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Re: [Gnu-arch-users] controlling /etc with arch

From: Jan Hudec
Subject: Re: [Gnu-arch-users] controlling /etc with arch
Date: Mon, 9 Aug 2004 08:21:20 +0200
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.6+20040722i

On Mon, Aug 09, 2004 at 15:23:06 +1000, Geoff wrote:
>  Has anyone got any recipies or experience to share about using arch to 
> control the /etc directory on a machine? I've looked around a bit, but 
> haven't any cases of people documenting how they approached it on the web.

I've been doing it for a while.

You need a version of tla that does name escaping, since some names may
contain spaces.

Then you need to set up a tagging-method where everything is source,
except for things known to be backup. I use (~|\.dpkg-[a-z.-]*)$ for
backup --- that's for debian, I am not sure how other package managers
name the backup configs when upgrading a package. The unrecognized must
be explicitely set to ^$, otherwise it will use the default, which you
don't want. I also exclude mtab and network/ifstate, using the
.arch-inventory files.

And you need to commit periodicaly. I call tla diff || tla commit from

I have a small perl script in address@hidden/etcguard--main--0
({archives}/utils-2004). The script installs the
tagging method in the begining and then it wraps few tla commands.
It has diff, which calls changes --diffs; ci, which calls vim on the
patchlog and then calls commit (it uses command options of vim to show
the changes beside the log); and autoci, which outputs changes and if
there are any, commits with a standard log. This is what I call from

The script should perhaps be in contrib somewhere, but it will need some
configurability before that. It has everything hardcoded just now.

                                                 Jan 'Bulb' Hudec 

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