libeconf  0.5.2

libeconf is a highly flexible and configurable library to parse and manage key=value configuration files. It reads configuration file snippets from different directories and builds the final configuration file for the application from it.

The first file is the vendor provided configuration file. There are two methods of overriding this vendor settings: Copy the file from /usr/_vendordir_ to /etc and modify the settings (see Example 1). Alternatively, a directory named file._suffix_.d/ within /etc can be created, with drop-in files in the form name._suffix_ (see Example 2). These files contain only the changes of the specific settings the user is interested in. There can be several such drop-in files, they are processed in lexicographic order of their filename.

The first method is useful to override the complete configuration file with an own one, the vendor supplied configuration is ignored.

So, if /etc/_example_._suffix_ exists, /usr/_vendor_/_example_._suffix_ will not be read. The disadvantage is, that changes of the vendor configuration file, due e.g. an package update, are ignored and the user has to manually merge them.

The other method will continue to use /usr/_vendor_/_example_._suffix_ as base configuration file and merge all changes from /etc/_example_._suffix_.d/*._suffix_. So the user will automatically get improvements of the vendor, with the drawback, that they could be incompatible with the user made changes. If there is a file with the same name in /usr/_vendor_/_example_._suffix_.d/ and in /etc/_example_._suffix_.d/*._suffix_., the file in /usr/_vendor_/_example_._suffix_.d/ will completely ignored.

To disable a configuration file supplied by the vendor, the recommended way is to place a symlink to /dev/null in the configuration directory in /etc/, with the same filename as the vendor configuration file.

Example 1

If a /etc/_example_._suffix_ files exists:

  • /etc/_example_._suffix_
  • /usr/_vendor_/_example_._suffix_.d/*._suffix_
  • /etc/_example_._suffix_.d/*._suffix_

Example 2

The list of files and directories read if no /etc/_example_._suffix_ file exists:

  • /usr/_vendor_/_example_._suffix_
  • /usr/_vendor_/_example_._suffix_.d/*._suffix_
  • /etc/_example_._suffix_.d/*._suffix_


The API is written in plain C. The description can be found here :