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version numbering - ~debXuY vs ~bpoX+Y


Some months ago I installed the backported nvidia drivers.
Recently there was an update to stable that left me here,
where I have a backports version that is now lower than the stable
  % dpkg --compare-versions 390.87-8~bpo9+1 lt 390.87-8~deb9u1
  % echo $?

% apt-cache policy libnvidia-eglcore
  Installed: 390.87-8~bpo9+1
  Candidate: 390.87-8~deb9u1
  Version table:
     390.87-8~deb9u1 990
        990 http://debian-archive.local:9999/debian stretch/non-free amd64 Packages
 *** 390.87-8~bpo9+1 800
        200 http://debian-archive.local:9999/debian stretch-backports/non-free amd64 Packages
        100 /var/lib/dpkg/status

% cat /etc/apt/preferences.d/nvidia
Explanation: Set priority higher than default (500) to ensure installation
Package: nvidia* *-nvidia libnvidia* libegl* libgl* glx-* update-glx
Pin: release a=stretch-backports
Pin-Priority: 800

Now aside from apt-cache ignoring my attempts at policy setting,
my question is: has this effect of the ~debXuY numbering been
considered on the mailing lists? I'd like to read the discussion
because it seems like a general problem, not confined to the nvidia

Perhaps this is just a timing issue and a version bump for the
backports is in the works, but I thought I should ask.
The nvidia case is a little vexing because I've been advised by
the maintainers to avoid mixing the backports and stable versions,
hence the preferences file shown above. Taking out transitions,
this affects 46 packages on the machine in question, not all of
which are updated together.

Kind regards

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