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darcs is a peer-to-peer revision control system, written in Haskell.

Understanding darcs

You can think of a darcs repository as containing these things:

  • Patches: a patch is a collection of changes that forms the unit of synchronisation with other repositories
  • Unrecorded changes to known files and directories
  • Unknown items (files and directories)
  • Boring items: anything with a name matched in _darcs/prefs/boring

Note that some projects are keen on making sure all derivative items are "boring" rather than merely unknown items that will show up with darcs wh -l. Other projects less so.


Unknown items

  • darcs whatsnew -l: show changes and unknown items
  • creating a item: these will be "unknown".
  • darcs add: turns an unknown item into a change
  • darcs remove: creates an change to remove the item but keeps it as an unknown item.


  • darcs whatsnew: show changes
  • removing an item: creates a change to remove the item
  • editing a file adds to the edit to the changes
  • darcs mv: create a change to move an item
  • darcs replace: create a change to replace text in a file
  • darcs record: record changes as a patch


  • darcs changes: show patches
  • darcs pull: get patches from another repository
  • darcs push: put patches in another repository
  • darcs apply: get patches from an email bundle
  • darcs rollback: adds a patch that is the inverse of an existing patch
  • darcs obliterate: removes a patch. Warning: if the patch doesn't exist elsewhere, you will lose that work.


  • darcs initialize: create a new empty repository
  • darcs get: create a new empty repository and get patches from another repository

External link