etckeeper with git breaks update-manager

Bug #1335391 reported by Borim on 2014-06-28
This bug affects 9 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
etckeeper (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

I have configured etckeeper to use git. It works fine if I use apt-get or synaptic paket manager.

But when the update-manger install new packet versions it ends with an "installation falied" message. When I check the status of the git repository in the etc directory, some changes are not commited, e.g.:

On branch master
Changes to be committed:
  (use "git reset HEAD <file>..." to unstage)

 modified: apt/apt.conf.d/01autoremove-kernels
 modified: init.d/resolvconf

ProblemType: Bug
DistroRelease: Ubuntu 14.04
Package: etckeeper 1.9ubuntu2
ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 3.13.0-29.53-generic
Uname: Linux 3.13.0-29-generic x86_64
NonfreeKernelModules: wl tbs6982fe tbs6680fe tbs6923fe tbs6985se tbs6928se tbs6982se tbs6991fe tbs6618fe tbs6922fe tbs6928fe tbs6991se
ApportVersion: 2.14.1-0ubuntu3.2
Architecture: amd64
CurrentDesktop: Unity
Date: Sat Jun 28 09:42:13 2014
InstallationDate: Installed on 2014-03-30 (89 days ago)
InstallationMedia: Ubuntu 14.04 LTS "Trusty Tahr" - Daily amd64 (20140329)
PackageArchitecture: all
SourcePackage: etckeeper
UpgradeStatus: No upgrade log present (probably fresh install)
mtime.conffile..etc.etckeeper.etckeeper.conf: 2014-03-30T16:33:03.109833

Borim (borim) wrote :
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

Status changed to 'Confirmed' because the bug affects multiple users.

Changed in etckeeper (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
tilo kremer (ubunteelo) wrote :

I am getting the same symptoms, but the error message is slightly more verbose:

fatal: $HOME not set

*** Please tell me who you are.


  git config --global "<email address hidden>"
  git config --global "Your Name"

to set your account's default identity.
Omit --global to set the identity only in this repository.

fatal: unable to auto-detect email address (got 'root@xxxxx.(none)')

I get the same error message as tilo kremer. Note that this only occurs in update-manager; running "apt-get update" from the command line works fine. Also, $HOME and the git configs are set both for normal user and root.

Using a german locale an zsh, if that's got anything to do with it.

Borim (borim) wrote :

I am using also a german local. Also the fault does not happen every update. Sometimes it works without a fault, but I did not recognize any schema, when the fault happen and when not.

Manzuk István (imanzuk) wrote :

+1 for the "Please tell me who you are." issue, with Hungarian locale and bash.

Related to bug #1267564 (duplicate)
Proposed solution as found on

To prevent this, make sure “/etc/hosts” contains a FQDN for the current hostname of your machine.

[...] ursula

Borim (borim) wrote :

I think the two bugs are only related. In #1267564 every change with apt, synaptic or update-manager leads to an error, as username and email are not set. As changing packages require root privilege the username and email have to be configured for the root login.
When this is done altering packages with apt, synaptic works. Until now I had never a problem when using apt or synaptic.

This bug report is about a problem with the update-manager and etckeeper. Although username and email are set in git for the root login, updating packages with the update-manager fails sometimes. Most of the time the updates are applied without any errors.

Robie Basak (racb) on 2015-09-22
Changed in etckeeper (Ubuntu):
importance: Undecided → High
Mikko Rantalainen (mira) wrote :

Am I then only one thinking that etckeeper should have post-install script to request git and fields to be filled for root if those are missing? I know how to do that manually but I guess random etckeeper user may not know that those are needed and it would be much better user experience to ask for those during etckeeper install.

@Mikko Rantalainen: This bug has nothing to do with whether and have been set for root or not, but I like your idea, so please file a different bug report for that.

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