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6.10 Client Environment Variables

CVS reads the calling user's environment variables, described in the following list. The variables in the list are read and used by the process that runs on the client computer. Note that these variables must be in the calling user's environment, so different users may experience different behavior.

In local-access mode, CVS uses both client and server environment variables.


Used for debugging CVS in client/server mode. This variable should be set to a filename. If it is set, everything sent to the server is stored in the filename.in file and everything received by the client is stored in filename.out.


Used to set the port the client uses to connect to the CVS server in kserver, gserver, and pserver modes. By default, clients use port 2401 (gserver or pserver) or port 1999 (kserver) to connect to the server.


A whitespace-separated list of filename patterns that should be ignored. See .cvsignore in the previous section.


Used to set the editor CVS calls when it opens an editor for log messages. On Unix and Linux systems, this variable defaults to vi. Using CVSEDITOR to customize CVS is preferred, as the other variables may be used by other programs as well. CVSEDITOR is searched first, then EDITOR, and VISUAL last. If the -e editor CVS option is used, it overrides the environment variables.


Used to change the file CVS uses to store and retrieve the password in pserver remote-access mode. The file defaults to .cvspass in the user's home directory.


If this variable is set to 1, CVS tries to check sandboxes out in read-only mode. (CVS actually checks whether this variable is nonnull, so it works regardless of the setting. This behavior may change in the future.)


May contain the full pathname of a CVS repository, as described in Chapter 3. When working in a sandbox, this variable is not needed. If working outside a sandbox, either this variable must be present or the -d repository_path command-line option must be used.


Used to set the program CVS calls to connect to a remote repository when using ext mode. The program defaults to rsh.


If connecting to a CVS server using rsh, this variable is used to determine which program to start on the server side. In ext and server modes, the program defaults to cvs. In fork mode this defaults to the full path of the executing CVS client program.


May contain one wrapper, as explained in Chapter 3.


Used to determine the location of the user's home directory, to enable CVS to locate its dot-files. On Unix, Linux, and related systems, only HOME is used. On Windows systems, HOMEDRIVE and HOMEPATH are used together. Some Windows operating systems (NT and later) set these variables automatically. If yours doesn't, HOMEDRIVE should be set in the format C:, and HOMEPATH should be set in the format \home\jenn.


This environment variable became obsolete in CVS 1.9.20. It was used for the path to the external rcs program before rcs was added to the CVS distribution.

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