One thing I hate about Linux: cron
31 March 2008
First of all, I understand that the problem cron solves is a hard one but come on, it's been many years now without much progress. At least not in the usability field of cron jobs. Secondly, I don't know of an operating system that does this better. Perhaps there is one. All I'm saying here is that this aspect of Linux sucks. The issues I have with cron are:
Beef number 1
Is it root, user1 or user2 running a crontab job? I'll have to
su into each suspected user and run
crontab -l. Granted, some jobs require root access and others don't but it nevertheless makes it hard to find the configured jobs when maintaining someones server.
Beef number 2
Even though they do such a similar thing, it feels like
/etc/cron.* is a different battlefield from
crontab. Why can't this all be in one coherent place?
Beef number 3 The crontab syntax. How difficult would it be to allow an interface to accept user input as "every 10 minutes" or "01.30 every day"?
Beef number 4
With there being 12 different ways (sarcasm) to write cron job scripts there's no coherent place to collect all log and errors that happen from cron. Couldn't it be default to always write to
/var/log/cron/access.log and all executions that cause a write to
stderr could append to
I don't think Anacron would make me any happier since the problem Anacron solves was not one of the problems I listed above. And lastly, I wouldn't be surprised if there's a semi-abandoned Open Source project on SourceForge that is user friendly but what I'm after is something to get into stock Linux. Kind of like apt/aptitude/dselect is for dpkg maybe?