ANNOUNCE: Helix Setup Tools 0.2.1

About this release

The Helix Setup Tools 0.2.1, aka "Suspicion breeds Confidence", are out.

This is a working snapshot of a continuous effort, and the project is still
in its infancy. As such, there are no guarantees of usability, beauty or
evil masterplan compliance.

However, the probability that you'll actually corrupt or lose any part of
your system configuration due to a programming mistake is very low. We've
tested all the features of all the tools on our own workstations (and the
workstations of some innocent bystanders), and we didn't harm even one of

This is mostly a bugfix release, dealing with some of the concerns you had
with 0.2.0. We'd like to thank everyone who contributed with comments and
patches to that release. Keep it up!

This release also makes use of Red Hat's consolehelper to prompt for a root
password if needed. We're working on a more generic solution to this.

Tools in this release

Networking       Configures your primary network adapter for TCP/IP.
Name Resolution  Hostname, domain, DNS, WINS, statichosts, search, workgroup.
Memory           Swap partitions and files.
Time             System clock, timezone, timeserver synchronization.
Users            Users and groups.
Disks            Find local harddisk partitions and mount them.
Shares           NFS, SMB. Export, detect, import.


We need help, in particular to test these tools and port them to as many
Unixy platforms and distributions as possible.

If this seems like a worthy challenge, please get in touch with us. Further
information can be found in the references section below.

Also, if you have any problems with these tools (identified in detail or
not), we'd be absolutely delighted to hear from you.

Changes since 0.2.0

- Ability to change users' passwords in Users, even with MD5 enabled.
  [Arturo, Tambet]

- Debian adaption for Name Resolution backend. [Michael Vogt]

- Fixes to build system. [Mathieu Lacage]

- Aesthetic improvements to EMap, used for timezone selection in Time.
  [Hans Petter]

- Wrote and added README, NEWS, AUTHORS and HACKING files to the
  distribution. [Hans Petter]

- Made Users XML handling more robust. [Tambet]

- Fixed problem arising when Users backend got empty logindefs keys, which
  lead to some crashes. [Young-Ho Cha]

- More intuitive IP entry in Networking. [Peter Hawkins]

- Massive translation work. [The GNOME translation team]

- I18n enabled in all frontends, shortcoming pointed out by Robert Vanyi.
  [Hans Petter]

- Graphical root authentication when started from GNOME panel menu, works
  through Red Hat's consolehelper. [Hans Petter]

About the Helix Setup Tools

- Primary audience - desktop users:

  These tools are intended to simplify the tasks of configuring a Unix system
  for workstations. They are not intended for configuring Unix servers.

- Unified system configuration:

  Configuring different Unix systems is different; every Unix system has
  different ways of being administrated. The Helix Setup Tools aspire to
  unify handling of these systems.

- Adaptability:

  Each one of the Helix Setup Tools is split in two parts: a backend (which
  is typically written in Perl) and a user interface frontend (which is
  typically written in C or Python).

  The backends are written in a way that should allow us to quickly adapt
  them to different flavors of Unix; the backend probes your system and
  parses the existing system files. When the user has finished editing the
  settings, the configuration is written back as patches to the system files.

  This means that the Helix Setup Tools use whatever configuration files are
  available on your system, and you can still edit those files by hand or
  with other configuration tools without conflicts or data loss.




Mailing list:


GNOME CVS:    Module "helix-setup-tools".

Developers:   Hans Petter Jansson <hpj helixcode com>
              Arturo Espinosa <arturo helixcode com>
              Tambet Ingo <tambeti sa ee>

Hans Petter

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