3

I search a software to track the changes made to linux server configuration.

Goal

If there is something wrong with the server I want to see the last configuration changes.

Needed features

  • Keep /etc/ in version control
  • List of installed packages and their versions. Needs to support dpkg and rpm.
  • Auto-commit the changes every hour.
  • Maybe: bash-History of user root.

Not needed

  • Configuration management: This is a different topic.
  • Restore: I just want a history. Restore is done by hand or configuration management.
  • For the first piece, etckeeper might be a good candidate. For packages, just a raw idea: dump package info before/after installs/updates/removals, diff the output, and put that into some repo (e.g. Apache with DAVSVN and auto-commit). For more specific recommendations, you'd need to add the package system used (RPM, DEB, …). – Izzy Jun 15 '16 at 11:12
  • @Izzy yes, etckeeper looks nice. AFAIK it does not dump package info. For me this is a valid answer, if you write your comment as answer, I will upvote it. – guettli Jun 15 '16 at 13:24
2

For the first piece, etckeeper might be a good candidate:

etckeeper is a collection of tools to let /etc be stored in a git, mercurial, bazaar or darcs repository. This lets you use git to review or revert changes that were made to /etc. Or even push the repository elsewhere for backups or cherry-picking configuration changes.

It hooks into package managers like apt to automatically commit changes made to /etc during package upgrades. It tracks file metadata that git does not normally support, but that is important for /etc, such as the permissions of /etc/shadow.

It's quite modular and configurable, while also being simple to use if you understand the basics of working with version control.

I've never used it myself,1 so I cannot say how well it meets your overall goal. As its description points out it hooks into package managers it might well be there is a way to cover tracking package changes as well. Worth noting, however: etckeeper is available via several distributions' repositories, e.g. for Debian and Ubuntu.

Further pointers worth checking:


1 I've just read about it in some blogs a while ago, which is how I know about it

  • yes, etckeeper looks like the right tool.... Nevertheless I wait until accepting it. Maybe there are other tools with a different strategy. – guettli Jul 19 '16 at 8:23
  • Fair enough. Though you can always move your "accept mark" to another answer, if a better one comes up – so you can't forget to accept anything :) – Izzy Jul 19 '16 at 8:25

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.