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non-free, contrib, and non-us (was: freedom-subtracted.debian.org (was: Re: KDE))

On Thu, Mar 11, 1999 at 10:40:06PM +0100, Marcus Brinkmann wrote:
> /debian/dists/stable/non-free
>  ^^^^^^^^^^^^        ^^^^^^^^ <- implies non-free is part of stable Debian distribution 

You raise an interesting point.  Dale can probably remember that, way back
in the foggy mists of time, non-free and contrib were not bound to a
particular release of Debian.

This was changed because of practical problems with weird version skew
between the various packages in non-free and contrib.  Some were libc4,
some were libc5, some depended on the latest unstable versions of the
libraries they used, some depended on versions of libraries that weren't
even available anymore, etc. etc.

Tying non-free and contrib to a particular release is a *good* thing, IMO,
otherwise it's all too easy for the stuff in contrib and non-free to break
altogether, though clearly we have the problem of the implications of the
above pathname.

So that should be fixed.

And while we're at it, since we're getting a nonus mirror in Canada that's
more reliable than the "real" site, maybe we should make that one the
official nonus and make it clear to one and all that "non-us" and
"non-free" are orthogonal.  Whether something is export-controlled in the
United States has nothing to do with whether or not its license meets the
requirements of the DFSG (witness PGP versus GPG).

I think we could come up with something general enough and powerful enough
to kill the above two birds with one stone.  I'm not sure how easy it would
be, though.

G. Branden Robinson              |
Debian GNU/Linux                 |               It tastes good.
branden@ecn.purdue.edu           |               -- Bill Clinton
cartoon.ecn.purdue.edu/~branden/ |

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