Re: Bug#30739: When a tiny part of a package uses non-free libraries
On Tue, 22 Dec 1998, Brian Mays wrote:
> > a non-free component, it should be in contrib. Just a bit different
> > perspective, to think about this from the point of view of a developer
> > who doesn't want to be foreced to install non-free components to build
> > a package properly, rather than from the POV of a user.
> If the developer doing a NMU of the package doesn't want libforms-dev
> on his system, then fine. The pcmcia-cs source will build a package
> without the cardinfo binary, which can be used for the NMU. I don't
> see how this is any different than splitting the cardinfo into a
> separate deb which won't be built if libforms-dev isn't installed. Or
> do we have to split the source in two? Well, so much for preserving
> pristine upstream sources.
At which point in time, the NMU will lack functionality that the original
package had, and someone will file a bug that cardinfo vanished. Policy
is QUITE CLEAR that you have to be able to build packages in main with
only stuff in main. I DON'T CARE if the binary that needs libforms is
small or insignificant, it is still a policy violation.
> I can understand objections on principle, such as RMS recently
> complaining about free packages suggesting non-free packages. But
> while we appreciate RMS's attention and suggestions, Debian is it's own
> entity, and we don't always agree with him (or how many of you want
> unstripped binaries on your system?). For now, this (arguably) is not
> against Debian policy, and I don't hate the non-freeness of xforms
> enough to remove the "Suggests" tag in pcmcia-cs.
I still believe it is (and always will be) a policy issue, not a "we hate
libforms" issue. You package grossly violates policy, and I don't see how
you can argue against that.