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    Additional Considerations

    A D V E R T I S E M E N T

    Home » configuration-management » vss »Considerations

    Additional Considerations

    Install the Database in a Secure Location

    During installation of VSS, a database is created by default in the VSS Data folder, which is under Program Files. That database is intended for personal use only and should not be shared. Use the database in the default location only if you are required to by other programs.

    Any Windows user who has Full Control permissions for the VSS folders can replace the executable files in the Win32 folder. Also, all VSS database users require permissions for the VSS database folder, and if that folder is under the Program Files folder, it contains executable files and related resources.

    Do not create a shared database in your system folders or in your Documents and Settings folders.

    Hide the VSS Data Share

    You can hide the network share so that it is very difficult for remote Windows users to determine whether a server has a share and whether VSS is installed. The network share does not appear when a Windows user browses the server. To hide the network share, add $ to the end of the folder name, for example, instead of \\server\vssdb1 use \\server\vssdb1$. You will have to tell your VSS users the exact location of the database so that they can add the database to the list of Available databases in the Open SourceSafe Database dialog box.

    Shadow Folders

    If you create a shadow folder for a VSS project, the Windows user permissions for the VSS folders are not inherited by the shadow folder. Grant Read and Write permissions for the shadow folder to all VSS users, and grant only Read permissions to any Windows users who require read-only access to the shadow folder. For details, see Create Shadow Folders.

    It is recommended that you create a shadow folder on a different share from the VSS database so that Windows users with read-only access to the shadow folder do not have any access permissions for the share that contains the database. It is also recommended that you create a shadow folder for a specific VSS project, not for the root project $, so that Windows users who have access to the shadow folder have access to only that VSS project and not to your entire database.

    Note When you delete a file or project from a VSS project, that file or project is not deleted from the shadow folder.

    Journal File

    If you create a journal file, it is recommended that you secure that file by locating it in the same folder as the Srcsafe.ini file and granting Windows Read and Write permissions for the journal file to VSS users.

    Permissions Required to Install and Run VSS
    You must be a Windows Administrator for the computer to install VSS, but Administrator permissions are not required to run either the VSS Administrator program or VSS Explorer and the command line.

    The Admin and Guest User Names
    When you create a VSS database, two user names are created by default: Admin and Guest. The passwords for the Admin user and the Guest user are blank. It is recommended that you set a password for the Admin user by using the Change Password command in the VSS Administrator program. You can either delete the Guest user or set a password for the Guest user by using the Change Password command in the VSS Administrator program. For details, see Change a User Password.

    If your VSS users must type a user name and password to log on to VSS, tell them not to use the same password for the operating system and for VSS. If the passwords are the same, and a hacker finds the VSS password, the hacker can use the user's identity to access the operating system and all programs.

    SSUSER and SSPWD Environment Variables
    You can set the SSUSER and SSPWD environment variables on your computer to your VSS user name and password so that you avoid the logon prompt each time you enter a VSS command at the command line or start VSS Explorer. If you set those environment variables, any user of your computer might be able to read those variables and run VSS using your user name and password.

    Using the Network Name for Automatic User Logon
    Visual SourceSafe provides a Use network name for automatic user log in option that can be used to allow Visual SourceSafe integration with Microsoft Visual InterDev, Visual Studio .Net, and FrontPage.

    Use of VSS Project Rights
    If you want to specify access for individual VSS users or individual VSS projects, use the Rights by Project and Rights Assignments for Users commands on the Tools menu in the VSS Administrator program. In Visual SourceSafe version 6.0c and earlier, you can activate the menu commands by selecting Enable Project Security on the Project Security tab in the SourceSafe Options dialog box. In later versions of Visual SourceSafe, you can activate the menu commands by selecting Enable Rights and Assignments commands on the Project Rights tab in the SourceSafe Options dialog box.

    Audit User Activity
    Using the VSS Administrator program, you can create a journal file, which is a text file that records any action by a VSS user that generates a history entry for a file or project in the VSS database. For details, see General Options Tab (Tools Menu) or Journal_File Initialization Variable. Windows Administrators can audit many security-related events, for example, access to particular files and folders. Monitoring such security-related events can help a VSS Administrator to detect attempts to compromise the data in a VSS database.

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