The VC Directory buffer contains a list of version-controlled files and their version control statuses. It lists files in the current directory (the one specified when you called C-x v d) and its subdirectories, but only those with a noteworthy status. Files that are up-to-date (i.e., the same as in the repository) are omitted. If all the files in a subdirectory are up-to-date, the subdirectory is not listed either. As an exception, if a file has become up-to-date as a direct result of a VC command, it is listed.
Here is an example of a VC Directory buffer listing:
./ edited configure.ac * added README unregistered temp.txt src/ * edited src/main.c
Two work files have been modified but not committed: configure.ac in the current directory, and foo.c in the src/ subdirectory. The file named README has been added but is not yet committed, while temp.txt is not under version control (see Registering).
The ‘*’ characters next to the entries for README and src/main.c indicate that the user has marked out these files as the current VC fileset (see VC Directory Commands).
The above example is typical for a decentralized version control system like Bazaar, Git, or Mercurial. Other systems can show other statuses. For instance, CVS shows the ‘needs-update’ status if the repository has changes that have not been applied to the work file. RCS and SCCS show the name of the user locking a file as its status.
On CVS and Subversion, the
vc-dir command normally contacts
the repository, which may be on a remote machine, to check for
updates. If you change the variable vc-stay-local or
vc-cvs-stay-local (for CVS) to
nil (see CVS Options), then Emacs avoids contacting a remote repository when
generating the VC Directory buffer (it will still contact it when
necessary, e.g., when doing a commit). This may be desirable if you
are working offline or the network is slow.
The VC Directory buffer omits subdirectories listed in the variable vc-directory-exclusion-list. Its default value contains directories that are used internally by version control systems.