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Re: Better support for merging local and upstream (was: Erase cache, clean registry in Linux)

On Sun, Dec 07, 2008 at 08:24:45PM -0200, Eduardo M KALINOWSKI wrote:
> From: lee <lee@yun.yagibdah.de>
> > When a program uses a number of different configuration files, it's
> > much more difficult for the administrator to configure it.
> I'd say it's a matter of preference. I like exim's split configuration, it 
> makes upgrades easier as I only have to deal with the parts that I've 
> changed. And perhaps not even that, if I can make a change by adding a new 
> snippet file instead of changing an existing one.

Well, I don't like it, it would make configuring exim impossible if I
couldn't bypass it. Using a single configuration file, you as well
only need to deal with the parts that need to be changed. But you
would know what is configured and what needs to be changed which is
impossible with the automatic configuration.

> For those who prefer a single file, debconf allows that, satisfying all 
> kinds of people. You can even dump debconf altogether and do all the 
> configuration yourself.

Yes, it's good to have a choice. The problem is that the choice
eventually gets taken away.

> > Well, that already has been achieved to a great deal, hasn't it? Just
> > packages like exim4 or apache2 that use an approach which makes it
> > very difficult to impossible for the administrator to configure them
> > break it.
> That's your opinion. Do not take it as absolute.

It's a matter of fact. You can try it by, for example, installing php
for apache2. You're not being told what needs to be done with the
apache2 config, it gets modified automatically. Then you find that it
doesn't work, not before restarting apache2 manually.

Exim4 is another example. I can configure it easily bypassing the
automatic configuration, but I'm unable to configure it using the
auomatic configuration. What about changes if you use the automatic
configuration? Would you be told what is being changed? Or would your
mailserver suddenly be configured differently without you even knowing
about it?

> I don't know about apache, but as I said, with exim it's quite easy
> to use a single file, if you prefer it that way.

Well, where is the option to have the automatic configuration create a
single configuration file that you can easily check and then use to
configure your program if you want to?

"Don't let them, daddy. Don't let the stars run down."

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