[darcs-users] Re: Darcs and a single developer working on multiple workstations

goran.krampe at bluefish.se goran.krampe at bluefish.se
Tue Mar 29 09:13:07 UTC 2005

Hi people!

Max Battcher <me at worldmaker.net> wrote:
> Aaron Denney wrote:
> > Not really.  It's more like saying darcs shouldn't bother to be an ssh
> > client if it can get that functionality from another source.  We want
> > a system including darcs to have certain functionalities.  Often the
> > easiest and most flexible way to get that functionality is to put it
> > in the rest of the system.  Sendmail and other MTAs have a lot more
> > flexibility, including working behind proxies, handling sporadicaly
> > connected systems, etc.  Properly implementing a ful-blown SMTP client
> > isn't trivial, and requires more than just speaking SMTP -- we also need
> > a DNS client to lookup MXs, an option to retry the other servers when
> > one is down, a queueing mechanism so that the user can get back to work
> > rather than waiting for that shell to become available, etc.  Calling 
> > sendmail (whether it's implemented via qmail, postfix, or exim, it's the
> > standard interface) gets us all of that and more, for free.
> That still doesn't mean it is not a good idea for when sendmail or MAPI
> fails (particularly when MAPI fails, as it is prone to do) falling back
> on "simple Haskell SMTP" for final fallback, particularly if you can
> find someone who has already written one (as one of the parents posted a
> quick link).  Sure, it could fail, but it helps with cross-platform woes
> (non-unix systems rarely have a sendmail) and makes it that much easier
> to work "out of the box".
> The only real complaint is one of code bloat, but in most cases it is
> simply a matter of not building that part of it if you don't need it,
> which is what configure is for.

Squeak (which is a super crossplatform Smalltalk) has code for SMTP
delivery in the standard image (and hey, the code is trivial) and we use
it for really easy bug reports and the equivalence of "darcs send" for a
simple way of sharing improvements and fixes. The code just asks the
user for a server and a "from" email.

I can't say we have seen any problems with that approach, and it has
been used for several years by hundreds if not thousands of people on
all the major OSes.

This doesn't mean that darcs shouldn't use other means *first* of
course. :)

regards, Göran

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