This area is an archive and is no longer actively maintained. Information found on this page is likely to be extremely out of date and therefore highly inaccurate.


The PCL-CVS package interfaces the Emacs editor/environment to CVS.

Development of VC

VC and PCL-CVS are separate packages, both of which help you use CVS from within emacs. VC provides access to a more limited set of CVS features than PCL-CVS does. The version of VC distributed with XEmacs 20.3 and later is said to be significantly improved from the version in previous versions of Emacs.

If you want to turn off the colors in the output from C-x v g, put this in your .emacs (tested with GNU Emacs 20.2). Presumably it would be useful to make this settable with M-x customize in future versions of VC but this patch doesn't do that.

Light CVS

Yet another emacs interface is Light CVS. See the page from Pascal Molli.

Development of PCL-CVS

Regarding PCL-CVS on Windows, here is an unofficial patch and some suggestions from Michael Schmitz.

This unofficial and untested patch removes the feature of PCL-CVS 1.05 whereby it can semi-automatically send email to a bug-reporting address. The people at the receiving end of these reports have shown little interest in them, as far as I know. The XEmacs versions of CVS has a similar change.

There is a version of PCL-CVS available from the XEmacs folks. Despite the fact that we might call it "XEmacs PCL-CVS", as far as we know it will run on either XEmacs or GNU Emacs. See for downloadable versions or browse the development sources via CVSweb. People are working on keeping the XEmacs and versions in sync; they should be relatively similar.

Stefan Monnier has another PCL-CVS with new features. Stefan has since moved official development to the EMACS project.

Obsolete patches

Here is an unofficial patch to work around absolute pathname bugs in CVS 1.9.18 (or so) through 1.9.26. Upgrading to CVS 1.10 or later is probably a better solution.

Where to Get PCL-CVS:

For More Information:
  • The PCL-CVS package contains some documentation.

Mailing Lists and NewsGroups:
  • The newsgroup for CVS (and other version control systems) is The newsgroups for Emacs are comp.emacs.*. Either place would be a plausible place to discuss PCL-CVS.
  • There is a mailing list for PCL-CVS; to subscribe send a message whose body consists of "subscribe pcl-cvs" to; you will get an automated acknowledgement.

Return to The CVS Add-on List.

Derek Price, CVS developer and technical editor of Essential CVS (Essentials line from O'Reilly Press) , and others offer consulting services and training through Ximbiot.