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In a server with several packages installed (nginx, php, etc) and configured with .conf files how can I avoid problems with updates that introduce new config parameters? Currently whenever I update, my old config is renamed or overwritten and I have to manually merge the two, which can be tedious.

I develop with SublimeText2 and like how it has Settings - Default and Settings - User separate so I can override settings that I actually want to modify and leave everything else default. Is there a way I could easily do something like this with the packages I install?

Btw, I'm using CentOS 6.

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Use a configuration management system like puppet to make sure your conf files are in sync with the "master version". Or you could possibly try making your custom conf files immutable after you have them setup how you like (using the chattr +i filename command).

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A big config management system is good, but if you want something lighter weight one of the old-style local source-code management systems (RCS, SCCS) does fine for me.

I put my config files under RCS - it requires nothing more than the tool installing, and for tidiness' sake, mkdir ./RCS in any directory where a config file exists - and I've got the ability to roll back any change made to a config file, or to roll back to any previous version, and a set of logs to tell me what changes I made, when, and why.

That said, though, most yum updates shouldn't overwrite your config files; instead, a new candidate foo.conf.rpmnew should appear. If this isn't happening for you, you might want to look into why.

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