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From Dean Gaudet <dgau...@arctic.org>
Subject Re: Future of configuration
Date Mon, 18 Aug 1997 17:26:16 GMT
A month or so ago Doug and I were talking about the functions he needed
from the core to implement the perl config funkiness.  I think we agreed
that if we could change the configuration code to read from a callback
instead of just from a file that he could do everything he needed.  This
is actually very easy to implement (even as a stop-gap before SFIO in 2.0) 
because all configuration code passes around a pseudo-global cmd_parms. 

It would be trivial to add another two fields to that to put in a callback
with arbitrary void *data pointer.  Then only one or two places need to
know about the callback.

This is a desirable change for mod_perl because it would mean mod_perl
needs access to fewer of the core functions.  It could be used to
implement some other config mechanisms ... but I doubt it could be used to
do SNMP.  SNMP mgmt seems like a hard thing to integrate into apache. 

With the way config works in present day apache it is possible to do it
only at start/restart time.  snmp and telnet interfaces would seem really
hard to retrofit... I'm assuming you want to do something while it's live
and running.  And some of the optimizations I mumble about (and have
implemented already) involve doing pre-calculations at config time to save
time in the critical path.  It'd suck to have to redo these calculations
(and respawn all the children) with every line entered in a telnet window
:)  Or maybe I'm confused by what you want. 


On Mon, 18 Aug 1997, Randy Terbush wrote:

> Since Dean just raised the question in gui-dev about "what are 
> ya'll up to" I thought I would post back to this list a brief 
> synopsis of what the 2 or 3 active persons are working on since it 
> is somewhat relevant to discussions about config file syntax.
> Justin Seiferth and Roman Baron have been working on a Java based 
> configuration frontend that Justin originally showed us some time 
> back. http://butler.disa.mil/ApacheConfig/
> My main feedback to what is going on in this list has been an 
> attempt to find a common ground protocol that we can give to any 
> interface developer which would allow any number of text based, 
> Java, Tcl, etc. interfaces and should provide us some portability 
> to other platforms like Win32.
> SNMP seems to me to be the logical choice here as there has been an 
> HTTP MIB under development that I think Harrie Hazewinkel has been 
> involved with. I've not had success reaching Harrie to get his 
> feedback on SNMP issues. Perhaps Dirk knows what's up with Harrie?
> As for how this relates to current discussion about added 
> directives and other configuration languages, I _personally_ think 
> that abstracting the configuration language out of the core would 
> be a good thing. Adding SNMP to manipulate the servers 
> configuration data directly would offer a rather standard API that 
> could even be portable to other web servers given that they could 
> adopt the same public standard. Feedback from Harrie on this issue 
> would be very helpful.
> Given a config API to work with, I personally relish the idea of a 
> telnet accessed config using similar syntax to that of a cisco 
> router.
> On disk storage formats could then be optioned to:
> * SQL database
> * DB format
> * current text format
> * Win32 Registry format (god help us)
> * etc.
> Obviously all 2.0 issues.
> In a nutshell. Comments solicited.
> -Randy

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