Formatting problems for smptd_recipient_restrictions

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Re: executive parser (was: Re: spf configuration woes)

David Southwell
On Saturday 05 November 2011 22:40:03 Murray S. Kucherawy wrote:

> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: [hidden email]
> > [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of David Southwell
> > Sent: Saturday, November 05, 2011 9:41 AM
> > To: [hidden email]
> > Cc: /dev/rob0
> > Subject: Re: executive parser (was: Re: spf configuration woes)
> >
> > Just to add weight to my last posting - the use of a " " as a critical
> > symbol is really quite idiotic. What cannot be seen should never be that
> > significant!
>
> The current RFC defining email message format is RFC5322, and it uses
> leading whitespace as line continuation in header fields.  Its
> antecedents, going back as far as RFC733 (1977) and perhaps further, do
> the same thing.  Thus, your assertion appears to be in conflict with quite
> a bit of operational history and experience.

I think what is being forgotten here is that administrators have to cope with
a whole variety of software. The history of one narrow sphere (e.g.) mail is
being used to define an approach which does not think of the needs of
administrators who are pushing for software engineers to adopt uniform
approach across the whole spectrum.

Hence thoughtful engineers incorporate diagnostic parsers and html
configuration tools. IMHO postfix has been very slow to develop an apporocah
which places the needs of system administrators in the forefront of its
development strategy.

People make mistakes. Even the most experienced administrators. Administrators
are not primarily programmers. They look at configuration files. During a busy
day they do not want the hassle of having to ask themselves the question "What
do spaces do in this .config .cf file?" Good configuration files make their
formatting requirement obvious. That is why I say the use of " " is, in an
administrator's context, idiotic. It is idiotic because it demands that
adminstrator to ask himself/he
rself the question is this " " significant or insignificant. When there are
hundreds of " " in a file the luckless adminstrator has too much on his/her
plate when trying to fix a problem as quickly as possible.

I have been taking this list silently for years. Amonst a lot of genuinely
helpful contributions I have witnessed a regular splattering of  rudeness and
arrogance by some long standing contributors heaped on the heads of luckless
administrators trying to succesfully configure postfix.

The design of Postfix's configuration system and supporting documentation
represents the honest efforts of people who have a single point of focus
namely:

Making postfix work when it has been given the appropriate configuration data.

IMHO Postfix needs to add to its goals a determination to make configuration a
breeze rather than a challenge. That means diagnostic and corrective parsers
and or an html based configuration interface. Such facilities would cut down
the traffic on this list and stop a few people looking down their noses at
those who make a mistake.





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Re: spf configuration woes

lst_hoe02
In reply to this post by David Southwell-3
Zitat von David Southwell <[hidden email]>:

> On Saturday 05 November 2011 06:42:12 Simon Brereton wrote:
>> On 5 November 2011 08:21, David Southwell <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> > On Saturday 05 November 2011 05:13:22 Wietse Venema wrote:
>> >> David Southwell:
>> >> > Did you read the original posting and the reply from Kamil. He spotted
>> >> > the primary cause. It was he who spotted the extra  " " before
>> >> > policyd-spf in master.cf which was in the part of the post you cut
>> >> > out.
>> >> >
>> >> > So you were right it was an error in the master.cf but noone else
>> >> > spotted it before Kamil made his contribution.
>> >>
>> >> You could have spotted it days ago with lsof/netstat which would
>> >> have told you immediately that postfix was not listening on the
>> >> socket.
>> >>
>> >>       Wietse
>> >
>> > Typical Wietse response. Everyone could see postfix was not listening but
>> > it
>>
>> And Wietse was trying to get you to find out why - instead of making
>> random changes.  He asked you at least twice to run netstat - did you
>> do it?
> yes - I had done it before wietse asked - it was too blindingly obvious
> everyone knew it was not starting. Wietse is too fond of being  
> downright rude.
>
>> It would have saved you 18 hours and at least 3 long mails if
>> you had.  Typically ungrateful response to Wietse's help is more like
>> it.  People come on here, expect it him not only to write it, but keep
>> it secure and spot typgraphical errors in their own configs because
>> they're too lazy to look (and that laziness is exemplified by a
>> laziness to follow a simple diagnostic instruction).
>>
> Misplaced critique. Like wietse you are jumping to conclusions. Assuming the
> worst rather than the best of people. The recomendation came after not before
> the act.
>> > took Kamil's careful scrutiny and knowledge to identify why - knowing why
>> > was what led to the solution.
>>
>> Which you'd have had much much earlier without the hand-holding had
>> you followed Wietse's first request to run netstat.
>
> Sorry but that is B******t! The information about the excess space was there
> --  Wietse just didn't see it unless he was deliberately concealing the fact
> that he knew the excess space was there. That could not be true because he
> would have known that netstat would not have revealed the fact theat  
> there was
> an excess space in the file. What would therefore have been the purpose of
> running netstat?
>
>>
>> > Diagnosis is valuable but without the ability to define the treatment the
>> > diagnosis is merely a matter of record.
>>
>> Only valuable if you follow the steps you're asked to perform.
>> Spoonfeeding and proof-reading your errors in your config files is not
>> diagnosis.
>>
>> > Clearly postfix is  need of an intelligent parser that will to pinpoint
>> > errors such as this in master.cf and main.cf. That is because stupid
>> > computers are better at parsing chores than human beings.
>>
>> Postfix has such a parser - which is why the documentation points out
>> that lines should not start with a white-space.
> Humble humans acknowledge we make errors. Wise humans use stupid computers to
> perform tasks that people are not good at. Stupid humans tell other people
> they are stupid when they make mistakes and tell them RTFM!
>
> You are failing to distinguish between a diagnostic parser and an executive
> parser. An executive parser rejects incorrectly configured lines at runtime.
> A diagnostic parser would tell you that there is an excess space at  
> a specific
> location. A really good executive parser would also log the location of
> incorrectly configured lines to facilitate the work of an administrator.
>
> I do not expect anyone to solve my problems. On the other hand I do  
> not expect
> them to be gratuitously rude rather than helpfully constructive. IF Wietse is
> unable to restrain himself from repeated bouts of arrogant rudeness then,
> IMHO, he needs counselling.
>
> In this case Kemil spotted the error. That helped me spot other errors. Kemil
> was constructive IMHPO Wietse was plain rude.
Another one for the kill-file...
While it might be true that there is room for improvment your tone is  
plain rude. You eat the free meal and demand that it is cooked for  
your taste. Take it or leave it.

Andreas





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Re: spf configuration woes

David Southwell-3
On Sunday 06 November 2011 01:46:35 [hidden email] wrote:

> Zitat von David Southwell <[hidden email]>:
> > On Saturday 05 November 2011 06:42:12 Simon Brereton wrote:
> >> On 5 November 2011 08:21, David Southwell <[hidden email]> wrote:
> >> > On Saturday 05 November 2011 05:13:22 Wietse Venema wrote:
> >> >> David Southwell:
> >> >> > Did you read the original posting and the reply from Kamil. He
> >> >> > spotted the primary cause. It was he who spotted the extra  " "
> >> >> > before policyd-spf in master.cf which was in the part of the post
> >> >> > you cut out.
> >> >> >
> >> >> > So you were right it was an error in the master.cf but noone else
> >> >> > spotted it before Kamil made his contribution.
> >> >>
> >> >> You could have spotted it days ago with lsof/netstat which would
> >> >> have told you immediately that postfix was not listening on the
> >> >> socket.
> >> >>
> >> >>       Wietse
> >> >
> >> > Typical Wietse response. Everyone could see postfix was not listening
> >> > but it
> >>
> >> And Wietse was trying to get you to find out why - instead of making
> >> random changes.  He asked you at least twice to run netstat - did you
> >> do it?
> >
> > yes - I had done it before wietse asked - it was too blindingly obvious
> > everyone knew it was not starting. Wietse is too fond of being
> > downright rude.
> >
> >> It would have saved you 18 hours and at least 3 long mails if
> >> you had.  Typically ungrateful response to Wietse's help is more like
> >> it.  People come on here, expect it him not only to write it, but keep
> >> it secure and spot typgraphical errors in their own configs because
> >> they're too lazy to look (and that laziness is exemplified by a
> >> laziness to follow a simple diagnostic instruction).
> >
> > Misplaced critique. Like wietse you are jumping to conclusions. Assuming
> > the worst rather than the best of people. The recomendation came after
> > not before the act.
> >
> >> > took Kamil's careful scrutiny and knowledge to identify why - knowing
> >> > why was what led to the solution.
> >>
> >> Which you'd have had much much earlier without the hand-holding had
> >> you followed Wietse's first request to run netstat.
> >
> > Sorry but that is B******t! The information about the excess space was
> > there --  Wietse just didn't see it unless he was deliberately
> > concealing the fact that he knew the excess space was there. That could
> > not be true because he would have known that netstat would not have
> > revealed the fact theat there was
> > an excess space in the file. What would therefore have been the purpose
> > of running netstat?
> >
> >> > Diagnosis is valuable but without the ability to define the treatment
> >> > the diagnosis is merely a matter of record.
> >>
> >> Only valuable if you follow the steps you're asked to perform.
> >> Spoonfeeding and proof-reading your errors in your config files is not
> >> diagnosis.
> >>
> >> > Clearly postfix is  need of an intelligent parser that will to
> >> > pinpoint errors such as this in master.cf and main.cf. That is
> >> > because stupid computers are better at parsing chores than human
> >> > beings.
> >>
> >> Postfix has such a parser - which is why the documentation points out
> >> that lines should not start with a white-space.
> >
> > Humble humans acknowledge we make errors. Wise humans use stupid
> > computers to perform tasks that people are not good at. Stupid humans
> > tell other people they are stupid when they make mistakes and tell them
> > RTFM!
> >
> > You are failing to distinguish between a diagnostic parser and an
> > executive parser. An executive parser rejects incorrectly configured
> > lines at runtime. A diagnostic parser would tell you that there is an
> > excess space at a specific
> > location. A really good executive parser would also log the location of
> > incorrectly configured lines to facilitate the work of an administrator.
> >
> > I do not expect anyone to solve my problems. On the other hand I do
> > not expect
> > them to be gratuitously rude rather than helpfully constructive. IF
> > Wietse is unable to restrain himself from repeated bouts of arrogant
> > rudeness then, IMHO, he needs counselling.
> >
> > In this case Kemil spotted the error. That helped me spot other errors.
> > Kemil was constructive IMHPO Wietse was plain rude.
>
> Another one for the kill-file...
> While it might be true that there is room for improvment your tone is
> plain rude. You eat the free meal and demand that it is cooked for
> your taste. Take it or leave it.
>
> Andreas

That is plain B******t. I am making a constructive contribution which, if some
thought and consideration were given to it, might substantially improve
Postfix and make it much more administrator friendly. You may think that the
way Postfix is currently put together is perfect. Well the togh message of the
modern world is that nothing is perfect including Postfix's current system.
Neither am I suggesting the proposal I put forward would make it perfect.
However I do argue it might make it better.

There is no demand here rather than a carefully composed argument and a
recomendation. You may diagree with both. If you are unwilling or do not care  
to have an intelligent dialogue on the merits of an argument then I
respectfully suggest you get out of the kitchen and leave it to those who are,
perhaps, a little more open-minded.


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Re: executive parser

Reindl Harald-2
In reply to this post by David Southwell


Am 06.11.2011 10:22, schrieb David Southwell:
> Hence thoughtful engineers incorporate diagnostic parsers and html
> configuration tools. IMHO postfix has been very slow to develop an apporocah
> which places the needs of system administrators in the forefront of its
> development strategy.

what exactly are you missing what cat, grep, more and tail can not do
with logfiles?

> People make mistakes. Even the most experienced administrators. Administrators
> are not primarily programmers. They look at configuration files. During a busy
> day they do not want the hassle of having to ask themselves the question "What
> do spaces do in this .config .cf file?"

please speak for you and not for "the admininstrators"

> Good configuration files make their  formatting requirement obvious.
> That is why I say the use of " " is, in an administrator's context, idiotic.

i would call idiotic a beginner who is to lazy to learn

> It is idiotic because it demands that adminstrator to ask himself/he
> rself the question is this " " significant or insignificant. When there are
> hundreds of " " in a file the luckless adminstrator has too much on his/her
> plate when trying to fix a problem as quickly as possible.

bullshit if <ou have any problem to see with one look what
the spaces on the following config-snippet are doing you
should stop to play administrator because you are the wrong
person in th wrong job

you can write this all in ONE LINE if you want and the space was
invited to make it more readable

proxy_read_maps = proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-mynetworks.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-mydestination.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-recipients.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-rewritedomains.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-rewritesenders.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-transport.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-sender_relay_hosts.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-sender_relay_hosts_auth.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-aliases.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-senderaccess.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-spamfilter.cf
 proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-forwarders.cf

smtpd_helo_restrictions = permit_mynetworks
 permit_sasl_authenticated
 reject_non_fqdn_helo_hostname
 reject_invalid_helo_hostname
 reject_unknown_helo_hostname

smtpd_recipient_restrictions =
 permit_mynetworks
 reject_non_fqdn_recipient
 reject_non_fqdn_sender
 reject_unlisted_sender
 reject_authenticated_sender_login_mismatch
 permit_sasl_authenticated
 reject_unknown_sender_domain
 reject_unknown_recipient_domain
 reject_unauth_destination
 reject_unknown_reverse_client_hostname
 reject_invalid_hostname
 reject_unauth_pipelining
 check_recipient_access proxy:mysql:/etc/postfix/mysql-spamfilter.cf


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Re: executive parser

Reindl Harald-2
In reply to this post by David Southwell


Am 06.11.2011 10:22, schrieb David Southwell:

> IMHO Postfix needs to add to its goals a determination to make configuration a
> breeze rather than a challenge. That means diagnostic and corrective parsers
> and or an html based configuration interface.

so and now i will tell you that i have started with postfix in summer 2009
at the same time as with dbmail and wrote a html-backend with database
driven configuration and a lot of postfix-options most people never heard of
within two months from scratch - that should show you that the documentation
and logic can not be so bad

on the other hand i would never in my life use any web-interface not written
by my own because they are mostly not as flexible as needed because it
is impossible to do this with any graphical interface


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Re: executive parser

David Southwell-3
On Sunday 06 November 2011 02:29:30 Reindl Harald wrote:

> Am 06.11.2011 10:22, schrieb David Southwell:
> > IMHO Postfix needs to add to its goals a determination to make
> > configuration a breeze rather than a challenge. That means diagnostic
> > and corrective parsers and or an html based configuration interface.
>
> so and now i will tell you that i have started with postfix in summer 2009
> at the same time as with dbmail and wrote a html-backend with database
> driven configuration and a lot of postfix-options most people never heard
> of within two months from scratch - that should show you that the
> documentation and logic can not be so bad
>


Agreed. It is possible to comprehend postfix's documentation given plenty of
time to concemntrate upon it. Unfortunately most administrators cannot give
that degree of attention to every piece of software. The fact that you were
willing to devote the time to that project does, I believe, evidence the need
for a more administrator friendly configuration tool.

I would love to experiemnt with your creation. Any chance of a copy?

> on the other hand i would never in my life use any web-interface not
> written by my own because they are mostly not as flexible as needed
> because it is impossible to do this with any graphical interface

I understand your reservations. It needs a lot of careful and independent
testing to bring such intiatives into common use.

Thanks

david
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Re: spf configuration woes

Reindl Harald-2
In reply to this post by David Southwell-3


Am 06.11.2011 10:34, schrieb David Southwell:
> That is plain B******t. I am making a constructive contribution which, if some
> thought and consideration were given to it, might substantially improve
> Postfix and make it much more administrator friendly.

THIS is plain bullshit

you are telling us that administrators do not understand lines with a space at
the begin, we are telling you if that is true the person has to learn or hurry
up to search another job becasue EVERYBODY who has the right attributes
for this job will understand the config format

a server-software needs not to be "administrator friendly" because there is
really no need that every idiot out there starts thinking he is qualified to
maintain a public mailserver with all it's consequences and looking at the
damage a wrong configured MTA can produce a little election is not so bad


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Re: spf configuration woes

David Southwell-3
On Sunday 06 November 2011 02:43:31 Reindl Harald wrote:
> Am 06.11.2011 10:34, schrieb David Southwell:
> > That is plain B******t. I am making a constructive contribution which, if
> > some thought and consideration were given to it, might substantially
> > improve Postfix and make it much more administrator friendly.
>
> THIS is plain bullshit

I do not agree
>
> you are telling us that administrators do not understand lines with a space
> at the begin, we are telling you if that is true the person has to learn
> or hurry up to search another job becasue EVERYBODY who has the right
> attributes for this job will understand the config format


There is a difference between understanding the potential significant and the
ease of finding an error. What I would suggest is that configuration files are
better designed when a single charactter has a constant meaning. A " " occurs
so frequently that an out of place " " is that much harder to detect when
scanning through a file. Humans are very good at recognising standard
patterns.
>
> a server-software needs not to be "administrator friendly" because there is
> really no need that every idiot out there starts thinking he is qualified
> to maintain a public mailserver with all it's consequences and looking at
> the damage a wrong configured MTA can produce a little election is not so
> bad

There is no benefit in making things a little more difficult than they need me
and then proclaiming that the mistakes that could be prevented by design are
solely due to the person making thenm is IMHO idiotic.
David
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Re: executive parser

Reindl Harald-2
In reply to this post by David Southwell-3


Am 06.11.2011 10:39, schrieb David Southwell:
> Agreed. It is possible to comprehend postfix's documentation given plenty of
> time to concemntrate upon it. Unfortunately most administrators cannot give
> that degree of attention to every piece of software.

than they are doing the wrong job!

> The fact that you were willing to devote the time to that project does,
> I believe, evidence the need for a more administrator friendly configuration
> tool.

no, there are all pieces to make such a interface

but any webinterface for a mailserver would be too generic and somehow
unuseable or too specific for they way what configuration-types are
used in what combinations

> I would love to experiemnt with your creation. Any chance of a copy?

sorry, impossible

based on our internal cms-system and hardly integrated in our
other admin-backends since i am wrtinig every gui on my own

but even if: this does not change that you need to deal with
main.cf / master.cf necause somebody has to tell postfix and
the other mail-components in whcih way they are plaing together
and how the mysql-tables are to use


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Re: spf configuration woes

Reindl Harald-2
In reply to this post by David Southwell-3
would you please be so gently only reply to the list and not
additionally to the post you are answering? your arguments
are not smart enough that there is a need get them all twice


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Re: spf configuration woes

David Southwell-3
On Sunday 06 November 2011 02:54:42 Reindl Harald wrote:
> would you please be so gently only reply to the list and not
> additionally to the post you are answering? your arguments
> are not smart enough that there is a need get them all twice

Quite happy to do that. Mind you it may be possible to ask in a way that does
not demonstrate a determination, fequently expressed on this list, to hammer
into the ground anyone who has the audacity to voice an opinion which does not
accord with the conventional views of over vociferous loyalists.

Forgive me I have been taking this list for more years than I care to mention  
and have seen, what I regard, as  too much rudeness and intolerance. Maybe
that has influenced my approach in this dialogue. I am just fed up with
listening in silence. There is no doubt that Postfix is a great application
but it could be improved and as soon as anyone makes a suggestion there are
far too many people willing to rubbish different approaches than welcome the
committment such voices demonstrate.

Maybe a little more relaxed attitude to alternative points of view might make
this list a lot more attractive.

David

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Re: spf configuration woes

Reindl Harald-2


Am 06.11.2011 11:24, schrieb David Southwell:
> Quite happy to do that. Mind you it may be possible to ask in a way that does
> not demonstrate a determination, fequently expressed on this list, to hammer
> into the ground anyone who has the audacity to voice an opinion which does not
> accord with the conventional views of over vociferous loyalists.

this has nothing to do with loyalists

if things ain't broken don't fix them and what nobody needs is rewrite
perfectly working software / syntax while postfix is since many years
one of the few applications where you can do major upgrades without worry

sorry but i have enough of any ideas rewrite things to make dumb people
lucky as it happened in the linux-world way to often the last few years
with many over a long time working subsystems / layers




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Re: spf configuration woes

David Southwell-3
On Sunday 06 November 2011 03:33:02 Reindl Harald wrote:

> Am 06.11.2011 11:24, schrieb David Southwell:
> > Quite happy to do that. Mind you it may be possible to ask in a way that
> > does not demonstrate a determination, fequently expressed on this list,
> > to hammer into the ground anyone who has the audacity to voice an
> > opinion which does not accord with the conventional views of over
> > vociferous loyalists.
>
> this has nothing to do with loyalists
>
> if things ain't broken don't fix them and what nobody needs is rewrite
> perfectly working software / syntax while postfix is since many years
> one of the few applications where you can do major upgrades without worry
>
> sorry but i have enough of any ideas rewrite things to make dumb people
> lucky as it happened in the linux-world way to often the last few years
> with many over a long time working subsystems / layers
I think you have succeeded in making my point far more effectively than I. The
determination you express is a good demonstration of an attitude that calls
anyone "dumb" if they dare to disagree with their point of view.

If you do not understand that such responses encapsulate an attitude of over
vociferous loyalism, rudeness & intolerance then you are really missing
something. Hopefully you might live long enough to regret such attitudes.

David
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Re: spf configuration woes

Reindl Harald-2


Am 06.11.2011 11:40, schrieb David Southwell:

> On Sunday 06 November 2011 03:33:02 Reindl Harald wrote:
>> Am 06.11.2011 11:24, schrieb David Southwell:
>>> Quite happy to do that. Mind you it may be possible to ask in a way that
>>> does not demonstrate a determination, fequently expressed on this list,
>>> to hammer into the ground anyone who has the audacity to voice an
>>> opinion which does not accord with the conventional views of over
>>> vociferous loyalists.
>>
>> this has nothing to do with loyalists
>>
>> if things ain't broken don't fix them and what nobody needs is rewrite
>> perfectly working software / syntax while postfix is since many years
>> one of the few applications where you can do major upgrades without worry
>>
>> sorry but i have enough of any ideas rewrite things to make dumb people
>> lucky as it happened in the linux-world way to often the last few years
>> with many over a long time working subsystems / layers

> I think you have succeeded in making my point far more effectively than I. The
> determination you express is a good demonstration of an attitude that calls
> anyone "dumb" if they dare to disagree with their point of view.

i know it is not political correct to say the truth

there is no need that everybody needs to believe he is the right
person to maintain every peice of software - some people are having
the skills, the other are able to learn what the need and the rest
can simply use what people with the knowledge are maintaining

> If you do not understand that such responses encapsulate an attitude of over
> vociferous loyalism, rudeness & intolerance then you are really missing
> something. Hopefully you might live long enough to regret such attitudes

BOY YOU WROTE 'That is why I say the use of " " is, in an administrator's context, idiotic.'
adn expect to get answers without rudeness? where do you live?

you should recognize that not all things you do not understand idiotic

and for me: i hope i live NOT long enough to lose the attitude to say things
that have to be said because there are enough people out there speaking
a lot but saying nothing


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Re: spf configuration woes

David Southwell-3
On Sunday 06 November 2011 03:55:45 Reindl Harald wrote:

> Am 06.11.2011 11:40, schrieb David Southwell:
> > On Sunday 06 November 2011 03:33:02 Reindl Harald wrote:
> >> Am 06.11.2011 11:24, schrieb David Southwell:
> >>> Quite happy to do that. Mind you it may be possible to ask in a way
> >>> that does not demonstrate a determination, fequently expressed on this
> >>> list, to hammer into the ground anyone who has the audacity to voice
> >>> an opinion which does not accord with the conventional views of over
> >>> vociferous loyalists.
> >>
> >> this has nothing to do with loyalists
> >>
> >> if things ain't broken don't fix them and what nobody needs is rewrite
> >> perfectly working software / syntax while postfix is since many years
> >> one of the few applications where you can do major upgrades without
> >> worry
> >>
> >> sorry but i have enough of any ideas rewrite things to make dumb people
> >> lucky as it happened in the linux-world way to often the last few years
> >> with many over a long time working subsystems / layers
> >
> > I think you have succeeded in making my point far more effectively than
> > I. The determination you express is a good demonstration of an attitude
> > that calls anyone "dumb" if they dare to disagree with their point of
> > view.
>
> i know it is not political correct to say the truth

When you live a little longer I hope you get to realise that your "truth" is
not necessarily a universal truth. The appreciation of such a point of view is
a sign of maturity. The maligning of alternative opinions and claiming you
have the ability to define what is "right" may IMHO arguably have more to do
with immaturity than anything else.

In regard to what I expect - If you understood the derivation of the word
idiotic you might appreciate its relevance. BUt if you are upset by my use of
the word then I apologise. Maybe it would have been more tactful of me to say
that using a single invisible symbol to fulfill multiple purposes in a file
which is intended to have very precise outcomes appears on the face of it to
be irrational. In configuration files the basic twin rules I would recomend to
you are:
1. one visible symbol - one visible function
2. no invisible symbols

David

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Re: executive parser (was: Re: spf configuration woes)

Simon Brereton-2
In reply to this post by David Southwell
On 6 November 2011 04:22, David Southwell <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On Saturday 05 November 2011 22:40:03 Murray S. Kucherawy wrote:
>> > -----Original Message-----
>> > From: [hidden email]
>> > [mailto:[hidden email]] On Behalf Of David Southwell
>> > Sent: Saturday, November 05, 2011 9:41 AM
>> > To: [hidden email]
>> > Cc: /dev/rob0
>> > Subject: Re: executive parser (was: Re: spf configuration woes)
>> >
>> > Just to add weight to my last posting - the use of a " " as a critical
>> > symbol is really quite idiotic. What cannot be seen should never be that
>> > significant!
>>
>> The current RFC defining email message format is RFC5322, and it uses
>> leading whitespace as line continuation in header fields.  Its
>> antecedents, going back as far as RFC733 (1977) and perhaps further, do
>> the same thing.  Thus, your assertion appears to be in conflict with quite
>> a bit of operational history and experience.
>
> I think what is being forgotten here is that administrators have to cope with
> a whole variety of software. The history of one narrow sphere (e.g.) mail is

I think what is being forgotten here is that YOU were too stupid to
add an spf filter to some of the most widely used MTA SW on the web.
And when you finally figured it out* you chose to be hostile, arrogant
and rude.

figured it out = had your hand held.  Ideally it seems you wanted
someone to write your master.cf for you

It should be noted I installed an SPF policy a few weeks ago - which I
accomplished in less time, with less mails to the list and less coding
experience (and a good deal more reading of the documentation).


> Hence thoughtful engineers incorporate diagnostic parsers and html
> configuration tools. IMHO postfix has been very slow to develop an apporocah
> which places the needs of system administrators in the forefront of its
> development strategy.
>
> People make mistakes. Even the most experienced administrators. Administrators
> are not primarily programmers. They look at configuration files. During a busy
> day they do not want the hassle of having to ask themselves the question "What
> do spaces do in this .config .cf file?" Good configuration files make their
> formatting requirement obvious. That is why I say the use of " " is, in an
> administrator's context, idiotic. It is idiotic because it demands that
> adminstrator to ask himself/he
> rself the question is this " " significant or insignificant. When there are
> hundreds of " " in a file the luckless adminstrator has too much on his/her
> plate when trying to fix a problem as quickly as possible.

Administrators should be asking themselves all the time if something
is significant or not.  Everytime I see an indendation I wonder if
it's supposed to be a space, a run of spaces or a tab.  And what the
effects of aligning them all with tabs might be.  You are clearly not
an administrator.

> I have been taking this list silently for years. Amonst a lot of genuinely
> helpful contributions I have witnessed a regular splattering of  rudeness and
> arrogance by some long standing contributors heaped on the heads of luckless
> administrators trying to succesfully configure postfix.

I had no idea luckless meant to dumb or lazy to follow instructions..
You say you'd run netstat before Wietse asked you to?  That being the
case, why - in either of the responses immediately after that
suggestion did you not simply say "I did that - here's the output".
For the luckless administrator in you I'd like to point out that
ignoring something someone (indeed the only person engaged on issue)
asks you twice to do something and you ignore it that is also rude.
And when you get called on that rudeness you complain?!?


> The design of Postfix's configuration system and supporting documentation
> represents the honest efforts of people who have a single point of focus
> namely:
>
> Making postfix work when it has been given the appropriate configuration data.

As does every other piece of SW in the entire world.

> IMHO Postfix needs to add to its goals a determination to make configuration a
> breeze rather than a challenge. That means diagnostic and corrective parsers
> and or an html based configuration interface. Such facilities would cut down
> the traffic on this list and stop a few people looking down their noses at
> thuose who make a mistake.

You want to make it fool-proof?  You'll only build a better class of
fool to defeat it.
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