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handling runlevels independently with update-rc.d


I am in the course of writing a graphical runlevel editor, and I happen to
have the following questions:

1) What would you recommend to create the symlinks in the various runlevels,
what is the preferred way of manipulating the runlevel stuff?
        a) ln -s 
        b) update-rc.d

My first thought was to use the latter, but I encountered a problem, which
lead to my next question. 

2) If I remove all symlinks in all runlevels (basically "update-rc.d -f
proftpd remove"), create a startup link ("update-rc.d proftpd start 50
4 ."), creating a stop link fails with the following output:

# update-rc.d proftpd stop 50 4 .
 System startup links for /etc/init.d/proftpd already exist.

This seems a bit odd to me, I checked twice, the startup link command did
not create any Knnproftpd links. So why's that?

The default option of update-rc.d only lets me create links for runlevels
3,4 and 5, so this one's out since I want to use the respective runlevels
independently from each other.

- "And what will you do when you grow up to be as big as me?"
asked the father of his little son.
- "Diet."

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