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Re: Configuration Tool(s)

Rick Jones wrote:
> Nick Mathewson wrote:
> >
> >   * Its module format requires C++, and knowledge of several API's.
> >   * The group seems to have committed to having an interface that
> >     can run over HTML, so (unless they add Java or something), the
> >     difficulty of adding a new widget may be great.
> The Java GUI is done, alpha, I haven't used it in a while so don't know
> if it's in a final useable state yet.  I plan to look into it tonight.
> >   * The C++ API is the only one out there -- no hooks for other languages
> >     are provided, and no high-level file description format seems to
> >     exist.
> >
> > Other projects, such as Debian's Dotfile program, and Avery Pennarun's
> > Figurine (http://www.imada.ou.dk/~blackie/dotfile/ and
> > http://www.foxnet.net/~apenwarr/figurine/ideal.html) also seem to me
> > to be limited, but in different ways.  Dotfile (IIRC) does not
> > preserve formatting or comments, and Figurine's model seems (IMO) to
> > be a bit immature.  The most damning aspect of these projects, to me,
> > is that Dotfile requires modules to be written in Tcl, and Figurine
> > requires them to be written in Python.  While I have nothing against
> > these languages, Tcl is IMO inappropriate for heavy-duty text-processing,
> > and requiring our developers to all learn Python is probably not wise.
> Dot-file seems to be more of a user utility than a system utility.
> Maybe a combination of it and Linuxconf?
> >
> > Phil Berry's LASS is a dialog-based tool, written in sh.  It's very
> > well-done, but I don't feel that sh is extensible enough to handle
> > our needs for the general case, let alone the X interface.  He _does_
> > write very clean code, however, and his backends seem to be well-
> > written.  He sent me a copy by email, which I've temporarily put at
> > ftp://frunobulax.mit.edu/pub/nickm/lass-0.1a.tar.gz, in case anybody
> > wants to check out his code.
> > ========================================
> >
> > It seems to me that our best bet (unless someone tells me of a better
> > tool) is either to fix Linuxconf to do what we want, or to write our
> > own configuration tool, possible using some code from Linuxconf.  Over
> > the next week or so, I'm going to read through the Linuxconf source,
> > and try it out on a test partition.  (I won't install it on my main
> > system, as it seems to want to overrun my sysvinit setup.)
> Modification of the sysv setup is optional to give Linuxconf more
> controle.  It can be used as a config-only tool without modifying sysv
> or any other system files.
> Linuxconf isn't perfect but IMHO it's the closest we have in an existing
> tool.
> --
> Out here,
> Rick Jones
> rickya@siservices.net

Looking at the timeline for a future SEUL release, it seems as if COAS
may be ready by then as well.  I don't know much about COAS, but since
it is in alpha, I would imagine that COAS working group would be happy
to include any additions or suggestions SEUL has.  Of course, the
minuses against it include the fact that it is still in alpha, and makes
it difficult for SEUL to work with a copy that is a fairly definite
model of the finished product.

Just my US$0.02

David Freeman
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