As part of the deployment and configuration process, you need to modify certain files. User modifiable files include configuration files, rule set files, templates, and seed files that contain encrypted passwords. Original versions of these files are installed into appropriate subdirectories under the BASEDIR/smarts/ directory.
The original versions of files should not be altered. If a file must be modified, a new version should be created and then stored as a local copy of the file in BASEDIR/smarts/local or one of its subdirectories.
When software requires one of these files, it is designed to first search for a modified file in BASEDIR/smarts/local or one of its subdirectories. If a modified version of a file is not found in the local area, software then searches corresponding BASEDIR/smarts directories for the original version of the file.
To ease file editing and storage, VMware, Inc. provides the sm_edit utility with the every product. When invoked, sm_edit opens the specified file in a text editor. This utility ensures that modified files are always saved to the appropriate local area and that non-local copies of all files remain unchanged. If an appropriate subdirectory does not exist for the file you are modifying, sm_edit creates the appropriate subdirectory before saving the modified file to that location. For files with header information set for encryption, sm_edit encrypts certain fields in the file. In addition, sm_edit preserves the file permissions of modified files, which helps ensure that important configuration files are not altered by unauthorized users.
The System Administration Guide provides instructions on how to configure the utility to use a specific editor.