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Re: Linuxconf and debian (fwd)

Just wondering if anyone else has got in contact with him?

Shaya Potter

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Fri, 1 Nov 1996 13:35:36 -0500 (EST)
From: Jacques Gelinas <jack@solucorp.qc.ca>
To: Shaya Potter <spotter@itd.nrl.navy.mil>
Cc: debian-devel@lists.debian.org
Subject: Re: Linuxconf and debian

On Fri, 1 Nov 1996, Shaya Potter wrote:

> On Thu, 31 Oct 1996, Jacques Gelinas wrote:
> > There is only one "gotcha" on Debian systems. Linuxconf rely on nslookup
> > to probe the DNS. For example, when activating the configuration, be it
> > for booting or updating a configuration change, linuxconf always does
> > (Unless told not too) some probing with the DNS to make sure all is well
> > (DNS problems are the most confusing one).
> > 
> > To achieve this probing, linuxconf rely on nslookup. Unfortunatly, on
> > debian, the basic nslookup installed is a fake. You have to install the
> > bind package to get it. I consider this unfortunate as nslookup is a neat
> > debugging tool even if you don't run a DNS on your machine.
> Actually, there was a lot of talk on debian-devel about getting the 
> fake nslookup out, and putting a real one in instead.  However, I don't 
> remember what the final descition on that was, I'll ask on debian-devel 
> though to find out.
> Also, why should it matter, don't they need bind installed to use the dns 
> stuff in linuxconf? 

As far as I understand the packaging of bind on Debian, the bind package
is needed only if you want to run a DNS. Client workstation don't need it.
Linuxconf do not need except if you want to configure the DNS. In this
case it will try to start named and will fail (will tell you that the
named utility is missing).

Any linuxconf station is currently using nslookup (unless told not too) to
verify that the connectivity with the DNS (the first one written in
/etc/resolv.conf). For sure this only happen when you are running in
network mode (client or server), which is a concept rather unique to

The idea here is that if anything is wrong with the DNS, this produce
behavior so bizare, from a user point of view, that they will shake to
world to fix it, including changing the ethernet adaptor (I have seen this
one). So linuxconf does the connectivity check anytime it is updating the
running configuration (another unique key feature of linuxconf).

This is why nslookup is needed on every workstation that intend to do
tcp/ip somewhat.

I intend to do much more checking with nslookup in the future. It won't be
automatic. The user will have to trigger this action. I have not yet
coined the name for it. It will be something like

	DNS doctor
	ISP bugger

The later name come from the fact that most ISP providing DNS services to
customer do it pretty badly and the customer have often a hard time
figuring why some services work and others don't (or work slowly). The
concept of this tool is to validate some key point of a DNS and do it from
different points of view

	From this machine point of view
	From another DNS unrelated to the organisation, point of view.

Anyway, linuxconf-1.7r23 is out with installation support
for Debian 1.1 and a complete uninstall script. Those on Debian list who
want to give it a try will be in position to do so easily.

it is available from ftp.solucorp.qc.ca:/pub/linuxconf/devel/


Jacques Gelinas (jacques@solucorp.qc.ca)
Linuxconf: The ultimate administration system for Linux.
see http://www.solucorp.qc.ca/linuxconf

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