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Re: Caldera installation - something Debian should learn

On Sat, 24 Apr 1999, Marsh Ray wrote:

> I think speed is a maybe, but I don't think I would agree with
> you on the size.
> The reason the text files in /etc seem complex, is because they have a
> complex structure to model complex data.  I'd like to see someone
> take a general-purpose database tool and try to model the content and
> structure of the /etc tree.  I've got over 500 files in mine,
> and probably half of them would need their own table in this schema.
> This is where the NT registry fails: it's fine for representing
> heirarchical data (or would be if it were managed properly,) but
> program configuration data is, by definition, n-dimensional.

This is interesting. What do you mean? Can you give an example?

> Don't even bother trying to represent some sort of progamming language
> or scripting capablilty. You may as well use Java .class files for that.

Wouldn't dream of it.

> If you're going to claim this speed benefit, you're going to have to
> build indexes into this database. That's gonna grow your size enormously.
> My /etc is 2 MB, probably much less if you strip out all the comments.

I wouldn't do that, comments are good.

> Now consider the size of some general-purpose relational database file
> with hundreds of tables. I'd bet it'll be at least 10 times that size.

We'll see.

> BTW, any programmer who's used a 'lex' tool will tell you that
> the code it generates for your configuration-file syntax will output
> that ideal binary format you're talking about.  The parsing error
> handling requirements will be just the same, except users will have
> far less recourse in fixing the problems. Did you see the -user posts
> from that guy who's shell scripts wouldn't run because DOS terminated
> the lines with CRLF? I think 3 people suggested different ways he
> could fix the file with one-liners. How's a mailinglist going to help a
> user figure out how to fix a binary file that some program rejects?
> We're back to the "oh, the registry's become corrupted, nothing-we-can-do,
> better re-install" that the NT users are so familiar with.

I think the problem of corruption will be great;y helped by the
open source model:
	* If it does corrupt you have the source and can probably fix it.
	* will prob won't become corrupt for the same reason linux
	  doesn't crash that often

> I use Debian and NT (not by choice). Text-based configuration and
> administration is the primary reason why I do as much as possible in Debian.

Well promise me you'll try it with an open mind and not one
poisoned by registry troubles.

| R Garth Wood                    | Making waves...                     | 
| Stormix Technologies Inc.       |                                     | 
| rgwood@stormix.com              |                                     |

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