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Re: miscutils snag/questions for all

Bruce Perens wrote:
> As a rule of thumb, if you can get a program from the most-upstream
> source - for example the person who contributed it to BOGUS instead
> of BOGUS, get it from that source.

That sounds fair.  Unfortunately, some utilities (like fdisk) seem to
be maintained (recently) only in util-linux.

With BSD-derived programs, it seems obvious what to do.  With Linux-
specific utilities, things get somewhat complicated.  Do we really want
programs like fdisk to evolve differently in different distributions?

If the answer is 'yes', then I would like to have an fdisk program 
that works like the one that comes with DOS.  Then everyone would know
what to do with it.  :)

But seriously, what's the best way to deal with linux-specific
utilities?  Are we content to let Debian diverge onto its own path,
or are we committed to keeping things like 'fdisk' consistent among
distributions?  And what about all the bug fixes the util-linux
team has put in fdisk?  [Hint: there are quite a few, and I have
limited resources when it comes to testing major changes to a package
like that...]

I asked Rik if he would add me to the util-linux developers' mailing
list.  (Answer: it's only for util-linux [BOGUS?] developers.)  Too
bad.  He did seem pleased that someone working on Debian contacted
him, but right away we got dangerously close to a religious war about
how Linux distributions "should be".

> It's a mess. I wish that all of the programs we need from util-linux
> were distributed separately, that way we could package them individually.
> I'd prefer to split util-linux into smaller packages, if you have time
> to do that.

I'd prefer it that way.  I'll work on it.

If anyone else has any comments, please send me a note.


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