Forum OpenACS Q&A: Response to Enhancing the Installation Process: Automation.

There are 2 parts to the install process, at least that is how I would
break it down:  installing the software needed, and then configuring
the bits so that they reflect what is desired.

Part 1. is "get the stuff on the hard drive, and up and running"  this
means that OpenACS files, Postgres, AOLserver are installed on the
system, and that AOLserver can talk to Postgres.  A directory (say
/web/server1/) is chosen and the ACS files are moved over.  Then, the
data-model.sql file is loaded and checked for errors.

Part 2. is unknown territory, I think, for ACS since there has never
really been a configuration interface for ACS.

That is, there are options that can only be configured by hand-editing
certain files.  A text-mode Perl or TCL program that asked some
customization questions and kept the rest as sane defaults (and backed
up your nsd.tcl at the same time) would be good.  Would it make sense
to have a "setup server" that let you configure the ACS installation?
Would it make sense to have a very minimal, bootstrap nsd.tcl, and
once you got the DBMS connection working, ALL other settings were in
the database? -- that would make it much easier to set up Web forms to
allow configuration.

I looked at Zope - I found its performance and ODB underwhelming (if
not laughable - then again I have not tweaked it).  But the 2-minute
install, and nice Web interface to security and configuration make it
pretty nice...