Configuration is an arrangement of functional units according to their nature, number, and chief characteristics.

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32
votes
8answers
15k views

Should a development machine be inside a VM? [closed]

This post by Rob Conery (note the slug) says that development environment should be run inside a virtual machine. I see what he's saying and tend to agree, but still feel a little uneasy. Now that ...
29
votes
5answers
12k views

Configuration data: single-row table vs. name-value-pair table

Let's say you write an application that can be configured by the user. For storing this "configuration data" into a database, two patterns are commonly used. The single-row table CompanyName | ...
28
votes
8answers
10k views

Is a single config object a bad idea?

In most of my applications, I have a singleton or static "config" object, in charge of reading various settings from disk. Almost all classes use it, for various purposes. Essentially it's just a hash ...
21
votes
3answers
8k views

Should I use a config file or database for storing business rules?

I have recently been reading The Pragmatic Programmer which states that: Details mess up our pristine code—especially if they change frequently. Every time we have to go in and change the code to ...
14
votes
6answers
3k views

When to use Constants vs. Config Files to maintain Configuration

I often fight with myself on whether to put certain keys in my web.config or in a Constants.cs class or something like this. For example if I wanted to store application specific keys for whatever ...
12
votes
3answers
761 views

What is Configuration Management?

In all projects that I have been involved with that have had input from an outside consultant the question has been asked about what sort of Configuration Management we were using. In none of these ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

User Configuration of a Shell Script. Best practices?

I am writing a shell script with a few variables that should be configured by the user. There will be an installer for downloading and configuring the script, possibly by asking a series of question. ...
9
votes
7answers
554 views

Bogarting the Data Access Layer

Situation: The dba is an offsite contractor who keeps the entire DAL code checked out in TFS. It would be nice as the front end developer to be able to add columns, and tweak procs and whatnot, ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

Why don't public web applications use ini files for configuration

Almost every public CMS out there uses a .php configuration file for the database settings and so on. For example WordPress automatically creates a .php config file when you install it. Why don't ...
8
votes
9answers
2k views

Should I pass an object into a constructor, or instantiate in class?

Consider these two examples: Passing an object to a constructor class ExampleA { private $config; public function __construct($config) { $this->config = $config; } } $config = new ...
8
votes
7answers
2k views

Is using something other than XML advisable for my configuration file?

I have a small tool I'm designing which would require a configuration file of some sort. The configuration file in my case is really more of a database, but it needs to be lightweight, and if needed ...
8
votes
5answers
3k views

How to decide between storage formats and what are example use cases for some of them?

We have different ways to store program data (save files in games, employee databases, program configuration etc.): Plain text (think .ini and .conf) XML Databases (MySQL, SQLite...) .zip and ...
7
votes
2answers
632 views

What is best practice to handle whitespaces when letting the user edit the configuration, the name=value pairs?

For instance, you let the user define the notorious path variable. How do you interpret apppath = C:\Program Files\App? This looks like a programming language adopted practice to ignore the white ...
7
votes
7answers
207 views

How to log configuration or code behaviour changes in non-disruptive way [closed]

We've probably all been in the situation where you'd like to alert your team members to some change ("I changed X, so now it's running every hour instead of every day"). But the change is non-urgent, ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Managing large number of app.config files

We have many windows services and web apps which all rely on a lot of common settings. Currently we use just appSettings as needed and they are referenced by key. Some of the settings are app ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Is using SVN for development and CM a bad practice?

I have a bit of experience with SVN as a pure programmer/developer. Within my company, however, we use SVN as our Configuration Management (CM) tool. I thought using SVN for development at the same ...
6
votes
1answer
811 views

LGPL, .lib, .dll, and linking

I am trying to build a project which uses an unmodified copy of libconfig (http://www.hyperrealm.com/libconfig/). libconfig is LGPL, but I don't want to open source any of my code. By my understanding,...
5
votes
2answers
363 views

Should I have a separate XML settings file for my application?

I want to be able to add some objects to my application by simply adding a XML node to a config file. Should I put it in the app.config file or should I make a separate XML config file? A node would ...
5
votes
2answers
292 views

In the context of semantic versioning, does a change in the default configuration warrant a new major version?

My module is enabled by default (i.e. when you add the module). There's also a configuration you can optionally use, which supports an enabled="true|false" setting. This way the module can be disabled ...
5
votes
2answers
969 views

Where to store global enterprise properties?

I'm faced with a crowd of java applications, which need different global enterprise wide properties for operation, for example: hostname of the central RDBMS, hostname and location of the central self-...
5
votes
1answer
349 views

How to load environment configuration

In Java the typical way of storing configuration is by using property files. So I have several such files, one for each environment type (dev, test, prod, ...). This configuration is needed in ...
5
votes
4answers
153 views

Compile time configuration: programmatic or file based?

We need to customize a desktop application at compile time. Users cannot change the configuration. Only developers and release managers can do it. The configuration is a little complex. There are ...
4
votes
6answers
265 views

Company sends debug versions of software to clients

Hey, I'm a Junior Programmer working at a company. I just found out that they've been releasing a debug build of their product to clients for the past four years because the release version is broken ...
4
votes
4answers
395 views

Should an application configuration interface be broken into multiple interfaces to reduce feature creep?

My windows service is neatly separated into 5 components - each with their own interface and pulled together by a bootstrapper. One of my requirements is to provide configuration options in my app....
4
votes
5answers
1k views

What is the preferred way to store application configurations?

Most of the time, I store development application config in root directory of the project, like this: app |-- config.json But that doesn't seem to be the best approach, since this config ends up ...
4
votes
2answers
137 views

How much configurability to give to users regarding concurrency?

This question is a narrowing-down of these related questions: How much effort should we spend to programming for multiple cores? Concurrency: How do you approach the design and debug the ...
4
votes
3answers
184 views

Instantiating class that contains methods to check some of the settings and also return values from my app.config file

I am writing a console application and have a class called ApplicationConfiguration that contains methods to check some of the settings and also return values from my app.config file. For instance ...
4
votes
2answers
946 views

Web services and business rules engines

We have a web service that takes in input different types of messages. The function of the webservice is to merely write in a database the content of the messages. There is about one table (with ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

Config Class/Struct: Pattern or Anti-Pattern? Alternatives?

If you add new configuration options to a program, it can often have tons of ripple effects in terms of getting the options to where they need to be acted upon. There are three basic ways to deal ...
4
votes
0answers
478 views

Caching Strategy: WCF Buffer pooling and size

I am currently trying to understand the best configuration for caching. I am using Azure In-Role caching (currently Colocated, but Dedicated at a later point) in a Web Api 2 application in .NET 4.5.1....
3
votes
6answers
1k views

PHP: A config file in .ini or .php format?

I'm working on a huge CMS system, and I asked myself what configuration format I should use. There are two common formats for configuration files. The first one is an INI file, containg all the ...
3
votes
3answers
208 views

How to best encapsulate features in code and enabling/disabling them at runtime?

I would like to be able to abstract each feature developed by the team in a way that it can be enabled or disabled at runtime by using a distributed shared configuration system. Features are small and ...
3
votes
4answers
321 views

Using configuration to determine whether to handle exception or bubble it up

On a side project I'm working on I came up with a way of handling exceptions that's adjustable by configuration. So a try/catch block might look like this: try { fileHelper.MoveFile(file, ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Where Should I Put Configuration Files?

I'm creating a project that I want to be able to distribute across platforms. I'm writing in Java and AWT which already gives me a pretty large range of devices, but I'm mostly interested in Windows ...
3
votes
3answers
485 views

in C++, how to call an 'init' routine as a class is loaded?

I have a program that loads a bunch of "addons" (different meters that measure and display system values). The "addons" have "grown" over time and the code of what addons to "activate", and how many ...
3
votes
3answers
7k views

Configuration file that can be modified by user in C#

I want to create a configuration file (text file preferred) that can be modified by user. A windows service will read from that file and behave accordingly. Can you recommend a file format for this ...
3
votes
4answers
268 views

What is the “architecture” that provides functionality to application-level URI interfaces, like chrome:// and Firefox's about:config, etc?

According to Wikipedia, about is an internal URI scheme (also known as a "URL scheme" or, erroneously, "protocol") in various web browsers to display certain built-in functions. It is not an ...
3
votes
2answers
127 views

How best to version control massive configuration for an application?

Apologies if this doesn't make sense, English is not my first language. I'm working on an application where workflow is split into 'rules' that are defined on several pages of an Excel spreadsheet, a ...
3
votes
1answer
90 views

Designing configuration for subobjects

I have the following situation: I have a class (let's call it Main) encapsulating a complex process. This class in turn orchestrates a sequence of subalgorithms (AlgoA, AlgoB), each one represented by ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

Best practice for configuration files in a website

I am creating something similar to a Content Management System, that can be downloaded and used by everyone that needs it. I've been working in web-development for a couple of years (mainly as a hobby,...
3
votes
1answer
250 views

How to access environment-specific configuration in an enterprise application?

My application is a generic enterprise application which can be deployed on any application server running on any OS. I don't know how/where to configure my application, except for the database ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

(HTML) Form structure storage

In the context of a single-purpose website/application (for instance, based on Symfony2), I wish to have a set of forms fillable by users which then will be sent out as a formatted email (with the ...
3
votes
3answers
577 views

How to deal with Windows .NET configuration files

We use the normal app.config file for the configuration of the application. Although it works for now it has some pretty significant drawbacks: Upgrading an application with a modified app.config is ...
2
votes
5answers
475 views

Is it plausible to use a filesystem-based configuration format rather than an INI file?

After having had endless issues with INI-style configuration files and parsing them correctly (let along getting binary data right), a crazy idea crossed my mind recently: What if an INI file like # ...
2
votes
1answer
132 views

Should I represent physical accessories of a system as classes in software?

I am redesigning a system comprised of a data-acquisition unit and a lot of different sensors (voltage sensor, angle sensor, pressure sensor, etc.). In the software domain model, there is a base ...
2
votes
2answers
275 views

What values in an application should be configurable?

What values in an application should be configurable, or otherwise not hard coded? Does this differ based on application type (batch vs UI) and are there any published standards or guidance on this ...
2
votes
2answers
331 views

How to separate development process and configuration management aspects of SVN?

I am looking into an alternative for the combined utilities of SVN, as both a development tool and configuration management tool. Instead, I would like to investigate the approach of having a ...
2
votes
2answers
461 views

Where to place configuration files sources

I am developing a C# windows service application, which have different configuration files for development, for production system, for test system, like: Dev.config Test.config Prod.config Now we ...
2
votes
2answers
238 views

Should program behavior be modified using a config file or environmental variables?

I'm referring to *nix command line applications primarily, where you want to permanently modify the behavior from defaults. Environmental variables are easily understood and implemented, usually ...
2
votes
2answers
77 views

Where to put configuration constants?

Considering a small embedded C project, how to decide if certain constants belong to a global configuration file the header of the "module == compilation unit" on top of the the actual C file or ...