Jenkins Null Pointer on CVS

February 10, 2015

I got this error trying to access CVS from one of my Jenkins projects:

Started by timer
Building in workspace /var/lib/jenkins/workspace/project
FATAL: null
    at hudson.scm.CVSSCM.getBranchName(
    at hudson.scm.CVSSCM.buildEnvVars(
    at hudson.model.AbstractBuild.getEnvironment(
    at hudson.scm.AbstractCvs.checkout(
    at hudson.scm.CVSSCM.checkout(
    at hudson.model.AbstractProject.checkout(
    at hudson.model.AbstractBuild$AbstractBuildExecution.defaultCheckout(
    at jenkins.scm.SCMCheckoutStrategy.checkout(
    at hudson.model.AbstractBuild$
    at hudson.model.Run.execute(
    at hudson.model.ResourceController.execute(

Inadvertently, the CVS connection was marked as not requiring a password. Once the password was added back in, the problem went away. We also got a better error if we disallowed cvs update in the project config.