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From Manoj Kasichainula <>
Subject Re: config hook design
Date Fri, 28 Apr 2000 06:08:00 GMT
On Thu, Apr 27, 2000 at 06:59:16AM -0400, wrote:
> On Wed, 26 Apr 2000, Manoj Kasichainula wrote:
> > On Wed, Apr 26, 2000 at 05:22:36PM -0400, wrote:
> > > I thoroughly dislike the qmail approach for Apache.  It just doesn't fit
> > > well with what Apache does IMHO.
> > 
> > In what way? Remember, I don't expect mere mortals to hack on this
> > tree; a preparser will be bundled with Apache for now.
> Pardon my saying this, but that's idiotic.  :-)  What we have then, is a
> config system that "mere mortals" can't use without two extra tools.

OK, I was being a bit flippant there. I think that such a structure is
reasonable for normal people to use once they've actually read the
documentation on how it works; for example, this is similar to how the
Linux kernel can be configured at runtime.

But, some people prefer hacking on a single, commented file. We would
still bundle a preparser to break down the config and run checks that
we want done before an Apache server thinks about restarting, whether
a multi-file or single-file Apache config is used.

> This
> is no better than the configuration modules.  BTW, two tools because one
> has to convert to a file format that people can hack, and the second has
> to convert back.

Huh? Why is there ever a need to convert back. Humans shouldn't be
hacking on both sides.

> Well, we have the idea of inheritance in our config files, but this system
> means that you need a directory even if you aren't changing anything,
> because you might change something in a sub-directory.

I can't parse this.

> In general, I just dislike this design for something like a web
> server.  It doesn't buy us anything, IMO, and it hurts quite a bit.

I'm quite open to the possibility of a single-file config system too;
I've proposed the qmail-style configuration because it's extremely
easy for outside scripts to hack on.

> This
> is not easier to admin, if anything I think this is a harder design to
> admin.

I think this is a personal preference thing. Talk to a ReiserFS guy
sometime. :) As I've used this kind of setup more and more, I've been
growing to really like it (though qmail itself still annoys me). I've
also been worried about it because I don't think opening dozens of
files on startup is going to be very fast.

But don't hang the rest of my argument for out-of-process
configuration on this one proposal. 

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