FreeBSD in Dixons

Dominic Mitchell dom at
Sat Mar 11 00:09:31 GMT 2000

On Fri, Mar 10, 2000 at 08:35:30AM +0000, Brian Somers wrote:
> I can supply configs for a lot of these services for Demon, 
> Force9, Pavilion and BT.  It's interesting though, I think what we 
> actually need is a script/program that will generate the config files 
> based on a database of "isp specifics".  These specifics would 
> contain things like phone numbers, dial strings, DNS negotiation flags,
> web proxy name, news server name, newsfeed or inews style posting, 
> hostname or domain and finally, services supported.  The script would 
> then get some generic templates, prompt for account specifics (if not 
> supplied on the command line) and build the requisite config files.

You mean a wizard.  :-)

> So, how about
>    /usr/share/isp/defaults
>    /usr/share/isp/uk/defaults
>    /usr/share/isp/uk/pavilion
>    /usr/share/isp/uk/demon
>    /usr/share/isp/uk/bt
>    /usr/share/isp/uk/force9
> etc ?  These files would contain the standard bourne shell variable 
> assignments, and then there'd be
>    genconfig [-pnmlis] [otheroptions]
> where the above flags generate configurations for ppp, named, mail, 
> leafnode, innd and squid respectively.  We'd also want flags like 
> -d domain to auto-specify your domain etc.
> Any interest in something like this ?

Sounds like an excellent idea.  Whilst one can shoehorn everything into
one big ppp.conf and call it as necessary, the other config files would
be a lot more difficult.

> I think the main thing here is to make it easy to add new options - 
> for example:
> /usr/share/isp/uk/someisp
>   phone=1234567
>   services=ppp
> Would tell the program that it can generate a ppp.conf with the 
> standard template and only the phone number specified.  It would then 
> prompt for your authname/authkey and ask if you want to use a login 
> script (it would generate one with \\U & \\P).  Or
> /usr/share/isp/uk/demon
>   phone=1234567
>   pppdns=false
>   services=ppp,squid,leafnode
> where it prompts for your host/domain, authname and authkey, and allows 
> you to configure squid using the given proxy) and leafnode using the 
> standard news.domain.

This sounds more and more interesting.  Why didn't somebody do this
years ago?

I'll have a go at throwing together a sample implementation tonight
(it's only midnight and I'm bored :) and see what I come up with.


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