MirBSD manpage: mtree(8)

MTREE(8)                 BSD System Manager's Manual                  MTREE(8)


     mtree - map a directory hierarchy


     mtree [-cdeilnqrtUux] [-f spec] [-K keywords] [-k keywords] [-p path]
           [-s seed]


     The utility mtree compares the file hierarchy rooted in the current
     directory against a specification read from the standard input. Messages
     are written to the standard output for any files whose characteristics do
     not match the specification, or which are missing from either the file
     hierarchy or the specification. For an explanation of the directory
     hierarchy, see hier(7).

     The options are as follows:

     -c      Print a specification for the file hierarchy to the standard out-

     -d      Ignore everything except directory type files.

     -e      Don't complain about files that are in the file hierarchy, but
             not in the specification.

     -f spec
             Read the specification from file spec, instead of from the stan-
             dard input.

     -i      Indents the output 4 spaces each time a directory level is des-
             cended when creating a specification with the -c option. This
             does not affect either the /set statements or the comment before
             each directory. It does however affect the comment before the
             close of each directory.

     -K keywords
             Add the specified (whitespace or comma separated) keywords to the
             current set of keywords.

     -k keywords
             Use the "type" keyword plus the specified (whitespace or comma
             separated) keywords instead of the current set of keywords.

     -l      Do "loose" permissions checks, in which more stringent permis-
             sions will match less stringent ones. For example, a file marked
             mode 0444 will pass a check for mode 0644. "Loose" checks apply
             only to read, write and execute permissions - in particular, if
             other bits like the sticky bit or suid/sgid bits are set either
             in the specification or the file, exact checking will be per-
             formed. This flag may not be set at the same time as the -u or -U

     -n      Do not emit pathname comments when creating a specification. Nor-
             mally a comment is emitted before each directory and before the
             close of that directory when using the -c option.

     -p path
             Use the file hierarchy rooted in path, instead of the current

     -q      Quiet mode. Do not complain when a "missing" directory cannot be
             created because it already exists. This occurs when the directory
             is a symbolic link.

     -r      Remove any files in the file hierarchy that are not described in
             the specification.

     -s seed
             Display a single checksum to the standard error output that
             represents all of the files for which the keyword cksum was
             specified. The checksum is seeded with the specified value.

     -t      If a file's timestamp is different from the specification,
             "touch" it to match the specification (and list as modified).

     -U      Modify the owner, group, and permissions of existing files to
             match the specification and create any missing directories. User,
             group, and permissions must all be specified for missing direc-
             tories to be created. Exit with a status of 0 on success, 1 if
             any error occurred; a mismatch is not considered an error if it
             was corrected.

     -u      Same as the -U option except a status of 2 is returned if the
             file hierarchy did not match the specification.

     -x      Don't descend below mount points in the file hierarchy.

     Specifications are mostly composed of "keywords" (i.e., strings that
     specify values relating to files). No keywords have default values, and
     if a keyword has no value set, no checks based on it are performed.

     Currently supported keywords are as follows:

     cksum       The checksum of the file using the default algorithm speci-
                 fied by the cksum(1) utility.

     flags       The current file's flags (whitespace or comma separated) in
                 symbolic form as specified by chflags(1). The string "none"
                 may be used to indicate that no flags should be set on the

     gid         The file group as a numeric value.

     gname       The file group as a symbolic name.

     ignore      Ignore any file hierarchy below this file.

     md5digest   The MD5 message digest of the file.

     mode        The current file's permissions as a numeric (octal) or sym-
                 bolic value.

     nlink       The number of hard links the file is expected to have.

     nochange    Do not change the attributes (owner, group, mode, etc) on a
                 file or directory.

     optional    The file is optional; don't complain about the file if it's
                 not in the file hierarchy.

                 The RIPEMD-160 message digest of the file.

     sha1digest  The SHA-1 message digest of the file.

     uid         The file owner as a numeric value.

     uname       The file owner as a symbolic name.

     size        The size, in bytes, of the file.

     link        The file the symbolic link is expected to reference.

     time        The last modification time of the file.

     type        The type of the file; may be set to any one of the following:

                 block       block special device
                 char        character special device
                 dir         directory
                 fifo        FIFO
                 file        regular file
                 link        symbolic link
                 socket      socket

     The default set of keywords are gid, mode, nlink, size, link, time, and

     There are four types of lines in a specification.

     The first type of line sets a global value for a keyword, and consists of
     the string "/set" followed by whitespace, followed by sets of
     keyword/value pairs, separated by whitespace. Keyword/value pairs consist
     of a keyword, followed by an equals sign ('='), followed by a value,
     without whitespace characters. Once a keyword has been set, its value
     remains unchanged until either reset or unset.

     The second type of line unsets keywords and consists of the string
     "/unset", followed by whitespace, followed by one or more keywords,
     separated by whitespace.

     The third type of line is a file specification and consists of a file
     name, followed by whitespace, followed by zero or more whitespace
     separated keyword/value pairs. The file name may be preceded by whi-
     tespace characters. The file name may contain any of the standard file
     name matching characters ("[", "]", "?", or "*"), in which case files in
     the hierarchy will be associated with the first pattern that they match.

     Each of the keyword/value pairs consist of a keyword, followed by an
     equals sign, followed by the keyword's value, without whitespace charac-
     ters. These values override, without changing, the global value of the
     corresponding keyword.

     All paths are relative. Specifying a directory will cause subsequent
     files to be searched for in that directory hierarchy. Which brings us to
     the last type of line in a specification: a line containing only the
     string ".." causes the current directory path to ascend one level.

     Empty lines and lines whose first non-whitespace character is a hash mark
     ('#') are ignored.

     The mtree utility exits with a status of 0 on success, 1 if any error oc-
     curred, and 2 if the file hierarchy did not match the specification. A
     status of 2 is converted to a status of 0 if the -U option is used.


     /etc/mtree  system specification directory


     To detect system binaries that have been "trojan horsed", it is recom-
     mended that mtree -cK sha1digest be run on the filesystems, and a copy of
     the results stored on a different machine, or, at least, in encrypted
     form. The output file itself should be digested using the sha1(1) utili-
     ty. Then, periodically, mtree and sha1(1) should be run against the on-
     line specifications. While it is possible for the bad guys to change the
     on-line specifications to conform to their modified binaries, it is be-
     lieved to be impractical for them to create a modified specification
     which has the same SHA1 digest as the original.

     The -d and -u options can be used in combination to create directory
     hierarchies for distributions and other such things; the files in
     /etc/mtree were used to create almost all directories in a normal binary


     chgrp(1), chmod(1), cksum(1), md5(1), rmd160(1), sha1(1), stat(2),
     fts(3), md5(3), rmd160(3), sha1(3), hier(7), chown(8)


     The mtree utility appeared in 4.3BSD-Reno.

MirBSD #10-current            September 4, 2020                              3

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