RFE: a bit more flexibility in handling modified files (conffile prompt)

Bug #67382 reported by Brian J. Murrell on 2006-10-21
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
update-manager (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

I just finished doing an update of gdm through update-manager. I was thoroughly impressed with the fact that I got a graphical "keep/replace" window complete with a diff of the gdm.conf file which I had previously edited. Can I make a couple of suggestions to enhance that experience?

1) a "side-by-side" diff (i.e. like vim -d) will probably be more intuitive for users not familiar with looking at context diffs
2) in fact, giving the option to opening a vim -d (like) window with both files where you can easily edit the .dpkg-new to match the changes you made to the existing file would be superb
3) is it feasible to keep a copy of all configuration files in a package so that when upgrade time comes and apt detects a file has been changed, it has a pristine copy it can produce a diff against and try to apply that same diff to the new file -- all with user interaction and confirmation of course
  - perhaps a repository of pristine files can be kept which apt can go and fetch a pristine copy for a diff
4) the "cats ass" would be a kind of interface built on the above where a graphical interface shows each of the diffs in a side-by-side mode from the patch produced from (3) and a checkbox for which ones to try to apply


Michael Vogt (mvo) on 2006-10-23
Changed in update-manager:
importance: Undecided → Wishlist
status: Unconfirmed → Confirmed
Colin Watson (cjwatson) wrote :

Along similar lines, a friend pointed out on IRC that update-manager's graphical conffile prompt window ought to offer at least all the options that dpkg's standard conffile prompt does (possibly except for starting a new shell to examine the situation). It doesn't seem to let you show the old/new files or to edit the file.

Przemek K. (azrael) wrote :

I'd second the last comment - currently the CLI dist-upgrade has much more options to handle differing files than GUI update-manager. At least the option to edit the file manually should be added.

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