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Tcl/Tk release goals

Hi Debian fellows

The Tcl/Tk  team announced in  October [1]  that some work  is happening
off-stage about  Tcl/Tk versions and  their reverse dependencies.  A new
policy document is currently available [2] whose aim is introducing some
order and improvements  in the current Tcl/Tk status. We  are now moving
forward by defining a few release goals for Lenny, which are of interest
for the release team and all involved maintainers and packages.

Our goals in descending order of priority are:

[A] Removing /usr/lib in $auto_path [3]. That has been already announced
in the past message with motivations for that, and experimental packages
are available  in experimental for  testing. We  are going to  release a
non-/usr/lib Tcl/Tk  in unstable and  preparing a few NMUs  for packages
which need  fixed pkgIndex.tcl  for that.  That will  happen as  soon as
possible.  A dedicated  page about  tasks and  packages involved  in the
transition is [4] for all interested parties.

[B] Removing Tcl/Tk 8.3, which is  largely obsolete since years, and not
supported upstream. That will make  security teams happy. A few packages
need to  depend on Tcl/Tk  8.4 and testing,  a few main  extensions will
need  changes  as  well  and  all that  will/could  propagate  to  other
packages. A  dedicated wiki  page listing the  packages involved  in 8.3
removing is available [5]. Some  packages could need specific patches in
order to work with  a current version of Tcl/Tk, but  that should be not
the general case. If a patch  cannot be provided (dead upstream, none is
able to  provide a suitable patch,  etc) the interested package  will be
proposed for removal  because obsolete. That is surely the  case of some
old/deprecated extensions.

[C] Making the  recently released  Tcl/Tk  8.5 the  default package  in
Lenny.  Default packages  are a  recent concept  introduced in  the last
months  in  order to  improve  the  status  of the  Tcl/Tk  dependencies
building by allowing  bin-NMUs when ever needed. We would  have the long
waited 8.5 as default package in the next release.


[1] http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-announce/2007/10/msg00008.html
[2] http://pkg-tcltk.alioth.debian.org/tcltk-policy.html/
[3] http://pkg-tcltk.alioth.debian.org/tcltk-policy.html/ch-tcltk.html#s-paths
[4] http://wiki.debian.org/Teams/DebianTclTk/UsrLibTransition
[5] http://wiki.debian.org/Teams/DebianTclTk/TclTk83Removal

Francesco Lovergine
(in behalf of the Tcl/Tk team)

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