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Server side gui?

 
Aruna Raghavan
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Hi,
Is anyone doing a gui for the server side? Just curious...
Aruna.
 
Daniela Ch
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do a search on "server gui"
I know Mark did...
 
Aruna Raghavan
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Daniela,
Thanks for your email the other day.
I just read the requirements again. It does not appear to be necessary to do a GUI for the server.
Have you done it?
Aruna.
 
Daniela Ch
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no...
ppl do a gui on the server to be able to execute some code before it shuts down...
how do you stop your server?
 
Peter den Haan
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Warning: my not-too-subtle opinion on this matter has been influenced by real-world experiences with server systems that had a GUI.
My advice would be not to implement a server GUI. The reasons are
  • Contrary to popular belief, GUIs are in many cases (including this one) not more user-friendly than text interfaces. They are more beginner-friendly, but that is something different altogether. It never fails to amaze me that in this industry "user-friendly" and "beginner-friendly" are so often confused.
  • Servers should be scriptable so that they can be started, stopped and managed automatically. Scripting a GUI is hard or impossible.
  • On Unix systems, a GUI requires the presence of an X server. A lot of serious server iron does not even have a graphics card, let alone an X server. And I can tell you from bitter experience that simply pointing the server at an external X workstation is a bad, bad idea.
  • For these reasons, if there is a GUI, it should be optional. Full stop. And that is likely to be more trouble than you want to go through.
    - Peter
     
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