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update-alternatives and ispell dictionaries

Dear All,

First  of     all, let    me   thank   Ian   Jackson    for  including
update-alternatives in the  recent dpkg releases;  it  really makes my
life easier!

I've got the following scenario...

The ispell dictionaries all come as separate packages, and all provide
the virtual   package 'ispell-dictionary',  which  is  recommended  by
ispell  itself.   Ispell does not include   any dictionary,  as it can
quite happily  build its own from an  list of words  the user may have

Anyway, I've just converted the dictionary installation scripts to use
update-alternatives  instead of nasty,  bug-ridden perl monstrosities.
I'm looking for some advice  on how to assign  priority numbers to the
different  languages, and  how  the  system  administrator can pick  a
default at install time, or later.

At the moment I have the following priorities assigned...

iamerican	10
ibritish	 9
iportuguese	 5

Ideally, I'd   like the postinst script   to  prompt...'Would you like
<language> to be the system default?' and have update-alternatives "do
the right  thing".  I don't see  how update-alternatives can be forced
to make the current set of links being  installed the default, without
interrogating   the  /var/lib/dpkg/alternatives/<package> file     and
setting the priority higher than any found in there.

Any advice?   Or  should I just   leave  the priorities, and   issue a
message at  install  time, informing  the  system adminitrator that to
make  this language the  default  she should run 'update-alternatives'

What  happens  if update-alternatives    finds two packages  with  the
highest priority?

I imagine  Ian Jackson is the  best qualified person  to reply to this

Best wishes at a busy time!


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