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Re: Gzipped .dvi files?

>>>>> "CS" == Christian Schwarz.

CS> a) remove the .dvi.gz files completely since the sysadmin don't want
CS> any .dvi files at all, or
>>  What will doc-base do if the sysadmin suddenly change her mind about
>> having dvi files on her system, if it's going to remove dvi.gz files
>> completely?

CS> Reinstall the packages. (Sorry, but I don't know a better solution
CS> yet. If you do, please tell me.)

I don't think it's a good idea to remove part of the files which come with
a package without removing the package itself; at least, I don't like it
very much.

Every file in an installed package is supposed to be on the system, owned
by the Debian package itself: if you start removing files (even maybe
unneeded files) without informing dpkg about it you will loose the ability
to tell if a package is completely installed or not; how could one keep
track of removed documentation after some time has elapsed, to realize he
needs to reinstall the package?  Even if one could (maybe comparing
existing files with /var/lib/dpkg/info/package.list), it won't be a clean
solution anyway.

A better solution, even if not a very bright one, would be to package
dvi's separately, letting the system administrator choose if she wants
them installed.

>> I think providing gzipped sources (i.e. (La)TeX(Info)|SGML|... files)
>> in the packages and letting doc-base decide what to do with them (at
>> install time or whatever) may be an option.  (Doc-base should be told
>> at least how to produce raw text files from sources).

CS> This is a planned feature, but I doubt it will ever work for (La)TeX.
CS> (There are way to many macro packages etc. for this.)

I think it should be possible to tell doc-base which (La)TeX macro
packages are needed (i.e. which Debian (La)TeX packages should be
installed) to typeset a given package documentation (this information
could be shipped as a Debian control file in each package, let's say each
package would declare its `DocDepends').

Then doc-base would decide if the sysadmin choice about her preferred
documentation format could be honored or not, informing her about possible
missing packages.

CS> The texinfo->info conversion, as sgml->{ps,text,html} are simplier and
CS> will eventually be implemented.

Maybe texinfo->info is somewhat standard, but I think SGML really has the
same (La)TeX problem: how could you now in advance what sort of DTD's your
documentation will use?  Not every package on earth will use Linuxdoc
(sgml-tools) or Debiandoc as DTD.

Providing some mechanism to tell doc-base what it will need to produce
each possible format could solve these problems, instead.

CS> Anyways, I'm still looking for volunteers to work on this area. My
CS> time for doc-base is limited, so I'll only implement some important
CS> features myself.  If someone wants to help, please drop me a note.

I think this is a very important project, but, unfortunately, I'm pretty
busy with my studies at this moment, and I'm afraid I don't have very much
free time, so probably I can't help now. :-(


Davide G. M. Salvetti - IW5DZC [JN53fr]
Have a look at Debian GNU/Linux: <http://www.debian.org/>.
Debian is the free operating system with open development model.

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