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How do I configure gconf to control user profiles in a NIS/NFS environment?

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Last Modified: 2013-12-19
I am trying to get a gconf configuration to work on my NIS/NFS network. Perhaps I am missing something rather simple. I have searched several online documents as well as the man pages for gconf information, and I am confused about certain basic gconf workings. Here is the scenario:

All data and logins are on a single NIS/NFS Master server - seville. All user home folders exist at  /export/students on seville, which is exported via NFS. As each person logs in to the NIS domain on a workstation, their home folder on seville is mounted on the local computer via the NFS share. I have searched the existing gconf documentation, and there appears to be certain points that I am missing.

Please consider the following questions:

I do not understand how the gconf configuration editor communicates with each of the clients. In the above  scenario, I am using the gconf configuration editor on seville. Keeping in mind that the home directories exist on seville, then exported via nfs to the workstations, should not all gconf communication take place on seville?

When the gconf daemon communicates with clients through its xml database, how is this communication initiated? ...monitored? ...from where to where?

I have created a test user, and deleted all hidden (.*) files from his home folder. When that user next logs in to a workstation X environment, all the necessary hidden files are recreated, as expected. I was hoping that the gconf daemon would take control of the newly created .gonf series of files. No luck. Where do the new .gconf series files come from after they are deleted? Why are they not under the control of the gconf daemon on seville? How do I get the gconf daemon on seville to take control of the home directories on seville? Please note that all this activity is taking place locally, on seville, then exported via NFS as the user logs in to any of several workstations.

I created a local user on seville. I logged in locally to seville as that user, whose home directory is in /home/user on seville. The test user is not a NIS user, nor is his home directory or structure subject to the NIS/NFS routines. I assumed that the gconf daemon was valid for this user. No luck. The user had the default background/environment. I did the above test: deleted all hidden files in the user's home folder. Logged in again: same scenario.

Yes, the gconfd-2 daemon is running on seville.
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