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dh_configpackage - add maintainer script rules to displace, hide, or transform files


dh_configpackage [--displace path] [--hide path] [--undisplace path] [--unhide file]
[--transform transformation] [debhelper options] [-n]


dh_configpackage is a debhelper program to create "configuration packages". These
packages provide an ideal way to distribute configurations to target systems while still
affording local system administrators a degree of control over their workstations. The
motivation and philosophy behind this style of packaging is described in detail on the
config-package-dev website. Configuration packages make use of dpkg diversions and
maintainer script snippets to provide three primary operations: displacing, hiding, and
transforming files.

The displace operation consists of replacing a file on the target system. The original
file is renamed out of the way and diverted in the dpkg database. The replacement file is
then installed by the package, and the config-package-dev maintainer script snippets
create a symlink from the original name. A common use of this is to install a wrapper
script for an executable.

The transform operation is a special case of the displace operation. At build time, a
"transform script" is applied to the original source, and the result is used as the
replacement in the displace operation. A common use of this is to change one value in a
config file without needing to re-type the entire config file (and risk bit-rot).

The hide operation is yet another special case of the displace operation, namely that
there is no replacement or symlink. Instead, the file is diverted to a unique path on the
target system, thus preserving its contents. A common use of this is to suppress a
snippet file in a configuration directory (e.g. /etc/foo.d), thus disabling a specific
operation or configuration.

The displace extension is a suffix appended to the diverted versions of files, and this
suffix plus the string "-orig" is appended to the original versions of the files. The
default value is the first word of the package name. For example, the extension for
debathena-bin-example would be ".debathena". So if debathena-bin-example displaced
/bin/true, the original /bin/true would be found at /bin/true.debathena-orig and the new
version (installed by e.g. dh_install) found at /bin/true.debathena. /bin/true itself
would become a symbolic link. (For the remainder of this documentation, ".debathena" will
be used as the displace extension.)

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