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Re: IMPORTANT: What can we do about the base package?

Joey Hess <joey@kite.ml.org> writes:

> Tony Finch:
> > The main problem is the device files in /dev. These are created by the
> > makedev package, but are not in its file list. They _are_ in base's
> > file list, so removing base is a bad thing to do without a great deal
> > of care.
> > 
> > Would it be possible to incorporate a really gross hack into makedev
> > that `manually' removes the base package (so long as base-files and
> > base-passwd are installed) without dpkg getting involved (i.e. by
> > removing its files from /var/lib/dpkg/info and editing
> > /var/lib/dpkg/status)? This idea will probably give Ian a fit...
> How about releasing an update of the base package that contains no files,
> but instead runs MAKEDEV to generate the files in /dev? Then after you
> install it, you can unistall it safely, without killing /dev.

This is similar to what I eventually did with miscutils, except that I
would leave MAKEDEV out of the new base, assuming the MAKEDEV appears
elsewhere.  Make sure that all of the conffiles are removed from the
new base package.  We don't want conffiles disappearing when base is
purged.  Change essential, priority, and base.  Consult with Guy Maor
on this, since he is in charge of the ftp site.

miscutils changed into many other other packages, including base.
Originally, each of the files in miscutils also appeared in one of the
other files.  However, the new packages eventually changed.  After the
change, upgrading left a few files around.  It also left conffiles
belonging miscutils, which could be wiped out if miscutils was ever

Eventually, we need to modify dpkg to handle a problem like this.  As
soon as possible, dpkg should disallow the same conffile appearing in
more than one package.

Kevin Dalley

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