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Bug#681419: Alternative dependencies on non-free packages in main

On Thu, 12 Jul 2012, Russ Allbery wrote:
> The question at issue in these bugs is whether it is permissible for
> a package in main to declare a non-default alternative dependency on
> a package in non-free.  In other words, may a package in main have a
> dependency of:
>     Depends: foo | foo-nonfree

I personally believe this is acceptable, but only with the following
caveat: under no circumstances should foo-nonfree be automatically
pulled in. [That is, there cannot be a conflicts or similar
arrangement where the package resolver seeks to pull in foo-nonfree to
solve the problem.]
For example, if foo conflicted with baz, but foo-nonfree did not and
baz was installed, foo-nonfree could be installed in preference to foo
without the user specifically asking for foo-nonfree.

Don Armstrong

"I'm a rational being--of a sort--rational enough, at least, to see the
symptoms of insanity around me. And I'm human, the same as the people
I think of as victims when my guard drops. It's at least possible I'm
even crazier than my fellows, whom I'm tempted to pity.
"There seems only one thing to do, and that's get drunk"
 -- Chad C. Mulligan (John Brunner _Stand On Zanzibar_ p390)

http://www.donarmstrong.com              http://rzlab.ucr.edu

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