How do you control your background services in Linux? Purists will probably say that renaming the symlinks in the rc folders is the way to go, but for me that’s a pain in the ass. I much more prefer some simple app where I could just click bunch of check-boxes on a single page to enable and disable starting up of various apps at different run levels. KDE has a built in tool for this called KSysV but it’s UI is atrocious. I mean, please check out this screenshot and tell me – does that look like a clean UI design?
What the hell were they smoking? It actually takes you a minute or two to realize that you disable applications by dragging and dripping their respective icons to the recycle bin icon in the corner. I guess it makes management of the services a bit easier but it could be much cleaner.
I recently discovered sysv-rc-conf app that actually manages to nail the simplistic service management paradigm I was really looking for – by using freaking checkboxes:
It’s not often that a curses utility written in perl completely owns a polished KDE app on clarity, usability and UI design. But this is exactly what we have here. You don’t want the service to run, you un-check the box. No dragging and no dropping stuff between boxes, searching and etc. Just pick an app, go across and check or un-check boxes as needed. And if you want more control, just run it with -p and you will get into the priority mode:
Here you can actually edit the K and S records for each app on each run level. Now, KSysV might have some a bit more functionality, but sysv-rc-conf is simple, powerful and easy to use.
My Dapper installation didn’t have it installed by default, but I found it in the universe/admin repositories. You can get it by doing:
apt-get install sysv-rc-conf
aptitude install sysv-rc-conf
What is your favorite tool for managing SysV stuff? Let me know in the comments!