Java Desktop System Configuration Manager Release 1.1 Developer Guide

Chapter 1 Configuration Manager Overview

This chapter provides an overview of the JavaTM Desktop System Configuration Manager, Release 1.1 and an introduction to the concepts needed to create templates for the Configuration Manager.

To introduce a new application to the Configuration Manager, you need to develop templates. You also need to register those templates with the Configuration Manager. Templates are files that contain information about where to store and how to display new configuration settings. The Configuration Manager uses these templates to obtain all necessary information about configuration policies.


The Configuration Manager provides the necessary infrastructure for a centralized configuration of the JavaTM Desktop System. Currently, the Configuration Manager consists of the following client- and server-side components:

Figure 1–1 Client- and server-side components

Client- and server-side components

Configuration Propagation

All policies are stored in a central configuration repository, such as an LDAP server (7). A policy is the term for a group of semantically coherent configuration settings. A Configuration Agent (3), running on each client machine, is responsible for retrieving the policy data from the LDAP server, and for caching the data locally (2). The Configuration Agent periodically checks for any changes on the LDAP server, and updates the cache accordingly. Furthermore, the Configuration Agent sends notifications to all interested applications. Desktop applications, such as StarOffice, Mozilla, Evolution or GNOME, read the policies by means of corresponding adapters (1). These adapters encapsulate the necessary communication with the cache and the Configuration Agent.

Configuration Management

The Configuration Manager (5) is a web-based administration tool that allows you to view, define, and enforce configuration settings on different levels of an organization's hierarchy, such as an organization, group or user level with a web browser. The Configuration Manager is a part of the Java Web Console (4), which provides the necessary infrastructure for all of Sun's administration tools, such as a common web-based graphical user interface (GUI) and single sign-on authentication. The Configuration Manager uses templates (6) to view, define, and enforce configuration settings in the configuration repository and to render the GUI for displaying these configuration settings.