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Chef library cookbook to manage Homesick castle repositories.
Latest commit 7d41d93 @fnichol Add Project URLs.

Homesick Chef Cookbook

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Chef library cookbook to manage Homesick castle repositories.


Simply include recipe[homesick] in your run_list and the homesick_repo resource will be available.

To use recipe[homesick::data_bag], include it in your run_list and have a data bag called "users" with an item for your user like the following:

  "id"  : "wigglebottom",
  "homesick_castles"  : [
    { "name"    : "dotvim",
      "source"  : "git://"
    { "name"    : "dotfiles",
      "source"  : "git://",
      "action"  : "update"

The data bag recipe will iterate through a list of usernames defined in node['users'] and attempt to pull in the homesick information from the data bag item. In other words, having:

node['users'] = ['hsolo']

will set up the hsolo user's castles and not use the wigglebottom user.



Tested on 11.4.4 but newer and older version should work just fine. File an issue if this isn't the case.


The following platforms have been tested with this cookbook, meaning that the recipes run on these platforms without error:

  • ubuntu
  • debian
  • centos
  • scientific
  • mac_os_x
  • suse
  • openbsd

Please report any additional platforms so they can be added.


This cookbook depends on the following external cookbooks:


Depending on the situation and use case there are several ways to install this cookbook. All the methods listed below assume a tagged version release is the target, but omit the tags to get the head of development. A valid Chef repository structure like the Opscode repo is also assumed.

From the Opscode Community Site

To install this cookbook from the Community Site, use the knife command:

knife cookbook site install homesick

Using Berkshelf

Berkshelf is a cookbook dependency manager and development workflow assistant. To install Berkshelf:

cd chef-repo
gem install berkshelf
berks init

To use the Community Site version:

echo "cookbook 'homesick'" >> Berksfile
berks install

Or to reference the Git version:

latest_release=$(curl -s$repo/git/refs/tags \
| ruby -rjson -e '
  j = JSON.parse(;
  puts { |t| t["ref"].split("/").last }.sort.last
cat >> Berksfile <<END_OF_BERKSFILE
cookbook 'homesick',
  :git => 'git://$repo.git', :branch => '$latest_release'
berks install

Using Librarian-Chef

Librarian-Chef is a bundler for your Chef cookbooks. To install Librarian-Chef:

cd chef-repo
gem install librarian
librarian-chef init

To use the Community Site version:

echo "cookbook 'homesick'" >> Cheffile
librarian-chef install

Or to reference the Git version:

latest_release=$(curl -s$repo/git/refs/tags \
| ruby -rjson -e '
  j = JSON.parse(;
  puts { |t| t["ref"].split("/").last }.sort.last
cat >> Cheffile <<END_OF_CHEFFILE
cookbook 'homesick',
  :git => 'git://$repo.git', :ref => '$latest_release'
librarian-chef install



This recipe is a no-op and does nothing.

Use this recipe when you only want access to the homesick_castle LWRP.


Fetches an list of homesick castles with data drawn from a data bag. The default data bag is "users" and the list of user accounts to iterate through is set on node['users'].

Use this recipe when you want data bag driven data in your workflow.



The data bag name containing a group of user account information. This is used by the data_bag recipe to use as a database of user accounts. The default is "users".


The node attributes containing an array of users to be managed. If a nested hash in the node's attributes is required, then use a / between subhashes. For example, if the users' array is stored in node['system']['accounts']), then set node['homesick']['user_array_node_attr'] to "system/accounts".

The default is "users".


The version of the Homesick gem to install.

The default is "~> 0.7.0" (pending upstream PR #40).

Resources and Providers



Action Description Default
install Clones the castle and symlinks it. Yes
update Pulls updates for the castle and re-symlinks it.  


Attribute Description Default Value
name Name attribute: The name of the homesick castle. nil
user The user using the castle. nil
source The clone URL (http, https, git, etc.) of the castle. nil


Install a Castle
homesick_castle 'dotvim' do
  user    'wigglebottom
  source  'git://'

Note: the install action is the default.

Pull Updates for a Castle
homesick_castle 'dotfiles' do
  user    'wigglebottom
  source  'git://'
  action  :update


Pull requests are very welcome! Make sure your patches are well tested. Ideally create a topic branch for every separate change you make.

License and Author

Author:: Fletcher Nichol ( endorse

Copyright 2011, Fletcher Nichol

Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License"); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at

Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS, WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied. See the License for the specific language governing permissions and limitations under the License.

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