[CentOS] Change system-wide default configuration for FF and OO with /etc/skel

Robert Heller heller at deepsoft.com
Mon Nov 30 17:36:24 UTC 2009

At Mon, 30 Nov 2009 18:15:23 +0100 CentOS mailing list <centos at centos.org> wrote:

> Hi,
> I'm using a heavily tweaked CentOS 5.4 for desktop installs (here's what 
> it looks like: http://www.microlinux.fr/captures.html).
> For every app I install, I try to configure a sensible default 
> configuration system-wide for all users. For example, once I found a 
> nice configuration for XMMS (default skin, loads of plugins, orange On 
> Screen Display in a nice font, etcetera), I put my whole ~/.xmms in 
> /etc/skel, so that every new user on the system will have the same 
> default configuration. I have a script which does that for most of the 
> applications I install for users. Even my GNOME desktop is heavily 
> tweaked, and similarly, there's a default /etc/skel/.gconf for this.
> Now I have two annoyances remaining: Firefox and OpenOffice.org. When 
> installing both of these (Firefox from the CentOS repos, OpenOffice.org 
> from the RPMS contained in openoffice.org's tarball), the default 
> configuration for each one (in ~/.mozilla and ~/.openoffice.org) takes 
> no less than 3 MB, which I find a bit puzzling. Since I keep all my 
> default configurations in an SVN tree, I find this a bit heavy.
> For Firefox, I only change a couple of options (like "Close download 
> manager after finishing downloading" and "always ask where to store a 
> file"). Similarly, for OpenOffice.org, I change things like 
> auto-completion (so users won't call me on a sunday morning asking "Why 
> does it try to finish my sentences?").
> I guess the "real" configuration must be some small plain text file. But 
> then, where? Is there a way not to upload the whole 3 MB of configuration?

There is a file named 'prefs.js' in the
~/.mozilla/firefox/<mumble>.default/ directory.  Here are some other
'magic files' there you might want to 'standardize':

	extensions* (some files and a directory): extensions live here
		(if there are some 'standard' extensions you want all your
		users to have, eg your company's / organization's toolbar)
	localstore.rdf: contains things like your toolbar arangements
		(if there is some 'standard' settings for your company
		 / organization)
	places.sqlite: bookmarks (if there is some 'standard' set of

> Cheers,
> Niki
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Robert Heller             -- 978-544-6933
Deepwoods Software        -- Download the Model Railroad System
http://www.deepsoft.com/  -- Binaries for Linux and MS-Windows
heller at deepsoft.com       -- http://www.deepsoft.com/ModelRailroadSystem/

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