Keeping track of config file changes

Rick Stevens rstevens at
Wed Jun 15 19:52:04 UTC 2005

Harold Hallikainen wrote:
> I'm currently using CVS to keep track of code on various microcontroller
> projects. Should I just create a "project" for all my config files and
> import them into CVS when I start modifying them? Is anyone doing
> something like this? Over the years, I end up with LOTS of modified
> configs scattered around the system. How do you keep track of them?

We prefer bottom-posting here, Harold.

You can create a "module" for tracking this stuff, but it can get
gronchy.  What I typically do is use version numbers as filetypes and
use a symlink to point at the active one.  For example:

	[root at prophead samba]# ls -l smb.conf
	-rw-r--r--  1 root root 793 Mar 3 10:18 smb.conf.1
	-rw-r--r--  1 root root 793 Mar 4 14:28 smb.conf.2
	-rw-r--r--  1 root root 793 Mar 10 16:42 smb.conf.3
	-rw-r--r--  1 root root 793 Apr 22 12:20 smb.conf.4
	-rw-r--r--  1 root root 793 Apr 23 13:10 smb.conf.5
	-rw-r--r--  1 root root 793 Apr 24 11:22 smb.conf.6
	lrwxrwxrwx  1 root root 10 Apr 27 11:23 smb.conf -> smb.conf.6

It can be ugly, but it works.  That's one thing I miss from the old
VAX/VMS filesystem...automatic versioning.  Of course, for commonly-
modified files you eventually had to do a "purge/keep=n" to get rid of
the old versions.

>>Bob McClure Jr wrote:
>>>On Tue, Jun 14, 2005 at 07:57:10PM -0700, Harold Hallikainen wrote:
>>>>What's the best way to keep track of all the config file changes I've
>>>>over the years? I think it's kind of a lost cause on my existing
>>>>but on the next one I'd like to quickly find the changes so when I do an
>>>>update of something that requires a new config, I can put the changes
>>>>in. I'm thinking of putting something unique on each line I change, then
>>>>doing a big grep. I use CVS to track my own code, but it seems a bit
>>>>unwieldy for this application. Any suggestions?
>>>RCS comes to mind.
>>Uh, CVS (RCS' big brother).  Comes with Fedora/RH.

- Rick Stevens, Senior Systems Engineer     rstevens at -
- VitalStream, Inc.              -
-                                                                    -
-        Polygon: A dead parrot (With apologies to John Cleese)      -

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