Getting started with BLUEPHRASE

Configuration Syntax


This note describes the syntax used within server configuration files.

Configuration files are encoded using BLUEPHRASE notation. They must adhere to the following syntactic rules:


The first line of the file contains the BLUEPHRASE version pragma. Currently version 2.0 is the only version used.

!blue 2.0        

A complete configuration file can be assembled from partial configuration files using include pragmas, which begin with the include keyword and are followed by a filename path, which is delimited with GRAVE-ACCENTS. The path may be an absolute file system path, or a path relative to the current file.

!include `./`
!include `./`


Comments may be used anywhere, and come in two varieties:

  • Terminal comments begin with two consecutive SOLIDI.
  • Multi-line comments begin with a SOLIDUS-ASTERISK and end with an ASTERISK-SOLIDUS.

Blank lines are ignored.

// A terminal comment

A multi-line comment


The remainder of the file is composed of sections beginning with a keyword, followed by an opening LEFT-CURLY-BRACKET, followed by single-line entries and subsections, and terminated with a RIGHT-CURLY-BRACKET.

server {
// single line entries
subsection {

There are two top-level section keywords: server and host. All configuration settings must be included within one of these.

Single-line entries

Entries are single-line items — beginning with optional whitespace — consisting of keywords, plain-text values, sourcerefs, attributes, and comments.

Sourcerefs are filename paths that are enclosed in GRAVE-ACCENTS.

Attributes consists of four parts: an ASTERISK, a keyword, the EQUALS-SIGN and a value, where the value must be enclosed in matching APOSTROPHES or QUOTATION-MARKS if it contains any whitespace.

keyword                                 // a keyword by itself
keyword value // a keyword followed by a plain-text value
keyword `path/to/filename` // a GRAVE-ACCENT-delimited sourceref
keyword *attribute=value // an attribute
keyword *attribute="having white space" // an attribute enclosed in QUOTATION-MARKS


Key points to remember:

  • Configuration files are written using BLUEPHRASE syntax comprising sections, subsections, single-line entries, comments and pragmas.

Getting started with BLUEPHRASE

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