In Sample Data the available data sets are listed (mainly existing accounts). Source controle is done via git. Upon login with ssh a short summary of useful commands is displayed – this is reproduced below.

# access postgres database
sudo -u cdb psql -U cdb -d cdb

# reload (update the running state with current code,
# i.e. restart backend and frontend)
cd /cdedb2 && make reload

# run (part of the) test suite - all tests matching the given patterns
# (the filename can be included in the pattern but does not have to)
# when no pattern given, run full suite
/cdedb2/bin/ test_backend_event*test_json_fields_with_dates

# list CdEDB log files (most recently changed first)
ls -lht /var/log/cdedb

# reset database (DESTROYS ALL DATA)
cd /cdedb2 && make sample-data


To increase performance it is very effective to do one of these two things, but they can cause serious data loss. So they are only recommended when working with test data.

  • Replace cache=writethrough by cache=writeback or even cache=unsafe when running the VM.

  • In the file /etc/postgresql/12/main/postgresql.conf in the VM set the following options in the WRITE AHEAD LOG section:

    fsync = off
    synchronous_commit = off
    full_page_writes = off


In the i18n directory in the repository there are two helper scripts for git: and

These scripts are enabled by default on the VM image. As the Docker container however only mounts the local repository you will have to configure these manually. To enable these scripts add the following to the .git/config file:

[diff "podiff"]
    textconv = i18n/
[merge "pomerge"]
    name = Gettext merge driver
    driver = i18n/ %O %A %B

The first one is used when executing git diff on .po files. It removes all lines starting with #: before comparing the files, because they contain line numbers of every string usage and those numbers are prone to change.

If you want to disable this temporarily you can run git diff --no-textconv. If you however want to disable this permanently you can remove the following lines from your .git/config file:

[diff "podiff"]
    textconv = i18n/

or add the following line to your .git/info/attributes file:

*.po diff

The second one is a three-way merge driver for .po and .pot files, hopefully making merging of these files easier. If the merge fails you will have to look for #-#-#-#-# as conflict markers instead of the usual git conflict markers.

If you want to disable this, remove the following lines from your .git/config file:

[merge "pomerge"]
    name = Gettext merge driver
    driver = i18n/ %O %A %B

or add the following line from your .git/info/attributes file:

*.po merge

Sample dev setup

Here is a description of my setup hopefully aiding new devs in setup. This is by no means a mandatory setup. First an overview of the directory structure:

├── cdedb2/
│   └── ...
├── vm-repo/
│   └── ...
├── image.qcow2

Everything lives inside the directory /home/markus/DB/ where cdedb2/ is a clone of the git repository. Most development happens in this directory. Then there is the VM image image.qcow2 which is started by the script This script additionally uses sshfs to mount the git repository inside the VM to the directory vm-repo/. Finally the script logs into the VM.

The typical change is developed in cdedb2/ and committed there. Then the commit is transferred to the VM by issuing the command git pull ../cdedb2/ inside the vm-repo/ directory. Now the test suite is executed inside the VM and if successful the change is pushed from cdedb2/ to the server.