[clug] Subversion for sysadmin tasks

Tony and Robyn Lewis beakysnugger at yahoo.co.uk
Mon Jul 31 11:16:48 GMT 2006

Steve Granger wrote:
> Hi,
> I'm looking to get an idea of some of the best practices that people
> follow for using subversion (or CVS... or even RCS) for assisting
> systems maintenance. I'm looking to maintain files in /etc to start off
> with.

I don't think a (generic) RCS is what you want - not only for the 
permission issue you've come up with, but because RCSs tend to have the 
repository *elsewhere*.  That means that if you want to make a change, 
you have to either use /etc as your working copy, and you keep checking 
it in, or you have /etc as a read-only copy, and you have to check out a 
working copy, make changes, check in, and update your working copy.  
Turns into a lot of work.

My solution is to use rdiff-backup.

It's a great revisioning backup tool, handles permissions and user 
groups, and can work over ssh.  Thus your /etc is your master copy, and 
every time you make a significant change (or using cron) you can make 
another backup.  You can set rules like, keep 6 copies or 6 months worth 
of versions.


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