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Suggestion: amendments to the Cederqvist manual

From: Don Schneider
Subject: Suggestion: amendments to the Cederqvist manual
Date: Fri, 5 Jan 2001 10:13:25 -0800

I am not a subscriber to this email list, so please accept my apologies if this has been well covered already or is the wrong forum. Also, please include me specifically if any follow up from me is needed or desired.

The Cederqvist CVS manual at http://cvshome.org/docs/manual/cvs_2.html#SEC28 describes how to set up CVS for use with rsh. I found one error of omission, would like to suggest a minor change in the example, and believe a new section is needed.

First: to get rsh to work (at least on my Linux-Mandrake), it is necessary to set the permissions of the .rhosts file to user read/write ("chmod 600 .rhosts"). The manual goes into great detail about how to configure a system to use rsh, but does not mention this.

Second: I found the perspective of the rsh example inverted:

"For example, suppose you are the user `mozart' on the local machine `toe.example.com', and the server machine is `faun.example.org'."

I was configuring a machine to act as a CVS server; in my mind, that is the local machine, and the people accessing it are remote. The obscurity of the names used in the example are ambiguous, which makes the example less accessible. Thus, I propose the example should read:

"For example, suppose you are the user `remote_user' on the machine `remote.example.com', and the user 'local_cvs_user' has CVS permissions on the server machine `cvsserver.example.org'."

(The body of the example would need to be updated to correspond to the new nomenclature as well.)

Finally: I believe the standard mechanism for setting up a secure CVS server currently is to use ssh rather than rsh (since every document on security I have seen cites disabling rsh and its brethren as one of the very first steps towards security). The CVS manual is very brief in its description of how to use ssh ("If you set CVS_RSH to SSH or some other rsh replacement, the instructions in the rest of this section concerning `.rhosts' and so on are likely to be inapplicable; consult the documentation for your rsh replacement"). This should be more complete.

Thank you for your time.

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