Re: Time to fight for our beloved DEB format!
Frankly, I disagree with the subject. LSB allows the distribution to
use a different (i.e. dpkg) packaging format than rpm. More
importantly, rpm is the packaging format used by every other
significant Linux distribution. While I agree that a million flies may
be wrong, as far as I have understood, there are no significant
functional differences between dpkg and rpm. Package dependencies may
be declared explicitly in rpm as well, as well as functional
dependencies (Requires: MTA). Debconf is not a package format issue,
but a policy issue. While dpkg uses fairly robust text file format,
rpm uses Berkeley DB's, which are very established as well, and
somewhat faster and more compact than dpkg text files. Etc etc. Both
packaging formats have their pros as well as cons. What ensures the
high quality of Debian, is its policy. Still, a packaging format
should not be seen as a religious issue.
What I would like to see, in the light of LSB, would be that
1) A transparent way to install LSB-compliant rpms in Debian is
implemented. Preferably one should be able to install rpms with 'dpkg'
command line tool, although an automatic format transform with 'alien'
could be performed behind the scenes.
2) Assuming that I am not misinformed about the functional
compatibility of dpkg and rpm, a LONG TERM goal for transforming
Debian to rpm base is issued. This would include adding rpm support
for all Debian package management tools, and transition tools for the
database contents, etc.
I am sorry if I brought up a inflammable issue, but I'd really like to
see some (civil, positive) discussion around the subject. Standards
(usually) are a good thing, and especially a common packaging format
for all Linux distributions would help acceptance and adoption of
Linux, and more importantly, Debian.
Matti Airas basement, SUPIR, SURVIAC, SGDN, CISE, GCHQ,
firstname.lastname@example.org Leitrim, National Information
+358 50 34 64 256 Infrastructure, OTAT, InfoSec, SVR, Canine,
http://www.iki.fi/mairas/ Fox, KLM, Magdeyev, JITEM, BRGE, CISSP, Bugs