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Bug#189347: stop the "manage with debconf" madness

   Date: 16 Apr 2003 19:08:17 -0400
   From: Colin Walters <walters@debian.org>

   Package: laptop-net
   Severity: serious

   I just installed "laptop-net", becuase it looked similar to
   something I'd like to work on.

   The first thing it asked me was whether I wanted to "manage" its
   configuration file with Debconf, and it defaulted to "yes"!

   This behavior needs to stop, now.  It is a violation of Policy, section
   11.7.3, which states that local changes must be preserved during a
   package upgrade.

   Debconf is NOT a license to overwrite user's configurations!

I agree.  A simple look at the list of bugs for laptop-net should make
it clear that the configuration management has some real problems.

The root of the problem is that the config files are badly designed --
or rather, not designed at all.  This is just programming by example
gone bad.

I have planned to fix this for some time, but it needs a few days of
concentrated effort, and until recently that wasn't possible.

   First of all, these questions CANNOT default to yes.


   I propose a different solution to this problem, which conforms much
   more with policy, while still allowing debconf to be used as much
   as possible.


I'd rather fix this properly; what you suggest is a workaround.  What
I consider a proper fix is to redefine the configuration files so that
they can be parsed.  I have learned, the hard way, that using shell
scripts for configuration files is a bad idea.

Now, all I need is enough time...


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