Re: sponsor and advocate wanted
On Tue, Jun 25, 2002 at 02:01:46PM -0300, Ben Armstrong wrote:
> On Thu, Jun 20, 2002 at 09:24:27PM -0700, Kristis Makris wrote:
> > tkxcd - a diff front end with a look and feel based on Atria Clearcase
> > xcleardiff. Similar to tkdiff. Outdated, but upstream has a much
> > improved version that I'm pushing him to formally release.
> This one looks interesting. I'm taking a look right now.
Never having seen Atria Clearcase xcleardiff, I don't know how close this
utility comes to its look and feel. However, comparing it to tkdiff and
xxdiff, I don't see anything in this package that would recommend it above
these more mature visual diff programs already in Debian. Can you help me
out here? Have I missed some obvious advantage that tkxcd has over tkdiff
Moving along to some general observations about your packaging:
- You include ./debian/menu, but it does not work because arguments must be
provided to the command. Therefore you should remove it. You can add it
back later if/when tkxcd supports being started with no arguments.
- Why do you depend on tk8.0 in particular? That is a bit dated. Will
tk8.3 not work? If more recent versions work, specify a dependency
on tk8.3 or earlier versions with: Depends: tk8.3 | wish
- You make the package priority "optional". I would say "extra", given
that tkdiff and xxdiff both already provide more functionality than tkxcd.
- The URL you give in copyright gives me a 404. Is there a new home page
- You unnecessarily create /usr/sbin in the deb because you did not delete
it from ./debian/dirs (dh_make put it there).
- You unnecessarily leave in unused and/or commented-out dh_* routines
in your ./debian/rules file. Find the ones that aren't needed and
delete them, thereby improving readability of the makefile.
- Similarly, configure & configure-stamp do nothing. Eliminate these
targets and all references to them.
- Under build (which is mandatory) you do nothing. Instead of leaving
dh_make's comment in, you might replace it with a comment simply stating
that tkxcd has nothing to build.
- The DEB_HOST_*_TYPE variables are not needed. Neither are the
DEB_BUILD_OPTIONS if statments that set switches that would only
be used during building & installing a binary program, which you
- You include TODO in ./debian/docs but not README. Why not? Yes, I
can see README contains some install notes, but it also has valuable
user information in it not also in the man page (see the "Bug Reports"
section at bottom). Including a README with install notes in it is
not without precedent in Debian. I see it all the time, and for
similar reasons as in this case: after the install notes often comes
some valuable information for the end user.
And finally some comments about the program itself:
- I found tkxcd segfaulted and core-dumped on me upon reaching the bottom of
a file which ended with trailing nulls (an artefact of copying the files
over SMB from a Pathworks server)
- When advancing from one diff to the next, and both differences are visible
in the same screenful, the window does not advance, nor is there any
visible indicator that we are now viewing the next difference section.
This has the "feel" of being broken. When I press a button, I expect
something to happen visibly.
- Providing a '-rcs' switch is a nice touch, but nothing new, since tkdiff
provides this, and more. Tkdiff will also do cvs, which is far more
common than rcs these days anyway. (Yes, I know you warned that the
package was out of date.) I did not test the -rcs switch, so I can't
say whether it works as advertised.
I have only looked at this packages as it is the only one that interested me
personally. Perhaps this was an early attempt and you have since learned to
make more polished packages. If you want to make a good impression on a
would-be sponsor or advocate, my principal advice to you is to pay careful
attention to the stuff that dh_make automatically adds for you and make sure
all the rough edges are gone before you announce your package to the world.
If there is another package you have made that shows off your packaging
skills better, perhaps you could let us know so we could better assess your
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