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.deb filename parsing *again*



This problem just won't go away, will it.  As those who have been
reading debian-private will know, I recently proposed to get parseable
filenames by encoding the package name in the filename so as to ensure
that the _encoded_ version has no hyphens.  The encoding was to
replace each hyphen with an underscore.  Noone really said anything,
so I thought it was decided, but this is still obviously causing much
confusion.

Axioms - I assert these, and do not want to debate them:

1. We need parseable filenames.

2. We cannot reasonably change all the package names currently
containing hyphens (nor do we necessarily want to).

3. We have discussed this too much already, and need a decision.

This leaves us with the question of how to represent package name,
version number and optionally architecture in the filename.

The best solution proposed so far (the one which has attracted the
least criticism) is the one where you encode the package name with
y/-/_/ when you put it in the filename.

A few days ago it occurred to me that in most of the contexts that are
relevant here the character # is not a metacharacter.  This leads me
to suggest, tentatively, the use of
<packagename>-#<version>.<arch>.deb in the Incoming directory (as
uploaded) and <packagename>-#<version>.deb in the binary-<arch>
distribution directories.

So, for example,
 Package name  Version   `A' filename               `B' filename
 dpkg          1.1.6elf  dpkg-1.1.6elf.deb          dpkg-#1.1.6elf.deb
 ncurses-term  1.9.8a-4  ncurses_term-1.9.8a-4.deb  ncurses-term-#1.9.8a-4.deb
 libc5-dev     5.2.18-1  libc5_dev-5.2.18-1.deb     libc5-dev-#5.2.18-1.deb
 elisp-manual  19-2.4-1  elisp_manual-19-2.4-1.deb  elisp-manual-#19-2.4-1.deb

Unless you have a proposal that is a radical improvement over `A' and
`B' and you're pretty sure that we'll all like it then you shouldn't
post it.

There will now be a short flamewar where people argue the merits of
`A' vs. `B', and then Bruce Perens, David Engel, the archive
maintainer(s) (whoever they are by then) and I will decide.

When the decision is taken it will be announced and implemented on
ftp.debian.org.  A version of dpkg-name will be provided that uses the
new syntax.  I suggest that following this decision there should be NO
FURTHER DEBATE unless someone can convince at least one of us by
private email that their scheme is better.

Ian.


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