The Strengths and Weakness of Fedora/RHEL OS management

sean seanlkml at
Mon Mar 27 22:47:30 UTC 2006

On Mon, 27 Mar 2006 14:36:11 -0800 (PST)
Shane Stixrud <shane at> wrote:

> I would be insulted if I didn't know you were just making a generalized 
> statement :).  Who here hasn't spent more than 2 minutes trying to figure 
> a missing period in a named conf file, or more than two minutes setting up 
> ldap for the first time, or more than two minutes figuring out where to 
> find a specific option and value for /etc/modules.conf etc...  The 
> problem is each time you touch something you haven't touched in the 
> past one must spend significant time figuring out how to make the change 
> even if they already know what they want to change.  This is not true for 
> all configuration files, but it is for many.  The amount of neurons I have 
> dedicated to configuration syntax and where the lists of values and 
> their descriptions are stored is many more than I would like.

lol, naw i think you mistook my meaning.  I'm not saying that all
config editing can be handled in under two minutes.   What i am saying
though is that no more time than that is needed to comprehend the
config file format.   Once you've seen one config file, you've seen
em all; more or less.

A standard config file format isn't going to lessen the burden if 
understanding what all those config options etc mean.   Even if 
that config file is presented in a pretty gui gconf-editor like tool.

> The "non-initiated" see this as complex and on this specific issue I 
> agree, it is more complex than it needs to be.. I am just used to it and 
> shrug it off.
> If for every "key": its default, possible values (on, off string, float 
> etc..) is readily accessible and for every key there is a simple 
> description much of this complexity is eliminated.

I just don't think this is really the significant part of what makes
configuring a system difficult.   Happy to be proved wrong.


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