I use Zabbix for a lot of management purposes, and it has a discovery mode that you can customize. I used discovery in a large ISP environment to scan for new customer nodes coming online, scan the nodes for correct configuration, send alerts to techs when incorrectly configured systems or rogues were found, etc... The quality of the ISP's network went way up when we started detecting configuration issues BEFORE they caused problems.

The only downside is this is a rather application-specific service, so you have a challenge to make it application neutral. that probably means covering the basic common system settings, and making a API that is easy to integrate into the user's application. Being that these devices are great for swarm applications, your idea has a lot of merit. What would be better than a self-configuring swarm?

But I ageree this should be a generic Linux app, just keep it light weight so it works as well on small systems as large ones.

There are a lot of tools to look at that solve needs like this out there, in configuration management and system monitoring, so get some exposure to what others have done, might give you some good ideas.