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[Spacewalk-list] How to update running applications?



Dear all,

I'm having a difficult time in finding the correct forum to pose this question since I guess it's part spacewalk, part RPM, part basic aplication design.

Being an RPM end-user for years I had always assumed that updating running apps was a piece of cake with RPM. After all, I always did it and the most I got were occasional messages such as "Firefox restart required", never encountering other side-effects.

However, after reading through the RPM guide, getting my hands dirty trying to package an app, scouring the internet for info and asking around in the RPM mailing list, I'm still not sure how to write my RPM so updating won't be an issue.

The scenario is the following: I'd like to use spacewalk to distribute a custom desktop app. Hence, it's unavoidable that some users will be working at the time of an update. So far I've identified two problems with this, 1) If I have to modify the app's database schema as part of the update, the running app might break down if it's not aware of the change 2) This happens to be a java app, so in case a jar gets updated a class might get loaded that is not compatible with those already loaded by the running app.

I understand that what I've explained so far might be outside of the scope of the subjects treated in this mailing list, if so, please just treat it as a detailed background problem description.

What I would like to know from you guys is whether you've had any problems when updating apps through Satellite/Spacewalk due to them being running at the time or what precautions (if any) you take when doing so.

Finally, I suppose that as a last resort I could hack the spacewalk client to only download updates and not install them until it is told to do so from the command line. Is this already possible? If not, where's the place to start with hacking this?

I thank you all for your time and attention. It'd be amazing if you had any comments regarding my background issue, but I'll be more than satisfied and grateful if you could just provide any feedback on those questions strictly spacewalk-related.

Thanks.

Adrián.


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