Errors during startup

Hal Murray hmurray at
Sat Dec 17 07:19:34 UTC 2016

[was broadcastclient]

esr at said:
>> Should that sort of trap fail to start?  Will users get surprised
>> when they miss the error message or annoyed when they know
>> what to expect but they have to work harder to try it?

> I'm a big fan of failing noisily and early in circumstances like these.

> That said. I don't think it matters very much whether ntpd terminates
> immediately afterwards.  The important thing is that the parse error is
> logged and/or visible on stderr right after startup; it should be made easy
> to notice what has gone wrong. 

There is a general problem in this area.  The normal startup forks and 
detaches from the tty before it processes the config file and gets started so 
all the error messages during startup are not visible even if you are 
watching stuff scroll past.

The typical workstation distro hides the startup logging behind cute 
graphics.  I guess we can assume that the distro has debugged things well 
enough so that's not a problem and that anybody installing our code on their 
own knows how to find the errors.  Maybe we should have a short chunk for 
newbies describing the logging and init scripts and such.

These are my opinions.  I hate spam.

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