Developing With Version Control Using Dropbox

Anyone who has done any kind of programming will attest to the value of version control (a feature that is sorely missing from MicroStrategy, but that’s a discussion for another day).  For me, when developing in Flex or Java, using some level of version control has saved me on many occasions.  To be specific, version control is the ability to view different versions of source code and roll back to specific points if necessary.  While traditional professional grade tools such as Microsoft Visual Source Safe/Team Foundation and Subversion are popular in multi-developer shops, I like to use something a little more subtle.

Dropbox is a free program/website that will automatically sync your files to their cloud.  You don’t have to do anything as far as “checkin/checkout”, it just works.  The beauty of using it as a versioning tool for development is that you never have to even think about saving backups of your code, you just focus on the coding.  Every modification to any file you touch (within the pre-designated Dropbox folder) is synced and versioned.  If you want to see what the code used to look like or even roll back to any prior version, the web interface contains the option to restore old copies.

From here you can peak at the prior version of the file by clicking on the Preview icon, and do a restore by selecting the version of the file and clicking Restore.
Dropbox supports Windows, Mac, Linux and even Mobile platforms like iPhone and iPad (which can be a really handy way to recall a document when out of the office or at a meeting).  This makes it very convenient when working from multiple computers (such as work vs home) and I’ve found it is also useful to easily move files between Windows and Mac when working with the Mobile SDK.
You get 2gb for free, which is a ton of space for source code.  If you sign up with my referral link (which I’ve shamelessly peppered throughout this post), then we both get a bonus 250mb for a possible total of 8gb free.  So give it a try!  It has lots of uses outside of just MicroStrategy, but a very easy and important tool for MicroStrategy SDK Development.

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