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* keep an origin branch with the files debian ships
Not sure quite how to do this yet, it seems it would need to clone
the repo, switch to origin, and commit, then push back to /etc,
and either merge origin or commit a second time.
And do this after apt runs only, of course.
Alternatively, commit in /etc, then clone the repo, switch to origin, and
cherry pick the commit into origin?
Of coure, unless etckeeper is installed by debootstrap or thereabouts,
you won't have a true pristine origin branch.
etcgit manages this, maybe steal its method?
git://git.debian.org/git/users/jo-guest/etcgit.git
* split the repo
One way to split it would be to put private (non-world-readable) files
in one repo, and public in another. This would need either symlink
farming or git "fake bare" repos, both of which are not pleasant, yet.
Another way would be to allow splitting out subdirs into their own repos.
This is already doable, would just need modifying the pre-install and
post-instlal stuff (ie, it needs to commit in the subdirs too). Using mr
would be a possibility..