Brion Vibber | 22 Nov 16:38 2005
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Re: Page access restiction (resend)

Rob Lanphier wrote:
> If someone were to get gung-ho about implementing access control
> measures in MediaWiki that go way beyond the immediate needs of
> Wikipedia, would you prefer that that person/group:
> 
> A.  Submit patches for inclusion in mainline MediaWiki
> B.  Submit patches to extend the MediaWiki core to allow for a security
> layer
> C.  Submit patches to modularize/wrap some MediaWiki components (e.g.
> the parser) in a way that they can be used as libraries for an otherwise
> forked/rewritten wiki product
> D.  Fork MediaWiki

The main thing is that we (at least I ;) don't want to have to maintain
code that's totally useless to us, and a security layer adds maintenance
obligations to that useless-to-us code (if there's a hole, we have to
patch it and issue new releases, and if it exists people are more likely
to want to rely on it, increasing the weight of the obligation). Thus my
knee-jerk reaction is D; if somebody wants to maintain such a beast, let
them.

B. is possibly appropriate though; I hacked in the AuthPlugin so people
could work on things like the LDAP and other custom authentication
interop things separately from the main code, without adding too much to
the core code complexity (and others have helped improve it, and it
could probably still use improvement ;)

It _might_ make sense to have a similar access control interface which
can then be plugged in, though I'm not sure how much plugging would
really need to be done if the infrastructure for all the plug points
would actually be there.

Jej wrote:
> So my choice would be a fifth... E. To write some specifications from
> needs, abstract the problem, and start a new project :) Any ideas ?!...

Specs and abstractions are always nice to have before one starts. ;)

-- brion vibber (brion  <at>  pobox.com)

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