code Management

The following is from Chris Torrence of ITTVIS.

Just thought it would be useful to post a quick summary of how I'm using a source code management (SCM) system like Perforce, Subversion or CVS, from within the IDL Workbench.

  1. Install your favorite SCM plugin feature. I'll use Perforce as an example.
  2. Start with a clean IDL Workspace. Do not create any projects.
  3. Change perspectives to the Perforce Perspective (or whatever yours is).
  4. Set up your connection to your server. Make sure you can see the files and folders within your depot/repository/.
  5. Navigate to the folder that contains the IDL code that you want to work on. This folder can contain subfolders, doesn't matter. You need to decide on how best to split up your repository into IDL Projects.
  6. Right click on the desired folder within the depot/repository view, choose Team->Import as Project. (This menu item may be slightly different depending on your SCM.)

At this point, the IDL Workbench will import that folder into your Workspace as a new Project. Because it contains IDL code, it will automatically recognize it as an IDL Project. Note that the files are not copied. They still live over in your "sandbox," wherever that happens to be on your system. You don't care.

Some tips on how to use your SCM plugin. This assumes that the IDL Project has been imported using the above steps.

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