JSEA  Vol.8 No.4 , April 2015
Automatic Synchronization of Common Parameters in Configuration Files
In an information system, applications often make use of services that they access using the parameters described in their configuration files. Various applications then use different codes to denote the same parameters. When access parameters of a service are modified, it is necessary to update them in every configuration file using them. These changes are necessary, for example because of security policies involving regular changes of passwords, or departure of some system administrators. The database password could be changed for example. When system administrators can not immediately identify all services affected by a change or when they feel they don’t have the skills to edit these files, these parameters remain unchanged, creating critical security flaws. This was observed in more than 80% of the organizations we studied. It then becomes necessary to ensure automatic synchronization of all affected files when changing certain settings. Conventional synchronization solutions are difficult to apply when the relevant applications have already been developed by third parties. In this paper, we propose and implement a solution to automatically update all configuration files affected by a change, respecting their structure and codification. It combines a parameters database, a mapping between the configuration files parameters codes and those of the database, and templates for the generation of files. It achieves the objective for all non-encrypted configuration files.

Cite this paper
Emmanuel, M. and Ibrahim, M. (2015) Automatic Synchronization of Common Parameters in Configuration Files. Journal of Software Engineering and Applications, 8, 192-200. doi: 10.4236/jsea.2015.84020.
[1]   Tridgell, A. and MacKerras, P. (2002) The Rsync algorithm. Academic Press, Cambridge.

[2]   Ramsey, N. and Csirmaz, E. (2001) An Algebraic Approach to File Synchronization. Proceedings of the 9th ACM International Symposium on Foundations of Software Engineering, 175-185.

[3]   Balasubramaniam, S. and Pierce, B. (1998) What Is a File Synchronizer? Proceedings of the ACM/IEEE MOBICOM 98 Conference, 1998, 98-108.

[4]   Basso, M. and Mann. J. (2013) MarketScope for Enterprise File Synchronization and Sharing. Gartner.

[5]   Tridgell, A. (2000) Efficient Algorithms for Sorting and Synchronization. Ph.D. Dissertation, The Australian National University, Canberra.

[6]   Torsten, S. and Memon, N. (1996) Algorithms for Delta Compression and Remote File Synch-ronization. Technical Report TR-CS-96-05.

[7]   Rasch, D. and Burns, R. (2003) In-Place Rsync: File Synchronization for Mobile and Wireless Devices. Proceedings of the USENIX Annual Technical Conference, 2003.

[8]   Suel, T., Noel, P. and Trendaflov, D. (2004) Improved File Synchronization Techniques for Maintaining Large Replicated Collections over Slow Networks. Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Data Engineering, 30 March-2 April 2004, 153-164. http://dx.doi.org/10.1109/ICDE.2004.1319992

[9]   (2014) Hyena. Shared Settings. http://www.systemtools.com/HyenaHelp/sharedsettings.htm

[10]   Hass, A.M. (2002) Configuration Management Principles and Practice. DELTA.