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Re: The future (dependencies on libc{5,6,6.1} &c)


On Sunday, 28 Sep, Nikhil Nair wrote:
> On to dependencies etc.
> Presumably, we intend that most packages won't need any Alpha-specific
> patching.  As I see it, this is impossible if our libc6 is called libc6.1
> ... all packages which depend on libc6 must be changed to depend on
> libc6.1 - that's a lot of packages.

Packages shouldn't depend on libc explicitly.  If a package depends on a
particular library, it is actually a source dependency - the package
won't _build_ correctly without it.  When a library dependency is
hardcoded instead of being generated by dpkg-shlibdeps, it is almost
always constitutes a bug in the source package.

About libc6-doc, I really doubt that it is reasonable to make it depend
on libc6.  It only consists of info and man pages, stuff that is
perfectly useful without the actual library installed.  If nobody
objects, I'll file a bug report against it.

> There is a simple fix, though.  I propose that libc6.1 should provide
> libc6, and libc6.1-dev should provide libc6-dev.  Such a change would hide
> this Debian/Alpha quirk, and should remove lots of dependency problems.
> As loong as we're sure we've irradicated all old .deb files which depended
> on the old glibc, we should be OK.  Mike?

I prefer that we rename our library package to libc6, unless Mike has some
strong reason why it cannot be done.  We'll run into problems with many
recently built packages, which already depend on libc6.1 - well, we'll
have to rebuild them.

As a temporary measure this idea is perfectly acceptable; much better
than dummy packages.  If I don't miss anything important.

> I'd be interested to know when the i386 port expects to irradicate
> libc5-based packages.  If there will be packages around for a while which
> `depend' on libc5, but can be compiled on the alpha, maybe libc6.1 should
> provide libc5 as well ...

No.  Remove the offending dependency, build the package and report the

> I suggest that, for any packages needing alpha-specific patches which are
> not yet in the main Debian source should have different revision numbers,
> e.g. packages foo_1.2-3 should become foo_1.2-3a1, foo_1.2-3a2 etc. (`a'
> for alpha, of course).  This would make it easier to keep track of which
> packages needed special patches.

Seems to me like a good idea.  I wonder if it is easy enough to build a
package named foo_1.2-3a1 whose `Source: ' points to foo_1.2-3 (as an
alternative to non-maintainter source upload).  Should be kinda tricky.

Any other comments?


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