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Re: Linuxconf

On Tue, 2 Jun 1998, Shaya Potter wrote:

> > Again, recent versions of linuxconf reportedly handle this.  It is
> > not clear to me yet, however, if linuxconf also maintains its own
> > database/registry that it keeps in sync with the text files.
> It edits the files directly, even keeps the comments (which I'm not
> so sure is a good thing, as the comments can be outdated by linuxconf
> makes changes).

keeping comments is a good thing. comments aren't only "notes", they're
also commented-out configuration directives - either examples of how to
do something or historical record of how something was set up in the
past, or even work-in-progress stuff which won't be uncommented (i.e.
activated) until next Sunday at 3am.

lack of comments is the number one reason why a registry-like system is
completely inadequate as a replacement for text config files, even if
the registry-corruption problems are solved.

i am also not sure that editing the config files directly is a good
thing. in fact, i think it is prone to error, with potentially
disastrous results (the parser would either place arbitrary restrictions
on what can be done in the config file or would make mistakes).  IMO,
the config files should be generated from a plain text template (i.e.
the config file plus some markup language), merging in the config values
stored in a config database.


craig sanders

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