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Re: Request for Comments: Standardize enabling/disabling of system services

On Thursday 02 April 2009 01:03:27 Patrick Schoenfeld wrote:
> Hi,
> currently we seem to have no clear policy in Debian how to handle
> the question: "Shall a service started once its installed or not?"
> The current state of affairs is that some packages start after beeing
> installed, some don't, because they don't have a reasonable default
> configuration and some don't, because the maintainer does not like
> this approach.
> We also don't seem to have a clear consense how to disable/temporarily
> deactivate services. The current situation is that some packages include
> a file in /etc/default with a variable "RUN", "RUN_<PACKAGENAME>",
> "START_ON_BOOT" or even another possible name
> which decides weither a service runs when invoke-rc.d <service> start
> is issued or not. Some other packages do not follow this approach
> and start or don't start as the maintainer sees fit.
> There are clear disadvantages with this:
> - The administrator has no way to influence the decision weither
> a service shall run directly after installation.
> - The administrator needs to apply and know about several different
> ways about how to enable/disable services.

An interface for disabling/enabling system boot scripts has been proposed
and committed [1] and also made available for dependency based boot [2].

These changes may need to be discussed further now though, as Steve Langasek
seems to prefer this to be provided by a new tool (as mentioned later in this

Thanks, Kel.

[0] http://lists.alioth.debian.org/pipermail/pkg-sysvinit-commits/2009-February/001208.html
[1] http://svn.debian.org/wsvn/initscripts-ng/?sc=1&rev=878

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