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.

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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.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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