Re: Moving to *Avahi* over howl

On Mon, 2005-09-19 at 12:44 -0400, JP Rosevear wrote:

> > Since DNS-SD is pretty close to the system-level its not at all
> > unreasonable that we should use the system-specific implementation. On
> > the other hand, Avahi clearly looks like the best choice on Linux and
> > other free UNIXes, so almost all Gnome users would use that, and would
> > pay for the extra layer unnecessarily.
> You also arguing against using something "uncondtionally" above, which
> is exactly what you are promoting here.
> It would seem in cases where we've had different implementations in the
> past, or multiple implementations of the same thing, this would suggest
> an opportunity for an abstraction layer.

I'm not arguing that an abstraction layer for this is inherently bad. In
the end it might be the right thing to do. But there are several open
issues here, such as:

In what library would the abstraction layer live?

Adding a new library for something like this does cause a form of bloat,
both in build complexity and the need to load/link more libraries.
Adding it to an existing library is complex since that would add more
dependencies to that library which isn't always very nice.

Who would design and write it? Who would maintain it?

My guess is that the best people to do this are the people writing
Avahi, but I doubt they are interested in doing this work (as its really
just a way to not use their Avahi APIs). Maybe we can get someone else
to write and maintain it, but its not like we have an infinite supply of
people to do duplicate work.

Do all implementations have the same features, or do we have to cater to
a least common denominator?

It seems like this is not really the case, at least some comments in
this thread says Avahi is more powerful. A least common denominator
gives us a less powerful API and possibly a less featurefull desktop.
And there is a risk that apps start using Avahi anyway as they need some
feature, and then we're not portable anymore.

 Alexander Larsson                                            Red Hat, Inc 
                   alexl redhat com    alla lysator liu se 
He's a genetically engineered alcoholic cowboy who dotes on his loving old ma. 
She's a foxy nymphomaniac mercenary from Mars. They fight crime! 

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