Default the best practices into a KP install

develop1
2012-10-19
2012-11-20
  • develop1

    develop1 - 2012-10-19

    time and time and time again there are forum postings of people in trouble and requesting help.
    The basic issue is always:
      "xyz" happened
       some or all of their data entry is lost
       and they have no backups.

    Throughout the years, Dominik and others have acknowledged that having backups of ones datafile is important.
    However despite this belief the default install of KP does not include an automated multiplex save command. 
    Instead, this ability has been delegated to the roll of "pluggins".
    Un-fortunately the existence pluggins are NOT well known
    what is worse, is even if a user learns of pluggins and they are motivated to go find them
    when the get to the pluggin page they are immediately greeted with a dire spooky red/pink warning.

    If you read this warning you could walk away thinking that pluggins are the wild-wild west
    and that  some, if not all pluggins are written by evil hackers bent on stealing  your data. 
    Its unfortunate there is not a single pluggin deemed safe but rather everything is offered caveat-emptor.

    I really believe that KP is doing itself a dis-service by not making the default install
    of KP include all the elements needed to properly safeguard every byte of the user's data entry.

    In my opinion multiplexing the save (write to disk) of the data file to two more locations is critical to a best practice backup strategy.
    There already exists a pluggin to accomplish this task.
    Ideally this should be built into natively into the KP kernel but if we can not have that,  can we at least get that pluggin bundled into the download/default install?

    In my opinion maintaining  "x" versions of history  for the entire physical data file written to disk is critical to a best practice backup strategy. 
    There already exists a pluggin to accomplish this task.
    Ideally this should be built into natively into the KP kernel but if we can not have that,  can we at least get that pluggin bundled into the download/default install?

    In my opinion, the Autosave trigger functionality should be pre-written for the user by the install process and enabled by default. 
    There has been many occurances of users doing data entry, clicking "OK" and not aware that their data does not yet exist on disk, if they lose power they lose everything.
    I do not fault the users for being un-aware of this risk.
    For most windows apps, the "OK" button means you accept the data entry, the cancel button means you do not. 
    Once the user has accepted their changes who could fault them for not thinking that they already authorized KP to use (and save)  what they just accepted.

    The items listed above are just those best practices to safeguard  the dataentry of the user so information is never lost.

    There are a bunch of forum  users who's bacon would have been saved had they followed a best practices model.
    If KP would install with best practices which are turned on by default then us mere mortals would be highly protected from disaster.

    I am sure there are many power users that feel the above safe guards are not for them.
    These same power users however are skilled people.
    Power users would quickly/easily be able to turn off multiplexed writes if they dont' want them,
    they can disable datafile version control if they don't want it
    and they can disable flushing to disk data entry upon the "OK" acceptance.

    Power users are un-likely to complain to the forum that "xyz" happened - and they lost their data entry and have no backup.

    However the mere mortals among us might not know that KP is saving to disk our data entry automatically
    nor know that the save is multiplexed to two locations
    nor know that 'x' versions of historical datafiles are being maintained
    - but by golly if the average joe isn't aware of it they sure would be appreciative of it
       when disaster strikes and the forum tells them that KP had their back
       the whole time and they likely have several recovery options available to them.

    Does anyone agree and/or have other thoughts as to if its wise to "default the best practices into a KP install" ?

     
  • Paul

    Paul - 2012-10-20

    I can see your point, but I think your suggestion goes too far. It should be up to the user to backup their data, we can only advise.
    I would change the default KeePass behaviour to automatically save when a change has been made to an entry, assuming history is on by default.
    I would include a warning / advice screen - that you can disable - that offers to make a backup when the user attempts to change the master key.
    It may also be worth having a backup reminder pop-up when a new database is created. Every new user creates a new database so this seem to be the correct place for the advice.

    cheers, Paul

     
  • develop1

    develop1 - 2012-10-20

    It should be up to the user to backup their data, we can only advise.

    I like your idea of having a backup reminder pop-up when a new database is created.
    As things are today, KP does not offer any advice at install time.
    Its only after the fact when users come to forum with a problem does advice flow to the user.

    If you feel that changing the core KP.exe  is "too far".
    Then at the very least lets bundle the dbbackup pluggin with the KP download.
    The advantage of that action plays directly with your suggestion  for a new popup dialog box at DB create time.

    In this new popup not only would we say the onus of backups is on the user but the same message would  also have a link directly to the pluggin config panel.   Since the pluggin would be bundled with the download of KP the config control panel would exist.

    If we are serious about our it is our job advise the user then I think we should seroiusly give the users the tools to take our advice.
    Particularly since all these tools already exist and the situation now is we are failing to provide both advice and tools to the user at install time.

     
  • Paul

    Paul - 2012-10-21

    I'm not in favour of bundling plug-ins, but a link to them in the pop-up would be fine.

    cheers, Paul

     

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