cvs - Concurrent Versions System support files
cvs is a system for providing source control to hierarchi-
cal collections of source directories. Commands and pro-
cedures for using cvs are described in cvs(1).
cvs manages source repositories, the directories contain-
ing master copies of the revision-controlled files, by
copying particular revisions of the files to (and modifi-
cations back from) developers' private working directo-
ries. In terms of file structure, each individual source
repository is an immediate subdirectory of $CVSROOT.
The files described here are supporting files; they do not
have to exist for cvs to operate, but they allow you to
make cvs operation more flexible.
You can use the `modules' file to define symbolic names
for collections of source maintained with cvs. If there
is no `modules' file, developers must specify complete
path names (absolute, or relative to $CVSROOT) for the
files they wish to manage with cvs commands.
You can use the `commitinfo' file to define programs to
execute whenever `cvs commit' is about to execute. These
programs are used for ``pre-commit'' checking to verify
that the modified, added, and removed files are really
ready to be committed. Some uses for this check might be
to turn off a portion (or all) of the source repository
from a particular person or group. Or, perhaps, to verify
that the changed files conform to the site's standards for
12 February 1992 1
You can use the `cvswrappers' file to record cvs wrapper
commands to be used when checking files into and out of
the repository. Wrappers allow the file or directory to
be processed on the way in and out of CVS. The intended
uses are many, one possible use would be to reformat a C
file before the file is checked in, so all of the code in
the repository looks the same.
You can use the `loginfo' file to define programs to exe-
cute after any commit, which writes a log entry for
changes in the repository. These logging programs might
be used to append the log message to a file. Or send the
log message through electronic mail to a group of develop-
ers. Or, perhaps, post the log message to a particular
You can use the `taginfo' file to define programs to exe-
cute after any tag or rtag operation. These programs
might be used to append a message to a file listing the
new tag name and the programmer who created it, or send
mail to a group of developers, or, perhaps, post a message
to a particular newsgroup.
You can use the `rcsinfo' file to define forms for log
You can use the `editinfo' file to define a program to ex-
ecute for editing/validating `cvs commit' log entries.
This is most useful when used with a `rcsinfo' forms spec-
ification, as it can verify that the proper fields of the
form have been filled in by the user committing the
You can use the `cvsignore' file to specify the default
list of files to ignore during update.
You can use the `history' file to record the cvs commands
that affect the repository. The creation of this file en-
ables history logging.
The `modules' file records your definitions of
names for collections of source code. cvs will use
these definitions if you use cvs to check in a file
with the right format to
The `modules' file may contain blank lines and com-
ments (lines beginning with `#') as well as module
definitions. Long lines can be continued on the
next line by specifying a backslash (``\'') as the
last character on the line.
12 February 1992 2
A module definition is a single line of the
`modules' file, in either of two formats. In both
cases, mname represents the symbolic module name,
and the remainder of the line is its definition.
mname -a aliases...
This represents the simplest way of defining a mod-
ule mname. The `-a' flags the definition as a sim-
ple alias: cvs will treat any use of mname (as a
command argument) as if the list of names aliases
had been specified instead. aliases may contain
either other module names or paths. When you use
paths in aliases, `cvs checkout' creates all inter-
mediate directories in the working directory, just
as if the path had been specified explicitly in the
mname [ options ] dir [ files... ] [ &&module... ]
In the simplest case, this form of module defini-
tion reduces to `mname dir'. This defines all the
files in directory dir as module mname. dir is a
relative path (from $CVSROOT) to a directory of
source in one of the source repositories. In this
case, on checkout, a single directory called mname
is created as a working directory; no intermediate
directory levels are used by default, even if dir
was a path involving several directory levels.
By explicitly specifying files in the module defi-
nition after dir, you can select particular files
from directory dir. The sample definition for mod-
ules is an example of a module defined with a sin-
gle file from a particular directory. Here is an-
m4test unsupported/gnu/m4 foreach.m4 forloop.m4
With this definition, executing `cvs checkout
m4test' will create a single working directory
`m4test' containing the two files listed, which
both come from a common directory several levels
deep in the cvs source repository.
A module definition can refer to other modules by
including `&&module' in its definition. checkout
creates a subdirectory for each such module, in
your working directory.
New in cvs 1.3; avoid this feature if sharing mod-
ule definitions with older versions of cvs.
Finally, you can use one or more of the following
options in module definitions:
12 February 1992 3
`-d name', to name the working directory something
other than the module name.
New in cvs 1.3; avoid this feature if sharing mod-
ule definitions with older versions of cvs.
`-i prog' allows you to specify a program prog to
run whenever files in a module are committed. prog
runs with a single argument, the full pathname of
the affected directory in a source repository.
The `commitinfo', `loginfo', and `editinfo' files
provide other ways to call a program on commit.
`-o prog' allows you to specify a program prog to
run whenever files in a module are checked out.
prog runs with a single argument, the module name.
`-e prog' allows you to specify a program prog to
run whenever files in a module are exported. prog
runs with a single argument, the module name.
`-t prog' allows you to specify a program prog to
run whenever files in a module are tagged. prog
runs with two arguments: the module name and the
symbolic tag specified to rtag.
`-u prog' allows you to specify a program prog to
run whenever `cvs update' is executed from the top-
level directory of the checked-out module. prog
runs with a single argument, the full path to the
source repository for this module.
commitinfo, loginfo, rcsinfo, editinfo
These files all specify programs to call at differ-
ent points in the `cvs commit' process. They have
a common structure. Each line is a pair of fields:
a regular expression, separated by whitespace from
a filename or command-line template. Whenever one
of the regular expression matches a directory name
in the repository, the rest of the line is used.
If the line begins with a # character, the entire
line is considered a comment and is ignored.
Whitespace between the fields is also ignored.
For `loginfo', the rest of the line is a command-
line template to execute. The templates can in-
clude not only a program name, but whatever list of
arguments you wish. If you write `%s' somewhere on
the argument list, cvs supplies, at that point, the
list of files affected by the commit. The first
entry in the list is the relative path within the
source repository where the change is being made.
The remaining arguments list the files that are be-
ing modified, added, or removed by this commit in-
12 February 1992 4
For `taginfo', the rest of the line is a command-
line template to execute. The arguments passed to
the command are, in order, the tagname , operation
(i.e. add for `tag', mov for `tag -F', and del for
`tag -d`), repository , and any remaining are pairs
of filename revision . A non-zero exit of the fil-
ter program will cause the tag to be aborted.
For `commitinfo', the rest of the line is a com-
mand-line template to execute. The template can
include not only a program name, but whatever list
of arguments you wish. The full path to the cur-
rent source repository is appended to the template,
followed by the file names of any files involved in
the commit (added, removed, and modified files).
For `rcsinfo', the rest of the line is the full
path to a file that should be loaded into the log
For `editinfo', the rest of the line is a command-
line template to execute. The template can include
not only a program name, but whatever list of argu-
ments you wish. The full path to the current log
message template file is appended to the template.
You can use one of two special strings instead of a
regular expression: `ALL' specifies a command line
template that must always be executed, and
`DEFAULT' specifies a command line template to use
if no regular expression is a match.
The `commitinfo' file contains commands to execute
before any other commit activity, to allow you to
check any conditions that must be satisfied before
commit can proceed. The rest of the commit will
execute only if all selected commands from this
file exit with exit status 0.
The `rcsinfo' file allows you to specify log tem-
plates for the commit logging session; you can use
this to provide a form to edit when filling out the
commit log. The field after the regular expres-
sion, in this file, contains filenames (of files
containing the logging forms) rather than command
The `editinfo' file allows you to execute a script
before the commit starts, but after the log infor-
mation is recorded. These "edit" scripts can veri-
fy information recorded in the log file. If the
edit script exits wth a non-zero exit status, the
commit is aborted.
12 February 1992 5
The `loginfo' file contains commands to execute at
the end of a commit. The text specified as a com-
mit log message is piped through the command; typi-
cal uses include sending mail, filing an article in
a newsgroup, or appending to a central file.
The default list of files (or sh(1) file name pat-
terns) to ignore during `cvs update'. At startup
time, cvs loads the compiled in default list of
file name patterns (see cvs(1)). Then the per-
repository list included in $CVSROOT/CVSROOT/cvsig-
nore is loaded, if it exists. Then the per-user
list is loaded from `$HOME/.cvsignore'. Finally,
as cvs traverses through your directories, it will
load any per-directory `.cvsignore' files whenever
it finds one. These per-directory files are only
valid for exactly the directory that contains them,
not for any sub-directories.
Create this file in $CVSROOT/CVSROOT to enable his-
tory logging (see the description of `cvs
Copyright (C) 1992 Cygnus Support, Brian Berliner, and
Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim
copies of this manual provided the copyright notice and
this permission notice are preserved on all copies.
Permission is granted to copy and distribute modified ver-
sions of this manual under the conditions for verbatim
copying, provided that the entire resulting derived work
is distributed under the terms of a permission notice
identical to this one.
Permission is granted to copy and distribute translations
of this manual into another language, under the above con-
ditions for modified versions, except that this permission
notice may be included in translations approved by the
Free Software Foundation instead of in the original En-
12 February 1992 6