[ntp:hackers] Re: Config file format

Poul-Henning Kamp phk at phk.freebsd.dk
Mon Feb 21 12:12:39 PST 2005

In message <421A344A.30205 at cloudview.com>, John Pettitt writes:

>So if we forget how the config gets to the daemon for a moment and look
>at the file format - what's the collective wisdom on my suggestion to
>use the same syntax as isc dhcpd?  

Can I make a pitch here ?

I'm very much in favour of config files and interactive tools using
the same commands, sort of the way cisco routers do it.

Being consistent this way is much easier for the administrator and
requires a lot less documentation.  Today we have three different
syntax'es for "use this NTP server", one for ntp.conf, one for ntpq(8)
and one for ntpdc(8).

The hierarchy style of config files (like named and dhcpd) doesn't
lend itself easily to such a concept, but is the only way to sensibly
handle configuration files which are thousands of lines long.

On the other hand, the average ntpd config file is less than 10
lines long, so we should not need to put a big and complex hierarchy
on it.


Poul-Henning Kamp       | UNIX since Zilog Zeus 3.20
phk at FreeBSD.ORG         | TCP/IP since RFC 956
FreeBSD committer       | BSD since 4.3-tahoe    
Never attribute to malice what can adequately be explained by incompetence.

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