What constitutes "user configuration files" in the XDG basedir spec?

Dieter Plaetinck dieter at plaetinck.be
Mon Mar 2 13:12:08 PST 2009

On Fri, 27 Feb 2009 15:43:21 +0100
Vincent Untz <vuntz at gnome.org> wrote:

> Le mardi 24 février 2009, à 22:01 +0100, Axel Liljencrantz a écrit :
> > 2009/2/9 Dieter Plaetinck <dieter at plaetinck.be>
> > > Actually I think your "state vs configs" splitup is a very similar
> > > approach to my suggested "settings as configured by user/on
> > > behalf of user versus settings on behalf of the application
> > > itself" splitup at
> > > http://lists.freedesktop.org/archives/xdg/2009-January/010157.html
> > >
> > >
> > > In practice, all settings that an app would like to store without
> > > explicitly requested by the user can probably all be categorised
> > > under state, so our ideas are very similar.
> > >
> > > Your wording is probably better then mine, so a huge +1 from me
> > > for adding a 4th concept 'state' to the current list of cache,
> > > configs and data.
> > >
> > 
> > Am I correct in interpreting the above discussion as in the
> > consensus being that for now, what you refer to as state should be
> > saved in the .config directory, and that a future xdg version may
> > separate it into a third directory, perhaps to be named .state?
> I actually didn't feel there was consensus on this. My main worry is
> that I'm not sure it's worth the effort for app developers to do that,
> so this might not work.

Ah sh*t, just read on your blog you were @ Fosdem, if I had known I
would loved to discuss this in person.  (maybe I even met you without
knowing because I visited the Gnome stand :)

There was indeed no real consensus, likey because (imho)
this discussion went off a bit on the wrong foot.  I think since
Guillem shared his thoughts about the "state" ideas we hit a
breakthrough. (but there hasn't been much response since).
Personally I think the concept of "state" makes much sense, and we
would be better off separating it from config.
Note that I don't care much if that separation means "a separate file
in the already existing .config directory" , or "a new directory".
Imho state should just not be in the same file as configs, all the rest
is details.

> And I'm also not convinced that you have a
> clear line between "state" and "config" -- it will be blurry in quite
> some cases.
> Vincent

It's always hard to define those things in words, but I think the
wordings @ 
are quite good. (and plenty of examples).

I'm trying to hard to find the use cases where it may become blurry.
I was thinking of an ftp client: if you store a recently
visited ftp server it could be state, but it contains a password so you
might call it data as well.  OTOH if you think the password is that
important you could make a "bookmark" and then it would be data, this
is a good solution I think.

Can you come up with examples where it might blur?


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