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Re: [desktop] Configuration handling

On Wed, 2003-01-01 at 18:44, HAESSIG Jean-Christophe wrote:
> Hi,
> I have been thinking for a long time about the confiuration issue

For something like this to succeed, it will have to be supported by many
distributions. I think debconf is far too Debian specific and as Colin
has said it has a different aim. 
I disagree when you say they have to be developed by the distribution. A
universal GNU tool would, IMHO, be far better. (so long as it works with
all the distributions - LSB support, etc.)

Therefore, my suggestion would be that we need to integrate an
independently developed tool into Debian (or rather, integrate Debian
into the tool). This could be something like gnome system tools, webmin,
or whatever your favourite is. 

Personally, I really like the look of the Configuration for GNU project
(http://config4gnu.sourceforge.net/), however this is still very young. 

IMHO, there are a number of problems with all these projects which will
make them fail at present:
- still in planning stages
- only support limited interfaces
- only support a limited subset of system configuration
- Poor L10N support
- Poor remote admin support
- require special files to define configuration for each version of an
application. These are often out of date. 

The final item does seem like a major stumbling block, however if a
system which satisfies the other problems was adopted by a distribution,
then this would become simpler with time, as package maintainers would
help with the creation of these files and then eventually (application)
upstreams would begin to include these in their tarballs (after they see
that many people, including themselves, require the files). 

Where to go from here?
In my humble opinion, we need to wait for the main set of objectives
listed above (and probably others I haven't thought of) to be satisfied
in some tool, then try to support that tool fully as a distribution.
  .''`. Mark Howard
 : :' :
 `. `'  http://www.tildemh.com
   `-   mh@debian.org | mh@tildemh.com | mh344@cam.ac.uk 
  .''`. Mark Howard
 : :' :
 `. `'  http://www.tildemh.com 
   `-   mh@debian.org | mh@tildemh.com | mh344@cam.ac.uk 

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