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12.1 Keyword List

This is a list of the keywords:


The login name of the user who checked in the revision.


A standard header (similar to $Header$, but with the CVS root stripped off). It contains the relative pathname of the RCS file to the CVS root, the revision number, the date (UTC), the author, the state, and the locker (if locked). Files will normally never be locked when you use CVS.

Note that this keyword has only been recently introduced to CVS and may cause problems with existing installations if $CVSHeader$ is already in the files for a different purpose. This keyword may be excluded using the KeywordExpand=eCVSHeader in the `CVSROOT/config' file. See Configuring Keyword Expansion for more details.


The date and time (UTC) the revision was checked in.


A standard header containing the full pathname of the RCS file, the revision number, the date (UTC), the author, the state, and the locker (if locked). Files will normally never be locked when you use CVS.


Same as $Header$, except that the RCS filename is without a path.


Tag name used to check out this file. The keyword is expanded only if one checks out with an explicit tag name. For example, when running the command cvs co -r first, the keyword expands to `Name: first'.


The login name of the user who locked the revision (empty if not locked, which is the normal case unless cvs admin -l is in use).


The log message supplied during commit, preceded by a header containing the RCS filename, the revision number, the author, and the date (UTC). Existing log messages are not replaced. Instead, the new log message is inserted after $Log:…$. By default, each new line is prefixed with the same string which precedes the $Log$ keyword, unless it exceeds the MaxCommentLeaderLength set in `CVSROOT/config'.

For example, if the file contains:

  /* Here is what people have been up to:
   * $Log: frob.c,v $
   * Revision 1.1  1997/01/03 14:23:51  joe
   * Add the superfrobnicate option

then additional lines which are added when expanding the $Log$ keyword will be preceded by ` * '. Unlike previous versions of CVS and RCS, the comment leader from the RCS file is not used. The $Log$ keyword is useful for accumulating a complete change log in a source file, but for several reasons it can be problematic.

If the prefix of the $Log$ keyword turns out to be longer than MaxCommentLeaderLength, CVS will skip expansion of this keyword unless UseArchiveCommentLeader is also set in `CVSROOT/config' and a `comment leader' is set in the RCS archive file, in which case the comment leader will be used instead. For more on setting the comment leader in the RCS archive file, See section admin--Administration. For more on configuring the default $Log$ substitution behavior, See section The CVSROOT/config configuration file.

See section Problems with the $Log$ keyword..


The name of the RCS file without a path.


The revision number assigned to the revision.


The full pathname of the RCS file.


The state assigned to the revision. States can be assigned with cvs admin -s--see admin options.

Local keyword

The LocalKeyword option in the `CVSROOT/config' file may be used to specify a local keyword which is to be used as an alias for one of the keywords: $Id$, $Header$, or $CVSHeader$. For example, if the `CVSROOT/config' file contains a line with LocalKeyword=MYBSD=CVSHeader, then a file with the local keyword $MYBSD$ will be expanded as if it were a $CVSHeader$ keyword. If the src/frob.c file contained this keyword, it might look something like this:

   * $MYBSD: src/frob.c,v 1.1 2003/05/04 09:27:45 john Exp $ 

Many repositories make use of a such a "local keyword" feature. An old patch to CVS provided the LocalKeyword feature using a tag= option and called this the "custom tag" or "local tag" feature. It was used in conjunction with the what they called the tagexpand= option. In CVS this other option is known as the KeywordExpand option. See Configuring Keyword Expansion for more details.

Examples from popular projects include: $FreeBSD$, $NetBSD$, $OpenBSD$, $XFree86$, $Xorg$.

The advantage of this is that you can include your local version information in a file using this local keyword without disrupting the upstream version information (which may be a different local keyword or a standard keyword). Allowing bug reports and the like to more properly identify the source of the original bug to the third-party and reducing the number of conflicts that arise during an import of a new version.

All keyword expansion except the local keyword may be disabled using the KeywordExpand option in the `CVSROOT/config' file--see Configuring Keyword Expansion for more details.

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