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+ - Take This GUI and Shove It-> 1

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snydeq
snydeq writes "Deep End's Paul Venezia speaks out against the overemphasis on GUIs in today's admin tools, saying that GUIs are fine and necessary in many cases, but only after a complete CLI is in place, and that they cannot interfere with the use of the CLI, only complement it. Otherwise, the GUI simply makes easy things easy and hard things much harder. 'If you have to make significant, identical changes to a bunch of Linux servers, is it easier to log into them one-by-one and run through a GUI or text-menu tool, or write a quick shell script that hits each box and either makes the changes or simply pulls down a few new config files and restarts some services?' Venezia writes. 'And it's not just about conservation of effort — it's also about accuracy. If you write a script, you're certain that the changes made will be identical on each box. If you're doing them all by hand, you aren't.'"
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Take This GUI and Shove It

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  • and, to extend the example, aside from "which is easier", I don't know how many times I've had to iterate on a task in a GUI that had no CLI for a specific repeatable task. So, not only would a CLI that I could have scripted been easier, and more accurate (same script, same change everywhere), but I could save orders of magnitude in time (typically 2 -- yes, 100x faster to script).

What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite. -- Bertrand Russell, "Skeptical Essays", 1928

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