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Re: fixing up /usr/doc

On Thu, Dec 24, 1998 at 01:43:40PM -0500, Zack Brown wrote:
> On 24 Dec 1998, Ben Gertzfield wrote:
> > All Debian packages must come with copyright information in
> > /usr/doc/packagename/.
> I know... but shouldn't that information be somewhere else? I mean, it
> renders the directory useless.

please explain how the inclusion of information that YOU have no use
for (but many other people do) can render the /usr/doc/<package>/
directories "useless".

> If you have to have copyright information in /usr/doc, then at least  
> put the real docs somewhere else so people can get to them.           

how does the existence of copyright and changelog information prevent
people from accessing the other files in that directory?

> I don't maintain any Debian packages, but I *use* Debian, and I'm
> telling you -- that directory sucks. Since there's no overwhelming
> reason to keep it that way, why not change it? Copyrights and
> ChangeLogs have their place, but that place is not /usr/doc.

you are wrong. you may have no personal need for such information, but
that does not prevent it from being useful documentation. copyright and
licensing info is useful, especially for non-free packages. changelogs
are invaluable for any package.

the copyright file also (by debian policy) states where the original
source was downloaded from - which is useful if you want to hunt for a
web site or any "contrib" files associated with the package.

> /usr/doc should be a place users can go to explore package
> documentation, not painstakingly cd from virtually-empty-directory to
> virtually-empty-directory.

it is hardly the fault of debian if there is no upstream documentation
provided for the package. if it bothers you a lot, then write some
documentation and submit it to either the debian package maintainer or
to the upstream author.

btw, there are tools which making browsing directories very easy. mc is
one obvious example. also http://localhost/doc/ or http://localhost/dwww
if you have a web server installed.


craig sanders

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