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Re: RFC: GUI tools for common Debian admin tasks


I think that easier config is a worthy goal.  I have long mused about how
to teach a single tool about the myriad config files.  But I'm too lazy to
actually write one.

On Thu, 7 Sep 2000, Frederic Peters wrote:

> Seth Cohn wrote :
> > >So, yes, why reinvent the wheel, if there are allready n^x conftools
> > >around with a new one popping up monthly (webmin, COAS, linuxconf,
> > >debconf, yast, ..., ..., ...) ? It's not going to make anything
> > >easier.
> > Agreed.  If you want to do something USEFUL, write a better webmin, debconf
> > or linuxconf module.
>  - webmin: I think it is useful (and nice) not to have to launch mozilla
>    to add an user or change a password.
>  - debconf: dpkg-reconfigure users ? debconf is there to configure
>    applications and I don't want to replace it at all. It is just not
>    suited for some tasks
>  - linuxconf: Marco d'Itri sent a comment I agree with (excepted for
>    the insecure part where I don't have enough knowledge to judge)

"why reinvent the wheel" was one of my first reactions, too.

I'm glad to see some discussion of alternatives.  I hope that someone
(Frederic?) will take notes and write a summary on a web page somewhere.
I'm reminded of the document that someone (Joey Hess?) wrote comparing
packaging tools.

I'd like to see a little more in depth comparison, though.  For example,
someone says that linuxconf "sucks, is buggy, and insecure"; but does that
make it harder to fix than to reinvent?  Why?  It is said to be "tainted
by redhat", but how about fixing it to allow customization for different
distribution flavours?  

I used linuxconf as an example, but the same questions apply to all other
config tools.  Gnome, for instance, has a config tool.  I'm sure kde does
too.  Presumably you want a tool independent of these desktops, but it
would be great if it interacted with Gnome's tool.  Maybe one could even
separate the back-end from the GNOME front-end, and re-use it?

Even if you can't use a single line of code from any of the existing
projects, studying them allows you to steal worthwhile ideas and learn
from their mistakes.


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