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Re: debconf and cluster management

On Fri, 15 Feb 2002, Marcelo E. Magallon wrote:

>  > > Did anybody there already tried it ? is it as cool as it seems ?
>  > 
>  > Thanks for pointing this out, I hadn't noticed it (this is the sort
>  > of thing DWN should be mentioning!) but it does seem to be uber-cool.
>  Debconf was designed[*] from the beginning to support this.  AFAIK, at
>  the moment there's no "remote" back-end yet.  What you'd need is a
>  server that can spit out debconf information and the matching client.
>  One possibility is to use a SQL back-end.  Joey Hess started to write
>  such a thing, AFAIR, but I don't know how far that is.

Joey said he's only got local file (etc) DBs done.  I got the impression
that no work has been done on remote databases, because I've volunteered to
write them (at least the LDAP one at this stage - SQL when I can think up a
reasonably sane table structure).

>  > All that would be needed extra is a way to get all possible questions
>  > from a list of packages and answer them without doing anything to the
>  > running system.  I guess fiddling with debconf.conf and apt-get would
>  > probably solve it, or something in apt-utils...
>  That'd be the non-interactive front-end.

I think you misunderstood what I was after.  I know the non-interactive
front-end, and it's what gets used at present.  What I wanted was some way
to say 'OK, ask me the questions from these packages and then give me the
debconf data (stored in some remote database, preferably) to use on other
machines - but without screwing with the config the local machine.'

There are a few issues with this, but it would be very useful.  You work out
all the packages you'll be putting onto the cluster, and configure them
before you go within several miles of installing all the cluster machines.

>  The basic idea is that you configure a machine using the interactive
>  front-end, store the configuration on a remote location and then
>  configure the rest of the machines using the non-interactive front-end.

This is what I want, but without needing to configure an actual, live,
running machine.  Basically, I want a way to get asked all the questions and
store the answers somewhere without touching the machine the program is
running on.

>  Then you get spammed with tons of mails telling you how hundreds of
>  machines where configured the same way :-)

Aah, at least it's proof something happened. <g>

#include <disclaimer.h>
Matthew Palmer

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