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From Brian Behlendorf <>
Subject Module requirements?
Date Tue, 05 Dec 1995 06:18:40 GMT

One last piece of email before I leave for the night...

I would like to collect some people's thoughts as to what should be made 
requirements for modules to be elegible for inclusion with the core 
Apache code.  It seems like some problems have been caused by a lack of 
understanding as to what default behaviors should be.  I have come up with 
a short list:

1)  The module must not do anything unless module-specific directives are 
turned on in a conf file.  (i.e., mod_referer doesn't start logging unless 
there's an explicit LogReferer field, or httpd/send-as-is unless it's 
added either via AddType or by existing in the mime.types file).

2)  The module must list any conflicts with any other distribution patches
(and the goal should be to avoid conflicts - for example, mod_log_config 
could probably be modified to coexist peacefully with mod_log_common) [1]

3)  All lookups/calls which might return a NULL pointer should handle 
that case gracefully. (yeah, just good coding practice in general, but 
we've seen enough problems related to that)

4)  Errors should be logged - fatal errors should have their failures 

Anyone want to add anything?  I'd like to put this into a document on the 
live site, and then apply it to existing modules.


[1] - to make this easier on the server admin, it would probably behoove 
us to make the configuration files parser more lenient, only giving a 
warning if it finds a directive it doesn't understand instead of exiting 

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