CA Harvest Software Change Manager Review

This is the most difficult SCM tool I’ve ever used.


What is most valuable?

I appreciate the ability to separate the code by environments.

How has it helped my organization?

We are required to use this, but I personally wouldn’t have chosen it as our SCM of choice.

What needs improvement?

It needs to be simpler. This is the most difficult SCM tool I’ve ever used. It requires me to retrain new hires for several months. They should mimic TFS or Tortoise SVN.

The most common mistakes/hurdles new users have is checking in new files, or checking for updates.

If you don’t have your paths set perfectly, it’ll create a subfolder and all the files go in the wrong place, causing a headache to get it all fixed (so far, every new hire I’ve had has done this, some more than once).

The other issue, if you take a script for SQL Server Management Studio, save it, then check it in, it’ll most likely fail with an error message that doesn’t really give you any idea why it failed. So, you have to open the script in another text editor, and change the format to ANSI or something else to get it to work.

Another issue, sometimes, if I check out a file for update, and copy a file from another spot over this one, sometimes it works fine, other times it doesn’t detect any changes (this doesn’t detect changes issue happens in other scenarios as well, I can’t give a solid way to duplicate it).

Creating folders is not very intuitive either, for example, sometimes I need to create a blank folder (say to store attachments from users). You can’t create folders in SCM, the only way to create a folder is to check in a file that’s in a folder and have it create it.

So you have to create a temporary file, check that in to create the folder, then delete the file. Hope this helps, the learning curve is steep for a source control program.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have used it for four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I have not encountered any stability issues.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I have not encountered any scalability issues.

How is customer service and technical support?

I have never used it.

Which solutions did we use previously?

In previous companies, I utilized TFS, GitHub, and Tortoise SVN.

How was the initial setup?

The installation was easy, but learning to use it was complex. Sometimes it wouldn’t recognize file changes. If the paths weren’t correct, it would put files into the wrong folders.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Pick another tool if you can

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

We did not evaluate alternatives as this was corporate mandated.

What other advice do I have?

Choose another product!

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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