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Re: version 0.15 of autoupgrade script

On Tue, 27 Jan 1998, Craig Sanders wrote:

> I can't recall exactly which what gets overwritten.  i should have taken
> notes last time i ran it but i didn't.  i'll be building a new machine
> tomorrow at work so i'll take notes when i get up to upgrading it to hamm. 
> i'll post a report tomorrow night. 

Ok. Keep up the good work.

> force-overwrite works.  i fail to see why some people dislike it so much. 
> yes, there are problems in some packages (sometimes caused by single
> packages being split into two or more packages).  --force-oerwrite gets
> around that problem and makes a dselect install/upgrade go smoothly for
> the user.  it hasn't caused any problems (at least none that i know of) 
> since it was made the default...and i've upgraded dozens of machines
> dozens of times each with dselect. 

Of course it works most of the time. But you never know if the files are
the same. funny-manpages has an overlap with manpages-dev that could be
very annoying to a programmer, for instance.

I believe that every time --force-overwrite is needed, there is a bug in
some package that should be fixed. Most of the time the fix would be a
simple Conflicts: line in the control file, especially when a package is
partially replacing an older package.

Perhaps dpkg could be modified to ask the user if a file needs to be
replaced, in case --force-overwrite is not supplied? That would be
annoying, but at least less annoying than aborting the installation, IMO.

> IMO, that is more "correct" behaviour than forcing the user to manually
> install some packages with dpkg --force-overwrite when dselect is
> perfectly capable of handling the situation properly without manual
> intervention. 

Perfectly capable, yes. But not very predictable. You never know in front
which of the two files you'll end up with if you install packages in a
random order.

> what all this means is that i am not at all keen to remove --force-overwrite
> from the script.  i want my script to work, even if that means it isn't
> 100% politically correct. 

Of course you want the script to work, and it should work. But a test run
without --force-overwrite would reveal any overlaps that exist. Bug
reports (severity: important) should then be filed against the overlapping
packages, so that the --force-overwrite won't be needed in the final
version that makes it into Debian 2.0.


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