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Re: Back to technical discussion? Yes!

"Dmitry E. Oboukhov" <unera@debian.org> writes:

> JM> It seems to be a common belief between some developers that users should
> JM> have to read dozens of pages of documentation before attempting to do
> JM> anything.

> JM> I’m happy that not all of us share this elitist view of software. I
> JM> thought we were building the Universal Operating System, not the
> JM> Operating System for bearded gurus.

> User MUST study each OS he uses. If he doesn't want he will be forced to
> pay the other people who will tune his (user's) system.

I know lots about Linux, and even I have no desire to study enough
documentation to figure out how to run wpa_supplicant by hand.  I've done
it a couple of times and it was horribly painful.  I'm much happier
letting wicd handle it for me.

Increasing the amount of stuff that just works is important.

"It is a profoundly erroneous truism, repeated by all copy-books and by
eminent people when they are making speeches, that we should cultivate the
habit of thinking of what we are doing.  The precise opposite is the case.
Civilisation advances by extending the number of operations we can perform
without thinking about them." -- Alfred North Whitehead

That said, for simple server network configuration patterns, ifupdown just
works.  I think a lot of the push-back that's happening in this thread is
that replacing ifupdown for the simple but very common case of having one
statically-configured or DHCP-configured wired Ethernet connection on a
server seems like a really bad idea, since ifupdown just works and is
substantially better than the Red Hat equivalent.

I don't think that many people in that situation will be enthusiastic
about running something as complex as Network Manager on a typical simple
server networking setup.  (And usually when the networking gets complex on
a server, it needs to be carefully hand-configured to do the right thing,
and not in a way that Network Manager was designed to do.)

That said, of course for a server build one can just remove Network
Manager and install ifupdown and go on with life.  Changing the default
doesn't mean forcing it on everyone.  But I think that's much of where the
concern arises.

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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