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Re: sysinst split project - The Configuration File

On Tue, Dec 15, 2009 at 08:12:45AM +0100, Marc Balmer wrote:
> Instead of splitting/rewritting/ sysinstall or replacing it with  
> bsdinstall, I'd suggest to evolve it:  Add Lua for the configuration  
> and move the logic and user interface from C to Lua, keeping some core  
> functionality of an installer in C, but make it available to Lua.  A  
> good installer would also let me install packages, maybe even meta- 
> packages, so that one of the first questions this installer asks, is:  
> "what kind of system do yo want to install?" and provides me with a  
> selection of meta-packages that are available on the distribution  
> medium (and for which the dependent packages are also available for  
> the architecture given).
> Then the ideal installer would allow interactive operation or complete  
> unattended operation, where installation instructions are give in a  
> file.
> Well, the ideal installer does not yet exist, but ahoka and myself  
> have some loose plans to make exactly this happen...

Hey Marc and all.

Well, I was in doubt after reading the Turing-completeness problem of
configuration vs. scripting and whether or not sysinst.conf should be
Turing complete. But I mulled over it and I think using Lua on the
project would be a good thing. One of the advantages of it is that we
could trust the Lua parser, so it would not be necessary to create one
more parser in Lex & Yacc as I previously suggested (although I'd love
to do that :-P).

Bringing Lua wields a bigger question: shouldn't NetBSD import to its
tree, a powerful general-purpose interpreter? (sh, ksh, awk, bc, etc.,
are not general-purpose). Why not just import Lua to the base system so
people can built projects on it, like sysinst? Just an idea.

I've already used Lua embedded in a C++ program, not too much, but in a
level enough to note that it works great and glue very well.

Your ideas for sysinst are great. I would love to help on this project!

Well, I'm not going to repost all the XML pro and cons that people
posted here, but I disagree with the adoption of XML. However, since I'm
much worried about helping bringing a new sysinst to live, I'll work on
any solution, whatsoever.

Couldn't sysinst import/export from/to both formats, human-readable (Lua
script or another) and XML? That would solve the controversy, but it may
be difficult to maintain support for two different standards.

Thank you very much!

Silas Silva

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