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Re: Node.js and it's future in debian

On Fri, May 04, 2012 at 08:38:43AM -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:
> Raphael's approach of creating a compatibility symlink in postinst during
> upgrades but not for new installs sounds better to me the more I think
> about it, since that addresses the major concern of breaking someone's
> system during an upgrade.  It's not ideal in terms of making the conflict
> go away, but it does address the problem going forward, if not on
> currently-running systems.

I concur.  Quoting Raphaël's full message here, since it was only posted to


From: Raphael Hertzog <hertzog@debian.org>
Date: Thu, 3 May 2012 21:24:00 +0200


On Thu, 03 May 2012, Patrick Ouellette wrote:
> This is from the linux-hams list where I asked about changing the name of
> node:
> "From my experience, many MANY Linux hams have customized scripts that
> startup some very elaborate HAM systems.  For many, these scripts
> weren't written by them and the changing of the node command could be
> very difficult for some.  The other aspect is if this change came into
> a package update that could impact production systems in VERY remote
> sites.  This could cause all kinds ugliness that can be easily
> avoided."

So to avoid disruptions, you rename the binary in the package and in the
"postinst configure <old-version>" which is run during upgrade, you add a
symlink from /usr/sbin/node to ax25-node and you display a prominent
warning explaining that the binary name has changed but that you left a
(non-packaged) symlink in the mean time.

For new installs, as opposed to upgrades, you obviously don't install the
compatibility symlink.

I really don't understand what's so complicated about all this. With a
clear note in README.Debian and NEWS.Debian, ham radio users will not

Raphaël Hertzog ◈ Debian Developer

Pre-order a copy of the Debian Administrator's Handbook and help
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Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                    http://www.debian.org/
slangasek@ubuntu.com                                     vorlon@debian.org

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