Suggestion to and how to alow different compression for .debs
I saw several discussions and proposals about using bzip2 to compress
instead of gzip to reduce the overal size of Debian.
I am strongly for allowing bzip2 compression into debs and strongly
against forcing it. Also I am against the way how compression is done
at the moment, so heres my suggestion:
The control.tar.gz stays that way for the moment, but the data.tar.gz
might be any format the maintainer seems fit.
The control.tar.gz then contains a file called "how_to_unpack" that
will be used to unpack the data file. Normaly it would be a shell
script that just contains a call to "tar -xz", but "tar -xI" or
anything else would be allowed.
Of cause policy should encourage to use bzip2 (or gzip if smaller) and
base packages must use tar.gz (or tar.bz2 if bzip2 is in base) so
that one can update debian. Any package using a non default
compression must predepend on that compressor, but that should be
clear for the packaging scripts and maintainer.
The changes to make this work wouldn´t be greater than pure bzip2
support and it would be much more flexible.
Additionally a field could be added to the .dsc files to tell how to
unpack the orig.my_favourite_packer files needed to build a source to
allow different compression for source files, but thats another
May the Source be with you.