Solving VSS Slowness and Performance Issues

Client-Server Architecture with Caching

SourceAnywhere for VSS - the fastest VSS internet access tool recommended by Microsoft - utilizes client/server architecture with caching to solve the VSS slow over internet issue. It consists of a Server, Cache Server (optional) and several types of Client. They communicate over any standard TCP/IP connection, including a PPP connection over a modem, an ISDN line, or an Ethernet connection on the same LAN as the Server. SourceAnywhere for VSS does not require Windows Remote Access Service (RAS).



SourceAnywhere architecture diagram

This architecture is illustrated below:

The client-server architecture eliminates many problems of Visual SourceSafe in remote access.


  • VSS Slow Performance over Internet

    Accessing the VSS database file system in a remote environment is very slow. In SourceAnywhere for VSS, the Visual SourceSafe repository folder only interacts with SourceAnywhere for VSS Server, which is installed on the same server or in the same LAN with the VSS database. The client sends requests to the server and gets the result back via TCP/IP. The performance is greatly improved.

    Furthermore, SourceAnywhere for VSS introduces Cache Server to further improve VSS performance.

  • VSS Security

    For file-system based Visual SourceSafe to share documents, you have to share the whole VSS database folder, even if you only wish to share a single file in the database. Sharing the database folders totally exposes your valuable data to the outside, which may potentially cause the data to be copied or damaged. In SourceAnywhere for VSS, the Visual SourceSafe (VSS) database folder is only exposed to the SourceAnywhere for VSS Server. The security is greatly improved.

  • VSS Database Corruption

    With SourceSafe, the client side directly makes requests and changes to the VSS database file system, sometimes with slow internet access. This renders the database to be easily corrupted. With SourceAnywhere for VSS, the file system only interacts with SourceAnywhere for VSS. The VSS database corruption chance is reduced significantly.


SourceAnywhere for VSS application components:


  • Cache Server

    Cache Server is specifically designed for geographically distributed teams. Cache Server caches the files when they are transferred through it. When an offsite client needs to get or check out a file from server, if the file is cached in Cache Server, the Cache Server transfers the file to client directly, without relaying the file transfer request on to the remote SourceAnywhere for VSS Server. This way, the number of files to be transferred over the internet is significantly reduced.

    For more information about SourceAnywhere for VSS Cache Server, please refer to the Cache Server page.

  • Client

    Client software includes a Windows GUI Client (resemblingVSS UI), Windows Command Line Client, Java GUI Client, Java Command Line Client and an IDE Client.

    SourceAnywhere for VSS Windows GUI Client is a GUI application that resembles the SourceSafe Explorer user interface very much. SourceSafe users should find the SourceAnywhere for VSS Client to be familiar and easy to use. Users can perform most SourceSafe operations in a similar fashion.

  • Server

    Server is installed on the machine with access to the file system where the SourceSafe (VSS) database resides. Client and Server can communicate with each other through any standard TCP/IP connection.

    SourceAnywhere for VSS Server is installed as a system service, and hence the server can be installed on any windows platforms which support service, such as Windows NT, 2000, XP, 2003, 2008, Vista or 7. SourceAnywhere for VSS Server runs in the background with no user interface of any kind. Configuration of the Server is accomplished through the Server Manager.