Reference

Reference Manual #


Concepts #

chezmoi evaluates the source state for the current machine and then updates the destination directory, where:

  • The source state declares the desired state of your home directory, including templates and machine-specific configuration.

  • The source directory is where chezmoi stores the source state, by default ~/.local/share/chezmoi.

  • The target state is the source state computed for the current machine.

  • The destination directory is the directory that chezmoi manages, by default your home directory.

  • A target is a file, directory, or symlink in the destination directory.

  • The destination state is the current state of all the targets in the destination directory.

  • The config file contains machine-specific configuration, by default it is ~/.config/chezmoi/chezmoi.toml.


Global command line flags #

Command line flags override any values set in the configuration file.

--color value #

Colorize diffs, value can be on, off, auto, or any boolean-like value recognized by parseBool. The default is auto which will colorize diffs only if the the environment variable $NO_COLOR is not set and stdout is a terminal.

-c, --config filename #

Read the configuration from filename.

--config-format json|toml|yaml #

Assume the configuration file is in the given format. This is only needed if the config filename does not have an extension, for example when it is /dev/stdin.

--debug #

Log information helpful for debugging.

-D, --destination directory #

Use directory as the destination directory.

-n, --dry-run #

Set dry run mode. In dry run mode, the destination directory is never modified. This is most useful in combination with the -v (verbose) flag to print changes that would be made without making them.

--force #

Make changes without prompting.

-h, --help #

Print help.

-k, --keep-going #

Keep going as far as possible after a encountering an error.

--no-pager #

Do not use the pager.

--no-tty #

Do not attempt to get a TTY to read input and passwords. Instead, read them from stdin.

-o, --output filename #

Write the output to filename instead of stdout.

-R, --refresh-externals #

Refresh externals cache. See .chezmoiexternal.<format>.

-S, --source directory #

Use directory as the source directory.

--use-builtin-git value #

Use chezmoi’s builtin git instead of git.command for the init and update commands. value can be on, off, auto, or any boolean-like value recognized by parseBool. The default is auto which will only use the builtin git if git.command cannot be found in $PATH.

-v, --verbose #

Set verbose mode. In verbose mode, chezmoi prints the changes that it is making as approximate shell commands, and any differences in files between the target state and the destination set are printed as unified diffs.

--version #

Print the version of chezmoi, the commit at which it was built, and the build timestamp.


Common command line flags #

The following flags apply to multiple commands where they are relevant.

-f, --format json|yaml #

Set the output format.

-i, --include types #

Only operate on target state entries of type types. types is a comma-separated list of target states (all, dirs, files, remove, scripts, symlinks, and encrypted) and can be excluded by preceding them with a no. For example, --include=dirs,files will cause the command to apply to directories and files only.

-r, --recursive #

Recurse into subdirectories, true by default.

-x, --exclude types #

Exclude target state entries of type types. types is a comma-separated list of target states (all, dirs, files, remove, scripts, symlinks, and encrypted). For example, --exclude=scripts will cause the command to not run scripts and --exclude=encrypted will exclude encrypted files.

Developer command line flags #

The following flags are global but only relevant for developers and debugging.

--cpu-profile filename #

Write a Go CPU profile to filename.

--gops #

Enable the gops agent.


Configuration file #

chezmoi searches for its configuration file according to the XDG Base Directory Specification and supports all formats supported by github.com/spf13/viper, namely JSON, TOML, YAML, macOS property file format, and HCL. The basename of the config file is chezmoi, and the first config file found is used.

In most installations, the config file will be read from ~/.config/chezmoi/chezmoi.<format>, where <format> is one of json, toml, or yaml. The config file can be set explicitly with the --config command line option. By default, the format is detected based on the extension of the config file name, but can be overridden with the --config-format command line option.

Variables #

The following configuration variables are available:

Section Variable Type Default value Description
Top level color string auto Colorize output
data any none Template data
destDir string ~ Destination directory
encryption string none Encryption tool, either age or gpg
format string json Format for data output, either json or yaml
mode string file Mode in target dir, either file or symlink
sourceDir string ~/.local/share/chezmoi Source directory
pager string $PAGER Default pager
umask int from system Umask
useBuiltinGit string auto Use builtin git if git command is not found in $PATH
add templateSymlinks bool false Template symlinks to source and home dirs
age args []string none Extra args to age CLI command
command string age age CLI command
identity string none age identity file
identities []string none age identity files
passphrase bool false Use age passphrase instead of identity
recipient string none age recipient
recipients []string none age recipients
recipientsFile []string none age recipients file
recipientsFiles []string none age recipients files
suffix string .age Suffix appended to age-encrypted files
symmetric bool false Use age symmetric encryption
bitwarden command string bw Bitwarden CLI command
cd args []string none Extra args to shell in cd command
command string none Shell to run in cd command
diff args []string see diff below Extra args to external diff command
command string none External diff command
exclude []string none Entry types to exclude from diff
pager string none Diff-specific pager
docs maxWidth int 80 Maximum width of output
pager string none Docs-specific pager
edit args []string none Extra args to edit command
command string $EDITOR / $VISUAL Edit command
secret command string none Generic secret command
git autoAdd bool false Add changes to the source state after any change
autoCommit bool false Commit changes to the source state after any change
autoPush bool false Push changes to the source state after any change
command string git Source version control system
gopass command string gopass gopass CLI command
gpg args []string none Extra args to GPG CLI command
command string gpg GPG CLI command
recipient string none GPG recipient
suffix string .asc Suffix appended to GPG-encrypted files
symmetric bool false Use symmetric GPG encryption
interpreters extension.args []string none See section on “Scripts on Windows”
extension.command string special See section on “Scripts on Windows”
keepassxc args []string none Extra args to KeePassXC CLI command
command string keepassxc-cli KeePassXC CLI command
database string none KeePassXC database
lastpass command string lpass Lastpass CLI command
merge args []string see merge below Args to 3-way merge command
command string vimdiff 3-way merge command
onepassword cache bool true Enable optional caching provided by op
command string op 1Password CLI command
pass command string pass Pass CLI command
template options []string ["missingkey=error"] Template options
vault command string vault Vault CLI command

Examples #

JSON #

{
    "sourceDir": "/home/user/.dotfiles",
    "git": {
        "autoPush": true
    }
}

TOML #

sourceDir = "/home/user/.dotfiles"
[git]
    autoPush = true

YAML #

sourceDir: /home/user/.dotfiles
git:
    autoPush: true

Source state attributes #

chezmoi stores the source state of files, symbolic links, and directories in regular files and directories in the source directory (~/.local/share/chezmoi by default). This location can be overridden with the -S flag or by giving a value for sourceDir in ~/.config/chezmoi/chezmoi.toml. Directory targets are represented as directories in the source state. All other target types are represented as files in the source state. Some state is encoded in the source names.

The following prefixes and suffixes are special, and are collectively referred to as “attributes”:

Prefix Effect
after_ Run script after updating the destination.
before_ Run script before updating the destination.
create_ Ensure that the file exists, and create it with contents if it does not.
dot_ Rename to use a leading dot, e.g. dot_foo becomes .foo.
empty_ Ensure the file exists, even if is empty. By default, empty files are removed.
encrypted_ Encrypt the file in the source state.
exact_ Remove anything not managed by chezmoi.
executable_ Add executable permissions to the target file.
literal_ Stop parsing prefix attributes.
modify_ Treat the contents as a script that modifies an existing file.
once_ Run script once.
private_ Remove all group and world permissions from the target file or directory.
remove_ Remove the entry if it exists.
run_ Treat the contents as a script to run.
symlink_ Create a symlink instead of a regular file.
Suffix Effect
.literal Stop parsing suffix attributes.
.tmpl Treat the contents of the source file as a template.

Different target types allow different prefixes and suffixes. The order of prefixes is important.

Target type Source type Allowed prefixes in order Allowed suffixes
Directory Directory exact_, private_, dot_ none
Regular file File encrypted_, private_, executable_, dot_ .tmpl
Create file File create_, encrypted_, private_, executable_, dot_ .tmpl
Modify file File modify_, encrypted_, private_, executable_, dot_ .tmpl
Remove File remove_, dot_ none
Script File run_, once_, before_ or after_ .tmpl
Symbolic link File symlink_, dot_, .tmpl

The literal_ prefix and .literal suffix can appear anywhere and stop attribute parsing. This permits filenames that would otherwise conflict with chezmoi’s attributes to be represented.

In addition, if the source file is encrypted, the suffix .age (when age encryption is used) or .asc (when gpg encryption is used) is stripped. These suffixes can be overridden with the age.suffix and gpg.suffix configuration variables.

chezmoi ignores all files and directories in the source directory that begin with a . with the exception of files and directories that begin with .chezmoi.


Target types #

chezmoi will create, update, and delete files, directories, and symbolic links in the destination directory, and run scripts. chezmoi deterministically performs actions in ASCII order of their target name. For example, given a file dot_a, a script run_z, and a directory exact_dot_c, chezmoi will first create .a, create .c, and then execute run_z.


Files #

Files are represented by regular files in the source state. The encrypted_ attribute determines whether the file in the source state is encrypted. The executable_ attribute will set the executable bits when the file is written to the target state, and the private_ attribute will clear all group and world permissions. Files with the .tmpl suffix will be interpreted as templates. If the target contents are empty then the file will be removed, unless it has an empty_ prefix.

Create file #

Files with the create_ prefix will be created in the target state with the contents of the file in the source state if they do not already exist. If the file in the destination state already exists then its contents will be left unchanged.

Modify file #

Files with the modify_ prefix are treated as scripts that modify an existing file. The contents of the existing file (which maybe empty if the existing file does not exist or is empty) are passed to the script’s standard input, and the new contents are read from the scripts standard output.


Remove entry #

Files with the remove_ prefix will cause the corresponding entry (file, directory, or symlink) to be removed in the target state.


Directories #

Directories are represented by regular directories in the source state. The exact_ attribute causes chezmoi to remove any entries in the target state that are not explicitly specified in the source state, and the private_ attribute causes chezmoi to clear all group and world permissions.


Symbolic links are represented by regular files in the source state with the prefix symlink_. The contents of the file will have a trailing newline stripped, and the result be interpreted as the target of the symbolic link. Symbolic links with the .tmpl suffix in the source state are interpreted as templates. If the target of the symbolic link is empty or consists only of whitespace, then the target is removed.


Scripts #

Scripts are represented as regular files in the source state with prefix run_. The file’s contents (after being interpreted as a template if it has a .tmpl suffix) are executed. Scripts are executed on every chezmoi apply, unless they have the once_ attribute, in which case they are only executed when they are first found or when their contents have changed.

Scripts with the before_ attribute are executed before any files, directories, or symlinks are updated. Scripts with the after_ attribute are executed after all files, directories, and symlinks have been updated. Scripts without an before_ or after_ attribute are executed in ASCII order of their target names with respect to files, directories, and symlinks.

Scripts will normally run with their working directory set to their equivalent location in the destination directory. For example, a script in ~/.local/share/chezmoi/dir/run_script will be run with a working directory of ~/dir. If the equivalent location in the destination directory either does not exist or is not a directory, then chezmoi will walk up the script’s directory hierarchy and run the script in the first directory that exists and is a directory.

Scripts on Windows #

The execution of scripts on Windows depends on the script’s file extension. Windows will natively execute scripts with a .bat, .cmd, .com, and .exe extensions. Other extensions require an interpreter, which must be in your %PATH%.

The default script interpreters are:

Extension Command Arguments
.pl perl none
.py python none
.ps1 powershell -NoLogo
.rb ruby none

Script interpreters can be added or overridden with the interpreters.extension section in the configuration file. Note that the leading . is dropped from extension.

For example to change the Python interpreter to C:\Python39\python.exe and add a Tcl/Tk interpreter, include the following in ~/.config/chezmoi/chezmoi.toml:

[interpreters.py]
    command = 'C:\Python39\python.exe'
[interpreters.tcl]
    command = "tclsh"

If the script in the source state is a template (with a .tmpl extension), then chezmoi will strip the .tmpl extension and use the next remaining extension to determine the interpreter to use.


By default, chezmoi will create regular files and directories. Setting mode = "symlink" will make chezmoi behave more like a dotfile manager that uses symlinks by default, i.e. chezmoi apply will make dotfiles symlinks to files in the source directory if the target is a regular file and is not encrypted, executable, private, or a template.


Special files and directories #

All files and directories in the source state whose name begins with . are ignored by default, unless they are one of the special files listed here.


.chezmoi.<format>.tmpl #

If a file called .chezmoi.<format>.tmpl exists then chezmoi init will use it to create an initial config file. format must be one of the the supported config file formats.

.chezmoi.<format>.tmpl examples #

{{ $email := promptString "email" -}}
data:
    email: {{ $email | quote }}

.chezmoidata.<format> #

If a file called .chezmoidata.<format> exists in the source state, it is interpreted as a datasource available in most templates.

.chezmoidata.<format> examples #

If .chezmoidata.toml contains the following (and no variable is overwritten in later stages):

editor = "nvim"
[directions]
	up = "k"
	down = "j"
	right = "l"
	left = "h"

Then the following template:

EDITOR={{ .editor }}
MOVE_UP={{ .directions.up }}
MOVE_DOWN={{ .directions.down }}
MOVE_RIGHT={{ .directions.right }}
MOVE_LEFT={{ .directions.left }}

Will result in:

EDITOR=nvim
MOVE_UP=k
MOVE_DOWN=j
MOVE_RIGHT=l
MOVE_LEFT=h

.chezmoiexternal.<format> #

If a file called .chezmoiexternal.<format> exists in the source state, it is interpreted as a list of external files and archives to be included as if they were in the source state.

.chezmoiexternal.<format> is interpreted as a template. This allows different externals to be included on different machines.

Entries are indexed by target name, and must have a type and a url field. type can be either file or archive. All of the entries parent directories must be defined in the source state. chezmoi will not create parent directories automatically.

The optional boolean encrypted field specifies whether the file or archive is encrypted.

If type is file then the target is a file with the contents of url. The optional boolean field executable may be set, in which case the target file will be executable.

If type is archive then the target is a directory with the contents of the archive at url. The optional boolean field exact may be set, in which case the directory and all subdirectories will be treated as exact directories, i.e. chezmoi apply will remove entries not present in the archive. The optional integer field stripComponents will remove leading path components from the members of archive. The supported archive formats are .tar, .tar.gz, .tgz, .tar.bz2, .tbz2, and .zip.

By default, chezmoi will cache downloaded URLs the first time they are accessed. To force chezmoi to re-download URLs, pass the --refresh-externals flag.

.chezmoiexternal.<format> examples #

[".vim/autoload/plug.vim"]
    type = "file"
    url = "https://raw.githubusercontent.com/junegunn/vim-plug/master/plug.vim"
[".oh-my-zsh"]
    type = "archive"
    url = "https://github.com/ohmyzsh/ohmyzsh/archive/master.tar.gz"
    exact = true
    stripComponents = 1
[".oh-my-zsh/custom/plugins/zsh-syntax-highlighting"]
    type = "archive"
    url = "https://github.com/zsh-users/zsh-syntax-highlighting/archive/master.tar.gz"
    exact = true
    stripComponents = 1

.chezmoiignore #

If a file called .chezmoiignore exists in the source state then it is interpreted as a set of patterns to ignore. Patterns are matched using doublestar.Match and match against the target path, not the source path.

Patterns can be excluded by prefixing them with a ! character. All excludes take priority over all includes.

Comments are introduced with the # character and run until the end of the line.

.chezmoiignore is interpreted as a template. This allows different files to be ignored on different machines.

.chezmoiignore files in subdirectories apply only to that subdirectory.

.chezmoiignore examples #

README.md

*.txt   # ignore *.txt in the target directory
*/*.txt # ignore *.txt in subdirectories of the target directory
backups/** # ignore backups folder in chezmoi directory and all its contents
        # but not in subdirectories of subdirectories;
        # so a/b/c.txt would *not* be ignored
backups/** # ignore all contents of backups folder in chezmoi directory
           # but not backups folder itself

{{- if ne .email "firstname.lastname@company.com" }}
# Ignore .company-directory unless configured with a company email
.company-directory # note that the pattern is not dot_company-directory
{{- end }}

{{- if ne .email "me@home.org }}
.personal-file
{{- end }}

.chezmoiremove #

If a file called .chezmoiremove exists in the source state then it is interpreted as a list of targets to remove. .chezmoiremove is interpreted as a template.


.chezmoitemplates #

If a directory called .chezmoitemplates exists, then all files in this directory are parsed as templates are available as templates with a name equal to the relative path to the .chezmoitemplates directory.

The template action can be used to include these templates in another template. The value of . must be set explicitly if needed, otherwise the template will be executed with nil data.

.chezmoitemplates examples #

Given:

.chezmoitemplates/foo:

{{ if true }}bar{{ end }}

dot_config.tmpl:

{{ template "foo" . }}

The target state of .config will be bar.


.chezmoiversion #

If a file called .chezmoiversion exists, then its contents are interpreted as a semantic version defining the minimum version of chezmoi required to interpret the source state correctly. chezmoi will refuse to interpret the source state if the current version is too old.

.chezmoiversion examples #

1.5.0

Commands #


add target#

Add targets to the source state. If any target is already in the source state, then its source state is replaced with its current state in the destination directory.

--autotemplate #

Automatically generate a template by replacing strings with variable names from the data section of the config file. Longer substitutions occur before shorter ones. This implies the --template option.

-e, --empty #

Set the empty attribute on added files.

-f, --force #

Add targets, even if doing so would cause a source template to be overwritten.

--follow #

If the last part of a target is a symlink, add the target of the symlink instead of the symlink itself.

--exact #

Set the exact attribute on added directories.

-i, --include types #

Only add entries of type types.

-p, --prompt #

Interactively prompt before adding each file.

-r, --recursive #

Recursively add all files, directories, and symlinks.

-T, --template #

Set the template attribute on added files and symlinks.

When adding symlink to an absolute path in the source directory or destination directory, create a symlink template with .chezmoi.sourceDir or .chezmoi.homeDir. This is useful for creating portable absolute symlinks.

add examples #

$ chezmoi add ~/.bashrc
$ chezmoi add ~/.gitconfig --template
$ chezmoi add ~/.vim --recursive
$ chezmoi add ~/.oh-my-zsh --exact --recursive

apply [target…] #

Ensure that target… are in the target state, updating them if necessary. If no targets are specified, the state of all targets are ensured. If a target has been modified since chezmoi last wrote it then the user will be prompted if they want to overwrite the file.

-i, --include types #

Only add entries of type types.

--source-path #

Specify targets by source path, rather than target path. This is useful for applying changes after editing.

apply examples #

$ chezmoi apply
$ chezmoi apply --dry-run --verbose
$ chezmoi apply ~/.bashrc

archive #

Generate an archive of the target state. This can be piped into tar to inspect the target state.

-f, --format tar|zip #

Write the archive in format.

-i, --include types #

Only include entries of type types.

-z, --gzip #

Compress the output with gzip.

archive examples #

$ chezmoi archive | tar tvf -
$ chezmoi archive --output=dotfiles.tar
$ chezmoi archive --format=zip --output=dotfiles.zip

cat target#

Write the target contents of targets to stdout. targets must be files, scripts, or symlinks. For files, the target file contents are written. For scripts, the script’s contents are written. For symlinks, the target target is written.

cat examples #

$ chezmoi cat ~/.bashrc

cd #

Launch a shell in the source directory. chezmoi will launch the command set by the cd.command configuration variable with any extra arguments specified by cd.args. If this is not set, chezmoi will attempt to detect your shell and will finally fall back to an OS-specific default.

cd examples #

$ chezmoi cd

chattr attributes target#

Change the attributes of targets. attributes specifies which attributes to modify. Add attributes by specifying them or their abbreviations directly, optionally prefixed with a plus sign (+). Remove attributes by prefixing them or their attributes with the string no or a minus sign (-). The available attributes and their abbreviations are:

Attribute Abbreviation
after a
before b
empty e
encrypted none
exact none
executable x
once o
private p
template t

Multiple attributes modifications may be specified by separating them with a comma (,). If you use the -attr form then you must put attributes after a -- to prevent chezmoi from interpreting -*attr as an option.

chattr examples #

$ chezmoi chattr template ~/.bashrc
$ chezmoi chattr noempty ~/.profile
$ chezmoi chattr private,template ~/.netrc
$ chezmoi chattr -- -x ~/.zshrc

completion shell #

Generate shell completion code for the specified shell (bash, fish, powershell, or zsh).

completion examples #

$ chezmoi completion bash
$ chezmoi completion fish --output=~/.config/fish/completions/chezmoi.fish

data #

Write the computed template data to stdout.

-f, --format json|yaml #

Set the output format.

data examples #

$ chezmoi data
$ chezmoi data --format=yaml

diff [target…] #

Print the difference between the target state and the destination state for targets. If no targets are specified, print the differences for all targets.

If a diff.pager command is set in the configuration file then the output will be piped into it.

If diff.command is set then it will be invoked to show individual file differences with diff.args passed as arguments. Each element of diff.args is interpreted as a template with the variables .Destination and .Target available corresponding to the path of the file in the source and target state respectively. The default value of diff.args is ["{{ .Destination }}", "{{ .Target }}"]. If diff.args does not contain any template arguments then {{ .Destination }} and {{ .Target }} will be appended automatically.

--pager pager #

Pager to use for output.

--use-builtin-diff #

Use chezmoi’s builtin diff, even if the diff.command configuration variable is set.

diff examples #

$ chezmoi diff
$ chezmoi diff ~/.bashrc

docs [regexp] #

Print the documentation page matching the regular expression regexp. Matching is case insensitive. If no pattern is given, print REFERENCE.md.

--pager pager #

Pager to use for output.

docs examples #

$ chezmoi docs
$ chezmoi docs faq
$ chezmoi docs howto

doctor #

Check for potential problems.

doctor examples #

$ chezmoi doctor

dump [target…] #

Dump the target state of targets. If no targets are specified, then the entire target state.

-f, --format json|yaml #

Set the output format.

-i, --include types #

Only include entries of type types.

dump examples #

$ chezmoi dump ~/.bashrc
$ chezmoi dump --format=yaml

edit [target…] #

Edit the source state of targets, which must be files or symlinks. If no targets are given the the source directory itself is opened.

The editor used is the first non-empty string of the edit.command configuration variable, the $VISUAL environment variable, the $EDITOR environment variable. If none are set then chezmoi falls back to notepad.exe on Windows systems and vi on non-Windows systems.

When the edit.command configuration variable is used, extra arguments can be passed to the editor with the editor.args configuration variable.

-a, --apply #

Apply target immediately after editing. Ignored if there are no targets.

edit examples #

$ chezmoi edit ~/.bashrc
$ chezmoi edit ~/.bashrc --apply
$ chezmoi edit

edit-config #

Edit the configuration file.

edit-config examples #

$ chezmoi edit-config

execute-template [template…] #

Execute templates. This is useful for testing templates or for calling chezmoi from other scripts. templates are interpreted as literal templates, with no whitespace added to the output between arguments. If no templates are specified, the template is read from stdin.

--init, -i #

Include simulated functions only available during chezmoi init.

--promptBool pairs #

Simulate the promptBool function with a function that returns values from pairs. pairs is a comma-separated list of prompt=value pairs. If promptBool is called with a prompt that does not match any of pairs, then it returns false.

--promptInt pairs #

Simulate the promptInt function with a function that returns values from pairs. pairs is a comma-separated list of prompt=value pairs. If promptInt is called with a prompt that does not match any of pairs, then it returns zero.

--promptString, -p pairs #

Simulate the promptString function with a function that returns values from pairs. pairs is a comma-separated list of prompt=value pairs. If promptString is called with a prompt that does not match any of pairs, then it returns prompt unchanged.

--stdinisatty bool #

Simulate the stdinIsATTY function by returning bool.

execute-template examples #

$ chezmoi execute-template '{{ .chezmoi.sourceDir }}'
$ chezmoi execute-template '{{ .chezmoi.os }}' / '{{ .chezmoi.arch }}'
$ echo '{{ .chezmoi | toJson }}' | chezmoi execute-template
$ chezmoi execute-template --init --promptString email=me@home.org < ~/.local/share/chezmoi/.chezmoi.toml.tmpl

forget targets #

Remove targets from the source state, i.e. stop managing them.

forget examples #

$ chezmoi forget ~/.bashrc

git [arg…] #

Run git args in the source directory. Note that flags in arguments must occur after -- to prevent chezmoi from interpreting them.

git examples #

$ chezmoi git add .
$ chezmoi git add dot_gitconfig
$ chezmoi git -- commit -m "Add .gitconfig"

help [command…] #

Print the help associated with command, or general help if no command is given.


init [repo] #

Setup the source directory, generate the config file, and optionally update the destination directory to match the target state. repo is expanded to a full git repo URL, using HTTPS by default, or SSH if the --ssh option is specified, according to the following patterns:

Pattern HTTPS Repo SSH repo
user https://github.com/user/dotfiles.git git@github.com:user/dotfiles.git
user/repo https://github.com/user/repo.git git@github.com:user/repo.git
site/user/repo https://site/user/repo.git git@site:user/repo.git
~sr.ht/user https://git.sr.ht/~user/dotfiles git@git.sr.ht:~user/dotfiles.git
~sr.ht/user/repo https://git.sr.ht/~user/repo git@git.sr.ht:~/user/repo.git

First, if the source directory is not already contain a repository, then if repo is given it is checked out into the source directory, otherwise a new repository is initialized in the source directory.

Second, if a file called .chezmoi.<format>.tmpl exists, where <format> is one of the supported file formats (e.g. json, toml, or yaml) then a new configuration file is created using that file as a template.

Then, if the --apply flag is passed, chezmoi apply is run.

Then, if the --purge flag is passed, chezmoi will remove the source directory and its config directory.

Finally, if the --purge-binary is passed, chezmoi will attempt to remove its own binary.

--apply #

Run chezmoi apply after checking out the repo and creating the config file.

--branch branch #

Check out branch instead of the default branch.

--config-path path #

Write the generated config file to path instead of the default location.

--data bool #

Include existing template data when creating the config file. This defaults to true. Set this to false to simulate creating the config file with no existing template data.

--depth depth #

Clone the repo with depth depth.

--one-shot #

--one-shot is the equivalent of --apply, --depth=1, --force, --purge, and --purge-binary. It attempts to install your dotfiles with chezmoi and then remove all traces of chezmoi from the system. This is useful for setting up temporary environments (e.g. Docker containers).

--purge #

Remove the source and config directories after applying.

--purge-binary #

Attempt to remove the chezmoi binary after applying.

--ssh #

Guess an SSH repo URL instead of an HTTPS repo.

init examples #

$ chezmoi init user
$ chezmoi init user --apply
$ chezmoi init user --apply --purge
$ chezmoi init user/dots
$ chezmoi init gitlab.com/user

import filename #

Import the source state from an archive file in to a directory in the source state. This is primarily used to make subdirectories of your home directory exactly match the contents of a downloaded archive. You will generally always want to set the --destination, --exact, and --remove-destination flags.

The supported archive formats are .tar, .tar.gz, .tgz, .tar.bz2, .tbz2, and .zip.

--destination directory #

Set the destination (in the source state) where the archive will be imported.

--exact #

Set the exact attribute on all imported directories.

-r, --remove-destination #

Remove destination (in the source state) before importing.

--strip-components n #

Strip n leading components from paths.

import examples #

$ curl -s -L -o ${TMPDIR}/oh-my-zsh-master.tar.gz https://github.com/ohmyzsh/ohmyzsh/archive/master.tar.gz
$ mkdir -p $(chezmoi source-path)/dot_oh-my-zsh
$ chezmoi import --strip-components 1 --destination ~/.oh-my-zsh ${TMPDIR}/oh-my-zsh-master.tar.gz

manage targets #

manage is an alias for add for symmetry with unmanage.


managed #

List all managed entries in the destination directory in alphabetical order.

-i, --include types #

Only include entries of type types.

managed examples #

$ chezmoi managed
$ chezmoi managed --include=files
$ chezmoi managed --include=files,symlinks
$ chezmoi managed -i d
$ chezmoi managed -i d,f

merge target#

Perform a three-way merge between the destination state, the target state, and the source state for each target. The merge tool is defined by the merge.command configuration variable, and defaults to vimdiff. If multiple targets are specified the merge tool is invoked for each target. If the target state cannot be computed (for example if source is a template containing errors or an encrypted file that cannot be decrypted) a two-way merge is performed instead.

The order of arguments to merge.command is controlled by merge.args. Each argument is interpreted as a template with the variables .Destination, .Source, and .Target available corresponding to the path of the file in the destination state, the source state, and the target state respectively. The default value of merge.args is ["{{ .Destination }}", "{{ .Source }}", "{{.Target }}"]. If merge.args does not contain any template arguments then {{.Destination }}, {{ .Source }}, and {{ .Target }} will be appended automatically.

merge examples #

$ chezmoi merge ~/.bashrc

purge #

Remove chezmoi’s configuration, state, and source directory, but leave the target state intact.

-f, --force #

Remove without prompting.

purge examples #

$ chezmoi purge
$ chezmoi purge --force

remove targets #

Remove targets from both the source state and the destination directory.

-f, --force #

Remove without prompting.


re-add #

Re-add all modified files in the target state. chezmoi will not overwrite templates, and all entries that are not files are ignored.

re-add examples #

$ chezmoi re-add

rm targets #

rm is an alias for remove.


secret #

Run a secret manager’s CLI, passing any extra arguments to the secret manager’s CLI. This is primarily for verifying chezmoi’s integration with your secret manager. Normally you would use template functions to retrieve secrets. Note that if you want to pass flags to the secret manager’s CLI you will need to separate them with -- to prevent chezmoi from interpreting them.

To get a full list of available commands run:

$ chezmoi secret help

secret examples #

$ chezmoi secret keyring set --service=service --user=user --value=password
$ chezmoi secret keyring get --service=service --user=user

source-path [target…] #

Print the path to each target’s source state. If no targets are specified then print the source directory.

source-path examples #

$ chezmoi source-path
$ chezmoi source-path ~/.bashrc

state #

Manipulate the persistent state.

state examples #

$ chezmoi state data
$ chezmoi state delete --bucket=bucket --key=key
$ chezmoi state dump
$ chezmoi state get --bucket=bucket --key=key
$ chezmoi state set --bucket=bucket --key=key --value=value
$ chezmoi state reset

status #

Print the status of the files and scripts managed by chezmoi in a format similar to git status.

The first column of output indicates the difference between the last state written by chezmoi and the actual state. The second column indicates the difference between the actual state and the target state.

-i, --include types #

Only include entries of type types.

status examples #

$ chezmoi status

unmanage target#

unmanage is an alias for forget for symmetry with manage.

unmanaged #

List all unmanaged files in the destination directory.

unmanaged examples #

$ chezmoi unmanaged

update #

Pull changes from the source repo and apply any changes.

-i, --include types #

Only update entries of type types.

update examples #

$ chezmoi update

upgrade #

Upgrade chezmoi by downloading and installing the latest released version. This will call the GitHub API to determine if there is a new version of chezmoi available, and if so, download and attempt to install it in the same way as chezmoi was previously installed.

If the any of the $CHEZMOI_GITHUB_ACCESS_TOKEN, $GITHUB_ACCESS_TOKEN, or $GITHUB_TOKEN environment variables are set, then the first value found will be used to authenticate requests to the GitHub API, otherwise unauthenticated requests are used which are subject to stricter rate limiting. Unauthenticated requests should be sufficient for most cases.


verify [target…] #

Verify that all targets match their target state. chezmoi exits with code 0 (success) if all targets match their target state, or 1 (failure) otherwise. If no targets are specified then all targets are checked.

-i, --include types #

Only include entries of type types.

verify examples #

$ chezmoi verify
$ chezmoi verify ~/.bashrc

Editor configuration #

The edit and edit-config commands use the editor specified by the VISUAL environment variable, the $EDITOR environment variable, or vi, whichever is specified first.


Umask configuration #

By default, chezmoi uses your current umask as set by your operating system and shell. chezmoi only stores crude permissions in its source state, namely in the executable and private attributes, corresponding to the umasks of 0o111 and 0o077 respectively.

For machine-specific control of umask, set the umask configuration variable in chezmoi’s configuration file, for example:

umask = 0o22

Template execution #

chezmoi executes templates using text/template. The result is treated differently depending on whether the target is a file or a symlink.

If target is a file, then:

  • If the result is an empty string, then the file is removed.
  • Otherwise, the target file contents are result.

If the target is a symlink, then:

  • Leading and trailing whitespace are stripped from the result.
  • If the result is an empty string, then the symlink is removed.
  • Otherwise, the target symlink target is the result.

chezmoi executes templates using text/template’s missingkey=error option, which means that misspelled or missing keys will raise an error. This can be overridden by setting a list of options in the configuration file, for example:

[template]
    options = ["missingkey=zero"]

For a full list of options, see Template.Option.


Template variables #

chezmoi provides the following automatically-populated variables:

Variable Value
.chezmoi.arch Architecture, e.g. amd64, arm, etc. as returned by runtime.GOARCH.
.chezmoi.fqdnHostname The fully-qualified domain name hostname of the machine chezmoi is running on.
.chezmoi.group The group of the user running chezmoi.
.chezmoi.homeDir The home directory of the user running chezmoi.
.chezmoi.hostname The hostname of the machine chezmoi is running on, up to the first ..
.chezmoi.kernel Contains information from /proc/sys/kernel. Linux only, useful for detecting specific kernels (i.e. Microsoft’s WSL kernel).
.chezmoi.os Operating system, e.g. darwin, linux, etc. as returned by runtime.GOOS.
.chezmoi.osRelease The information from /etc/os-release, Linux only, run chezmoi data to see its output.
.chezmoi.sourceDir The source directory.
.chezmoi.sourceFile The path of the template relative to the source directory.
.chezmoi.username The username of the user running chezmoi.
.chezmoi.version The version of chezmoi.

Additional variables can be defined in the config file in the data section. Variable names must consist of a letter and be followed by zero or more letters and/or digits.


Template functions #

All standard text/template and text template functions from sprig are included. chezmoi provides some additional functions.


bitwarden [arg…] #

bitwarden returns structured data retrieved from Bitwarden using the Bitwarden CLI (bw). args are passed to bw get unchanged and the output from bw get is parsed as JSON. The output from bw get is cached so calling bitwarden multiple times with the same arguments will only invoke bw once.

bitwarden examples #

username = {{ (bitwarden "item" "<itemid>").login.username }}
password = {{ (bitwarden "item" "<itemid>").login.password }}

bitwardenAttachment filename itemid #

bitwardenAttachment returns a document from Bitwarden using the Bitwarden CLI (bw). filename and itemid is passed to bw get attachment <filename> --itemid <itemid> and the output from bw is returned. The output from bw is cached so calling bitwardenAttachment multiple times with the same filename and itemid will only invoke bw once.

bitwardenAttachment examples #

{{- (bitwardenAttachment "<filename>" "<itemid>") -}}

bitwardenFields [arg…] #

bitwardenFields returns structured data retrieved from Bitwarden using the Bitwarden CLI (bw). args are passed to bw get unchanged, the output from bw get is parsed as JSON, and elements of fields are returned as a map indexed by each field’s name. For example, given the output from bw get:

{
    "object": "item",
    "id": "bf22e4b4-ae4a-4d1c-8c98-ac620004b628",
    "organizationId": null,
    "folderId": null,
    "type": 1,
    "name": "example.com",
    "notes": null,
    "favorite": false,
    "fields": [
        {
            "name": "text",
            "value": "text-value",
            "type": 0
        },
        {
            "name": "hidden",
            "value": "hidden-value",
            "type": 1
        }
    ],
    "login": {
        "username": "username-value",
        "password": "password-value",
        "totp": null,
        "passwordRevisionDate": null
    },
    "collectionIds": [],
    "revisionDate": "2020-10-28T00:21:02.690Z"
}

the return value will be the map

{
    "hidden": {
        "name": "hidden",
        "type": 1,
        "value": "hidden-value"
    },
    "token": {
        "name": "token",
        "type": 0,
        "value": "token-value"
    }
}

The output from bw get is cached so calling bitwarden multiple times with the same arguments will only invoke bw get once.

bitwardenFields examples #

{{ (bitwardenFields "item" "<itemid>").token.value }}

gitHubKeys user #

gitHubKeys returns user’s public SSH keys from GitHub using the GitHub API. The returned value is a slice of structs with .ID and .Key fields.

WARNING if you use this function to populate your ~/.ssh/authorized_keys file then you potentially open SSH access to anyone who is able to modify or add to your GitHub public SSH keys, possibly including certain GitHub employees. You should not use this function on publicly-accessible machines and should always verify that no unwanted keys have been added, for example by using the -v / --verbose option when running chezmoi apply or chezmoi update.

By default, an anonymous GitHub API request will be made, which is subject to GitHub’s rate limits (currently 60 requests per hour per source IP address). If any of the environment variables $CHEZMOI_GITHUB_ACCESS_TOKEN, $GITHUB_ACCESS_TOKEN, or $GITHUB_TOKEN are found, then the first one found will be used to authenticate the GitHub API request, with a higher rate limit (currently 5,000 requests per hour per user).

In practice, GitHub API rate limits are high enough that you should never need to set a token, unless you are sharing a source IP address with many other GitHub users. If needed, the GitHub documentation describes how to create a personal access token.

gitHubKeys examples #

{{ range (gitHubKeys "user") }}
{{- .Key }}
{{ end }}

gopass gopass-name #

gopass returns passwords stored in gopass using the gopass CLI (gopass). gopass-name is passed to gopass show --password <gopass-name> and the first line of the output of gopass is returned with the trailing newline stripped. The output from gopass is cached so calling gopass multiple times with the same gopass-name will only invoke gopass once.

gopass examples #

{{ gopass "<pass-name>" }}

gopassRaw gopass-name #

gopass returns passwords stored in gopass using the gopass CLI (gopass). gopass-name is passed to gopass show <gopass-name> and output of gopass is returned. The output from gopassRaw is cached so calling gopassRaw multiple times with the same gopass-name will only invoke gopass once.


include filename #

include returns the literal contents of the file named *filename*. Relative paths are interpreted relative to the source directory.


ioreg #

On macOS, ioreg returns the structured output of the ioreg -a -l command, which includes detailed information about the I/O Kit registry.

On non-macOS operating systems, ioreg returns nil.

The output from ioreg is cached so multiple calls to the ioreg function will only execute the ioreg -a -l command once.

ioreg examples #

{{ if (eq .chezmoi.os "darwin") }}
{{ $serialNumber := index ioreg "IORegistryEntryChildren" 0 "IOPlatformSerialNumber" }}
{{ end }}

joinPath element#

joinPath joins any number of path elements into a single path, separating them with the OS-specific path separator. Empty elements are ignored. The result is cleaned. If the argument list is empty or all its elements are empty, joinPath returns an empty string. On Windows, the result will only be a UNC path if the first non-empty element is a UNC path.

joinPath examples #

{{ joinPath .chezmoi.homeDir ".zshrc" }}

keepassxc entry #

keepassxc returns structured data retrieved from a KeePassXC database using the KeePassXC CLI (keepassxc-cli). The database is configured by setting keepassxc.database in the configuration file. database and entry are passed to keepassxc-cli show. You will be prompted for the database password the first time keepassxc-cli is run, and the password is cached, in plain text, in memory until chezmoi terminates. The output from keepassxc-cli is parsed into key-value pairs and cached so calling keepassxc multiple times with the same entry will only invoke keepassxc-cli once.

keepassxc examples #

username = {{ (keepassxc "example.com").UserName }}
password = {{ (keepassxc "example.com").Password }}

keepassxcAttribute entry attribute #

keepassxcAttribute returns the attribute attribute of entry using keepassxc-cli, with any leading or trailing whitespace removed. It behaves identically to the keepassxc function in terms of configuration, password prompting, password storage, and result caching.

keepassxcAttribute examples #

{{ keepassxcAttribute "SSH Key" "private-key" }}

keyring service user #

keyring retrieves the value associated with service and user from the user’s keyring.

OS Keyring
macOS Keychain
Linux GNOME Keyring
Windows Windows Credentials Manager

keyring examples #

[github]
    user = {{ .github.user | quote }}
    token = {{ keyring "github" .github.user | quote }}

lastpass id #

lastpass returns structured data from LastPass using the LastPass CLI (lpass). id is passed to lpass show --json <id> and the output from lpass is parsed as JSON. In addition, the note field, if present, is further parsed as colon-separated key-value pairs. The structured data is an array so typically the index function is used to extract the first item. The output from lastpass is cached so calling lastpass multiple times with the same id will only invoke lpass once.

lastpass examples #

githubPassword = {{ (index (lastpass "GitHub") 0).password | quote }}
{{ (index (lastpass "SSH") 0).note.privateKey }}

lastpassRaw id #

lastpassRaw returns structured data from LastPass using the LastPass CLI (lpass). It behaves identically to the lastpass function, except that no further parsing is done on the note field.

lastpassRaw examples #

{{ (index (lastpassRaw "SSH Private Key") 0).note }}

lookPath file #

lookPath searches for an executable named file in the directories named by the PATH environment variable. If file contains a slash, it is tried directly and the PATH is not consulted. The result may be an absolute path or a path relative to the current directory. If file is not found, lookPath returns an empty string.

lookPath is not hermetic: its return value depends on the state of the environment and the filesystem at the moment the template is executed. Exercise caution when using it in your templates.

lookPath examples #

{{ if lookPath "diff-so-fancy" }}
# diff-so-fancy is in $PATH
{{ end }}

mozillaInstallHash path #

mozillaInstallHash returns the Mozilla install hash for path. This is a convenience function to assist the management of Firefox profiles.


onepassword uuid [vault-uuid [account-name]] #

onepassword returns structured data from 1Password using the 1Password CLI (op). uuid is passed to op get item <uuid> and the output from op is parsed as JSON. The output from op is cached so calling onepassword multiple times with the same uuid will only invoke op once. If the optional vault-uuid is supplied, it will be passed along to the op get call, which can significantly improve performance. If the optional account-name is supplied, it will be passed along to the op get call, which will help it look in the right account, in case you have multiple accounts (eg. personal and work accounts).

onepassword examples #

{{ (onepassword "<uuid>").details.password }}
{{ (onepassword "<uuid>" "<vault-uuid>").details.password }}
{{ (onepassword "<uuid>" "<vault-uuid>" "<account-name>").details.password }}
{{ (onepassword "<uuid>" "" "<account-name>").details.password }}

onepasswordDocument uuid [vault-uuid [account-name]] #

onepassword returns a document from 1Password using the 1Password CLI (op). uuid is passed to op get document <uuid> and the output from op is returned. The output from op is cached so calling onepasswordDocument multiple times with the same uuid will only invoke op once. If the optional vault-uuid is supplied, it will be passed along to the op get call, which can significantly improve performance. If the optional account-name is supplied, it will be passed along to the op get call, which will help it look in the right account, in case you have multiple accounts (eg. personal and work accounts).

onepasswordDocument examples #

{{- onepasswordDocument "<uuid>" -}}
{{- onepasswordDocument "<uuid>" "<vault-uuid>" -}}
{{- onepasswordDocument "<uuid>" "<vault-uuid>" "<account-name>" -}}
{{- onepasswordDocument "<uuid>" "" "<account-name>" -}}

onepasswordDetailsFields uuid [vault-uuid [account-name]] #

onepasswordDetailsFields returns structured data from 1Password using the 1Password CLI (op). uuid is passed to op get item <uuid>, the output from op is parsed as JSON, and elements of details.fields are returned as a map indexed by each field’s designation. For example, give the output from op:

{
    "uuid": "<uuid>",
    "details": {
        "fields": [
            {
                "designation": "username",
                "name": "username",
                "type": "T",
                "value": "exampleuser"
            },
            {
                "designation": "password",
                "name": "password",
                "type": "P",
                "value": "examplepassword"
            }
        ]
    }
}

the return value will be the map:

{
    "username": {
        "designation": "username",
        "name": "username",
        "type": "T",
        "value": "exampleuser"
    },
    "password": {
        "designation": "password",
        "name": "password",
        "type": "P",
        "value": "examplepassword"
    }
}

The output from op is cached so calling onepasswordDetailsFields multiple times with the same uuid will only invoke op once. If the optional vault-uuid is supplied, it will be passed along to the op get call, which can significantly improve performance. If the optional account-name is supplied, it will be passed along to the op get call, which will help it look in the right account, in case you have multiple accounts (eg. personal and work accounts).

onepasswordDetailsFields examples #

{{ (onepasswordDetailsFields "<uuid>").password.value }}
{{ (onepasswordDetailsFields "<uuid>" "<vault-uuid>").password.value }}
{{ (onepasswordDetailsFields "<uuid>" "<vault-uuid>" "<account-name>").password.value }}
{{ (onepasswordDetailsFields "<uuid>" "" "<account-name>").password.value }}

onepasswordItemFields uuid [vault-uuid [account-name]] #

onepasswordItemFields returns structured data from 1Password using the 1Password CLI (op). uuid is passed to op get item <uuid>, the output from op is parsed as JSON, and each element of details.sections are iterated over and any fields are returned as a map indexed by each field’s n. For example, give the output from op:

{
  "uuid": "<uuid>",
  "details": {
    "sections": [
      {
        "name": "linked items",
        "title": "Related Items"
      },
      {
        "fields": [
          {
            "k": "string",
            "n": "D4328E0846D2461E8E455D7A07B93397",
            "t": "exampleLabel",
            "v": "exampleValue"
          }
        ],
        "name": "Section_20E0BD380789477D8904F830BFE8A121",
        "title": ""
      }
    ]
  },
}

the return value will be the map:

{
    "exampleLabel": {
        "k": "string",
        "n": "D4328E0846D2461E8E455D7A07B93397",
        "t": "exampleLabel",
        "v": "exampleValue"
    }
}

output name [arg…] #

output returns the output of executing the command name with args. If executing the command returns an error then template execution exits with an error. The execution occurs every time that the template is executed. It is the user’s responsibility to ensure that executing the command is both idempotent and fast.

output examples #

current-context: {{ output "kubectl" "config" "current-context" | trim }}

pass pass-name #

pass returns passwords stored in pass using the pass CLI (pass). pass-name is passed to pass show <pass-name> and the first line of the output of pass is returned with the trailing newline stripped. The output from pass is cached so calling pass multiple times with the same pass-name will only invoke pass once.

pass examples #

{{ pass "<pass-name>" }}

passRaw pass-name #

passRaw returns passwords stored in pass using the pass CLI (pass). pass-name is passed to pass show <pass-name> and the output is returned. The output from pass is cached so calling passRaw multiple times with the same pass-name will only invoke pass once.


promptBool prompt #

promptBool prompts the user with prompt and returns the user’s response with interpreted as a boolean. It is only available when generating the initial config file. The user’s response is interpreted as follows (case insensitive):

Response Result
1, on, t, true, y, yes true
0, off, f, false, n, no false

promptInt prompt #

promptInt prompts the user with prompt and returns the user’s response with interpreted as an integer. It is only available when generating the initial config file.


promptString prompt #

promptString prompts the user with prompt and returns the user’s response with all leading and trailing spaces stripped. It is only available when generating the initial config file.

promptString examples #

{{ $email := promptString "email" -}}
[data]
    email = {{ $email | quote }}

secret [arg…] #

secret returns the output of the generic secret command defined by the secret.command configuration variable with args with leading and trailing whitespace removed. The output is cached so multiple calls to secret with the same args will only invoke the generic secret command once.


secretJSON [arg…] #

secretJSON returns structured data from the generic secret command defined by the secret.command configuration variable with args. The output is parsed as JSON. The output is cached so multiple calls to secret with the same args will only invoke the generic secret command once.


stat name #

stat runs stat(2) on name. If name exists it returns structured data. If name does not exist then it returns a false value. If stat(2) returns any other error then it raises an error. The structured value returned if name exists contains the fields name, size, mode, perm, modTime, and isDir.

stat is not hermetic: its return value depends on the state of the filesystem at the moment the template is executed. Exercise caution when using it in your templates.

stat examples #

{{ if stat (joinPath .chezmoi.homeDir ".pyenv") }}
# ~/.pyenv exists
{{ end }}

stdinIsATTY #

stdinIsATTY returns true if chezmoi’s standard input is a TTY. It is only available when generating the initial config file. It is primarily useful for determining whether prompt* functions should be called or default values be used.

stdinIsATTY examples #

{{ $email := "" }}
{{ if stdinIsATTY }}
{{   $email = promptString "email" }}
{{ else }}
{{   $email = "user@example.com" }}
{{ end }}

vault key #

vault returns structured data from Vault using the Vault CLI (vault). key is passed to vault kv get -format=json <key> and the output from vault is parsed as JSON. The output from vault is cached so calling vault multiple times with the same key will only invoke vault once.

vault examples #

{{ (vault "<key>").data.data.password }}

writeToStdout string#

writeToStdout writes each string to stdout. It is only available when generating the initial config file.

writeToStdout examples #

{{- writeToStdout "Hello, world\n" -}}