This manual page is part of the POSIX Programmer's Manual. The Linux
implementation of this interface may differ (consult the corresponding Linux
manual page for details of Linux behavior), or the interface may not be
implemented on Linux.
admin — create and administer SCCS files ( DEVELOPMENT
admin −i [name] [−n] [−a login] [−d flag] [−e login] [−f flag]
[−m mrlist] [−r rel] [−t[name] [−y[comment]] newfile
admin −n [−a login] [−d flag] [−e login] [−f flag] [−m mrlist]
[−t[name]] [−y[comment]] newfile...
admin [−a login] [−d flag] [−m mrlist] [−r rel] [−t[name]] file...
admin −h file...
admin −z file...
utility shall create new SCCS files or change parameters of
existing ones. If a named file does not exist, it shall be created, and its
parameters shall be initialized according to the specified options. Parameters
not initialized by an option shall be assigned a default value. If a named
file does exist, parameters corresponding to specified options shall be
changed, and other parameters shall be left as is.
All SCCS filenames supplied by the application shall be of the form s.
. New SCCS files shall be given read-only permission mode.
Write permission in the parent directory is required to create a file. All
writing done by admin
shall be to a temporary x-file
, named x.
) created with read-only mode if
is creating a new SCCS file, or created with the same mode as
that of the SCCS file if the file already exists. After successful execution
, the SCCS file shall be removed (if it exists), and the
shall be renamed with the name of the SCCS file. This ensures
that changes are made to the SCCS file only if no errors occur.
utility shall also use a transient lock file (named z.
), which is used to prevent simultaneous updates to the SCCS
file; see get
utility shall conform to the Base Definitions volume of
POSIX.1‐2008, Section 12.2
, Utility Syntax Guidelines
except that the −i
, and −y
options have optional option-arguments. These optional option-arguments shall
not be presented as separate arguments. The following options are supported:
- Create a new SCCS file. When −n is used
without −i, the SCCS file shall be created with control
information but without any file data.
- Specify the name of a file from which the text for a
new SCCS file shall be taken. The text constitutes the first delta of the
file (see the −r option for the delta numbering scheme). If
the −i option is used, but the name option-argument
is omitted, the text shall be obtained by reading the standard input. If
this option is omitted, the SCCS file shall be created with control
information but without any file data. The −i option implies
the −n option.
- −r SID
- Specify the SID of the initial delta to be inserted. This
SID shall be a trunk SID; that is, the branch and sequence numbers shall
be zero or missing. The level number is optional, and defaults to 1.
- Specify the name of a file from which descriptive
text for the SCCS file shall be taken. In the case of existing SCCS files
(neither −i nor −n is specified):
- A −t option without a name
option-argument shall cause the removal of descriptive text (if any)
currently in the SCCS file.
- A −t option with a name
option-argument shall cause the text (if any) in the named file to replace
the descriptive text (if any) currently in the SCCS file.
- −f flag
- Specify a flag, and, possibly, a value for the
flag, to be placed in the SCCS file. Several −f
options may be supplied on a single admin command line.
Implementations shall recognize the following flags and associated
- Allow use of the −b option on a get
command to create branch deltas.
- Specify the highest release (that is, ceiling), a number
less than or equal to 9999, which may be retrieved by a get command
for editing. The default value for an unspecified c flag shall be
- Specify the lowest release (that is, floor), a number
greater than 0 but less than 9999, which may be retrieved by a get
command for editing. The default value for an unspecified f flag
shall be 1.
- Specify the default delta number (SID) to be used by a
- Treat the ``No ID keywords'' message issued by get
or delta as a fatal error. In the absence of this flag, the message
is only a warning. The message is issued if no SCCS identification
keywords (see get) are found in the text retrieved or stored
in the SCCS file. If a value is supplied, the application shall ensure
that the keywords exactly match the given string; however, the string
shall contain a keyword, and no embedded <newline> characters.
- Allow concurrent get commands for editing on the
same SID of an SCCS file. This allows multiple concurrent updates to the
same version of the SCCS file.
- Specify a list of releases to which deltas can no
longer be made (that is, get −e against one of these
locked releases fails). Conforming applications shall use the following
syntax to specify a list. Implementations may accept additional
forms as an extension:
<list> ::= a | <range-list>
<range-list> ::= <range> | <range-list>, <range>
<range> ::= <SID>
The character a
in the list
shall be equivalent to specifying all
releases for the named SCCS file. The non-terminal < SID
range shall be the delta number of an existing delta associated with the SCCS
- Cause delta to create a null delta in each of those
releases (if any) being skipped when a delta is made in a new release (for
example, in making delta 5.1 after delta 2.7, releases 3 and 4 are
skipped). These null deltas shall serve as anchor points so that branch
deltas may later be created from them. The absence of this flag shall
cause skipped releases to be nonexistent in the SCCS file, preventing
branch deltas from being created from them in the future. During the
initial creation of an SCCS file, the n flag may be ignored; that
is, if the −r option is used to set the release number of
the initial SID to a value greater than 1, null deltas need not be created
for the ``skipped'' releases.
- Substitute user-definable text for all occurrences
of the % Q% keyword in the SCCS file text retrieved by
- Specify the module name of the SCCS file substituted for
all occurrences of the % M% keyword in the SCCS file text retrieved
by get. If the m flag is not specified, the value assigned
shall be the name of the SCCS file with the leading '.'
- Specify the type of module in the SCCS file
substituted for all occurrences of the % Y% keyword in the SCCS
file text retrieved by get.
- Cause delta to prompt for modification request (MR)
numbers as the reason for creating a delta. The optional value specifies
the name of an MR number validation program. (If this flag is set when
creating an SCCS file, the application shall ensure that the m
option is also used even if its value is null.)
- −d flag
- Remove (delete) the specified flag from an SCCS
file. Several −d options may be supplied on a single
admin command. See the −f option for allowable
flag names. (The llist flag gives a list of
releases to be unlocked. See the −f option for further
description of the l flag and the syntax of a list.)
- −a login
- Specify a login name, or numerical group ID, to be
added to the list of users who may make deltas (changes) to the SCCS file.
A group ID shall be equivalent to specifying all login names common
to that group ID. Several −a options may be used on a single
admin command line. As many logins, or numerical group IDs,
as desired may be on the list simultaneously. If the list of users is
empty, then anyone may add deltas. If login or group ID is preceded
by a '!', the users so specified shall be denied permission to make
- −e login
- Specify a login name, or numerical group ID, to be
erased from the list of users allowed to make deltas (changes) to the SCCS
file. Specifying a group ID is equivalent to specifying all login
names common to that group ID. Several −e options may be
used on a single admin command line.
- Insert the comment text into the SCCS file as a
comment for the initial delta in a manner identical to that of
delta. In the POSIX locale, omission of the −y option
shall result in a default comment line being inserted in the form:
"date and time created %s %s by %s", <date>, <time>, <login>
where < date
> is expressed in the format of the date
conversion specification, <
> in the format of the date
conversion specification format, and < login
> is the login name
of the user creating the file.
- −m mrlist
- Insert the list of modification request (MR) numbers into
the SCCS file as the reason for creating the initial delta in a manner
identical to delta. The application shall ensure that the v
flag is set and the MR numbers are validated if the v flag has a
value (the name of an MR number validation program). A diagnostic message
shall be written if the v flag is not set or MR validation
- Check the structure of the SCCS file and compare the newly
computed checksum with the checksum that is stored in the SCCS file. If
the newly computed checksum does not match the checksum in the SCCS file,
a diagnostic message shall be written.
- Recompute the SCCS file checksum and store it in the first
line of the SCCS file (see the −h option above). Note that
use of this option on a truly corrupted file may prevent future detection
of the corruption.
The following operands shall be supported:
- A pathname of an existing SCCS file or a directory. If
file is a directory, the admin utility shall behave as
though each file in the directory were specified as a named file, except
that non-SCCS files (last component of the pathname does not begin with
s.) and unreadable files shall be silently ignored.
- A pathname of an SCCS file to be created.
If exactly one file
operand appears, and it is
, the standard input shall be read; each line of the standard
input shall be taken to be the name of an SCCS file to be processed. Non-SCCS
files and unreadable files shall be silently ignored.
The standard input shall be a text file used only if −i
specified without an option-argument or if a file
operand is specified as '−'
. If the first character of any
standard input line is <SOH> in the POSIX locale, the results are
The existing SCCS files shall be text files of an unspecified format.
The application shall ensure that the file named by the −i
option-argument shall be a text file; if the first
character of any line in this file is <SOH> in the POSIX locale, the
results are unspecified. If this file contains more than 99999 lines, the
number of lines recorded in the header for this file shall be 99999 for this
The following environment variables shall affect the execution of admin
- Provide a default value for the internationalization
variables that are unset or null. (See the Base Definitions volume of
POSIX.1‐2008, Section 8.2, Internationalization
Variables for the precedence of internationalization variables used to
determine the values of locale categories.)
- If set to a non-empty string value, override the values of
all the other internationalization variables.
- Determine the locale for the interpretation of sequences of
bytes of text data as characters (for example, single-byte as opposed to
multi-byte characters in arguments and input files).
Determine the locale that should be used to affect the format and contents
of diagnostic messages written to standard error and the contents of the
default −y comment.
- Determine the location of message catalogs for the
processing of LC_MESSAGES.
The standard error shall be used only for diagnostic messages.
Any SCCS files created shall be text files of an unspecified format. During
processing of a file
, a locking z-file
, as described in
, may be created and deleted.
The following exit values shall be returned:
- Successful completion.
- An error occurred.
The following sections are informative.
It is recommended that directories containing SCCS files be writable by the
owner only, and that SCCS files themselves be read-only. The mode of the
directories should allow only the owner to modify SCCS files contained in the
directories. The mode of the SCCS files prevents any modification at all
except by SCCS commands.
The Base Definitions volume of POSIX.1‐2008, Chapter 8
, Section 12.2
, Utility Syntax
Portions of this text are reprinted and reproduced in electronic form from IEEE
Std 1003.1, 2013 Edition, Standard for Information Technology -- Portable
Operating System Interface (POSIX), The Open Group Base Specifications Issue
7, Copyright (C) 2013 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics
Engineers, Inc and The Open Group. (This is POSIX.1-2008 with the 2013
Technical Corrigendum 1 applied.) In the event of any discrepancy between this
version and the original IEEE and The Open Group Standard, the original IEEE
and The Open Group Standard is the referee document. The original Standard can
be obtained online at http://www.unix.org/online.html .
Any typographical or formatting errors that appear in this page are most likely
to have been introduced during the conversion of the source files to man page
format. To report such errors, see