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<title>Conceptual differences: GIO Reference Manual</title>
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<div class="titlepage"><div><div><h2 class="title" style="clear: both">
<a name="id-"></a>Conceptual differences</h2></div></div></div>
Conceptually, GConf and GSettings are fairly similar. Both
have a concept of pluggable backends. Both keep information
about keys and their types in schemas. Both have a concept of
mandatory values, which lets you implement lock-down.
There are some differences in the approach to schemas. GConf
installs the schemas into the database and has API to handle
schema information (<code class="function">gconf_client_get_default_from_schema()</code>,
<code class="function">gconf_value_get_schema()</code>, etc). GSettings on the other hand
assumes that an application knows its own schemas, and does
not provide API to handle schema information at runtime.
GSettings is also more strict about requiring a schema whenever
you want to read or write a key. To deal with more free-form
information that would appear in schema-less entries in GConf,
GSettings allows for schemas to be 'relocatable'.
One difference in the way applications interact with their
settings is that with GConf you interact with a tree of
settings (ie the keys you pass to functions when reading
or writing values are actually paths with the actual name
of the key as the last element. With GSettings, you create
a GSettings object which has an implicit prefix that determines
where the settings get stored in the global tree of settings,
but the keys you pass when reading or writing values are just
the key names, not the full path.
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