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weekly policy summary

Here's what's been happening on debian-policy this week (and last week).

Note: for details of the policy process, see
http://www.debian.org/~srivasta/policy/ch3.html. Also, this summary is
available on the web at http://kitenet.net/~joey/policy-weekly.html.

                           Accepted Amendments
Virtual package 'ispell-dictionary'
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila; seconded by Julian Gilbey and Anthony
  * add ispell-dictionary to the list of virtual packages for
    "Anything providing a dictionary suitable for ispell".
Correct section 3.3 to take account of file-rc (#41547)
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed by Julian Gilbey; seconded by Roland Rosenfeld, 41547 and
    Roland Rosenfeld.
  * Part of policy doesn't make sense if file-rc is being used. This
    proposal is to clean it up so it does make sense, and moreover so
    it emphasizes that update-rc.d is the only thing that should be
    used to register init scripts.
Wording cleanup w.r.t. conffile/configuration file (#40767)
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed by Steve Greenland; seconded by Joey Hess, Julian Gilbey
    and Kai Henningsen.
  * This cleans up references to "conffiles" and "confuguration files"
    throughout policy.
Changelog.html.gz sanitization (#40934)
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed by Joey Hess; seconded by Roland Rosenfeld, Edward Betts
    and Manoj Srivastava.
  * A proposal to make a plain text dump of html changelogs available
    so changelogs are always available at a consitent location. The
    html changelog may optionally be included as changelog.html.gz
Data section (#38902)
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed on 3 Jun 1999 by Darren O. Benham; seconded by Peter S
    Galbraith and Peter Makholm.
  * "Since there is interest in packaging census data, maps, genome
    data and other huge datasets I and since most people agreed that
    dropping them in main or contrib is not a great idea, I propose
    the creation of a data section to reside along side of main,
    contrib and non-free." Includes rules about what goes in this
Definition of extra priority (#33076)
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed on 8 Feb 1999 by Santiago Vila; seconded by Peter S
    Galbraith, M.C. Vernon, Jules Bean and Julian Gilbey.
  * Clarification of what the "extra" priority means.
FHS-compliant location of compiled examples (#42849)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Joey Hess; seconded by Julian Gilbey and Chris Waters.
  * This is a proposal for dealing with architecture-specific example
    files. The idea is to put them in /usr/lib/package/examples, with
    symlink(s) as necessary to make /usr/share/doc/package/examples
    point to them.
A proposal for README.Debian (#42554)
  * Stalled.
  * Proposed by Stephane Bortzmeyer; seconded by Anthony Towns and
    Richard Braakman.
  * Policy doesn't talk about README.Debian right now. This is an
    addtion to policy that says what should be in the file. It says it
    should include descriptions of changes made to the upstream
    source, what options were enabled in configure and make, and the
    packages needed to build the package.
Delay the /usr/doc transition till after potato (#42477)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Chis Waters; seconded by Antti-Juhani Kaijanaho, Ardo
    van Rangelrooij and Julian Gilbey.
  * Change policy to only make FHS /usr/share/doc be part of policy
    after potato is released.
    ( Santiago Vila and Joel Klecker formally object. )
/var/mail and /var/spool/mail (#42052)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Joseph Carter; seconded by Gordon Matzigkeit, Joey
    Hess and Santiago Vila.
  * This outlines a migration path from /var/spool/mail to /var/mail.
    Old systems will have /var/spool/mail with /var/mail a symlink.
    New machines will have the reverse. Packages using /var/mail
    should depend on the version of base-files that implements this.
Usr/share/doc vs. /usr/doc (#40706)
  * Rejected.
  * Proposed by Manoj Srivastava; seconded by Joey Hess, Roland
    Rosenfeld, Joseph Carter, William Ono and Stefan Gybas.
  * /usr/doc has moved, and we want to have a good transition to
    /usr/share/doc without breaking backwards compatability and
    incremental upgrades. This proposal is to make each package manage
    the transition on its own by managing a /usr/doc/package ->
    /usr/share/doc/package symlink. At some future date, all these
    links will be removed.
    ( This was shot down with 4 objections. This issue is probably
    going to the technical committe. There are too many proposals
    about this to keep track of. )
Build-time dependencies on binary packages (#41232)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Antti-Juhani Kaijananaho; seconded by Roman Hodek,
    Santiago Vila, Stefan Gybas and Ian Jackson.
  * Proposes the addition of four new fields to debian/control to
    specifiy different kinds of source dependancies (and conflicts,
    suggests, etc). Does't handle packages that need unpacked source
    of another package to build.
    ( This is a revised version of the proposal, taking in to account
    people's comments. )
Add VISUAL when checking for user's editor (#41121)
  * Stalled.
  * Proposed by Steve Greenland; seconded by David Frey, Julian Gilbey
    and Chris Waters.
  * Programs should check VISUAL before EDITOR when trying to figure
    out what editor to use. sensible-editor already does this.
Rewrite of "Configuration files" section (#40766)
  * Stalled.
  * Proposed by Steve Greenland; seconded by Joey Hess and Stefan
  * A replacement for section 4.7 that clarifies the different between
    "configuration file" and "conffile" and uses the two consitently.
    ( probably a consensus )
Policy still suggests /etc/rc.boot instead of /etc/rcS.d (#32448)
  * Accepted.
  * Proposed on 26 Jan 1999 by Brian Servis; seconded by Julian Gilbey
    and Joey Hess.
  * Change policy to refer to /etc/rcS.d instead of the old
                            Active proposals
Automatic migration to /usr/share/doc (#42634)
  * Proposed by Ian Jackson.
  * Yet another migration proposal. Ian promises to fix any dpkg bugs
    that hold us back. Packages pre-depend on a new base-files that
    moves /usr/doc to /usr/share/doc and installs a symlink. Packages
    install docs in /usr/share/doc.
Remove the incompatibility argument from 5.1 (#43077)
  * Proposed by Matthias Klose.
  * The proposal is to get rid of the part of policy (5.1) that
    mandates the format of architecture specification strings a
    program must use.
Directories for local initialization scripts
  * Proposed by Julio.
  * Add a directory /etc/init.local (or maybe /etc/init.d.local?) for
    locally installed init scripts, which can be handled by
    update-rc.d like the scripts in /etc/init.d.
    ( People seem puzzled about why this would be necessary at all. )
Automatic migration to /usr/share/doc (#42633)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Mike Goldman.
  * Another /usr/share/doc migration proposal. This one says
    base-files should run a script that moves all files to
    /usr/share/doc on upgrade to potato. Also, dpkg should be modified
    to put files in /usr/share/doc when packages with files in
    /usr/doc are installed.
Method for shlibs to work with libfoo.so (#42236)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Joseph Carter; seconded by Anthony Towns.
  * This is a proposal to make binary-only shared libs that have no
    soname work with dpkh-shlibdeps. The idea is to detect such
    packages and use "." for the soname in the shlibs file.
A pre-install required space checking mechanism for Debian packages
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed on 19 May 1999 by Manoj Srivastava.
  * The idea is to enable tools like apt to check if a set of packages
    will fit on a disk, taking various partitions into account. This
    will require adding something like the output of du to the package
    or to the Packages file or to a new file that can be downloaded.
    The details are still being hashed out.
                            Stalled proposals
Test suite proposal (#41902)
  * Stalled.
  * Proposed by Ian Jackson.
  * This proposal deals with regression tests for packages. The idea
    is to make a separate package_version.tests.tar.gz file that
    contains regression tests. It details what should be in this file
    and how it works.
Modify dpkg-buildpackage to handle FHS move (#41729)
  * Stalled.
  * Proposed by Julian Gilbey.
  * x Another /usr/share/doc transition proposal. This one is to make
    dpkg-buildpackage move /usr/doc to /usr/share/doc when a package
    is built.
Naming Conventions for modules (#41113)
  * Stalled.
  * Proposed by Alexander Reelsen.
  * perl modules are named libfoo-perl; python modules are named
    python-foo. It's not consitent. This proposal is that we come up
    with a general naming scheme for all language modules that is
    consistant accross languages.
Get rid of undocumented(7) symlinks (#39830)
  * Stalled.
  * Proposed on 20 Jun 1999 by Roland Rosenfeld.
  * All programs are still required to provide manpages, but
    undocumented.7 is done away with by this proposal.
                              Old proposals
Debian-policy has an unclear statement on dependancies and priorities
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Chris Fearnley; seconded by Joey Hess.
  * A clarification to wording about package priorities. No real
    meaning seems to be changed by this proposal.
Permit/require use of bz2 for source packages (#39299)
  * Old.
  * Proposed on 10 Jun 1999 by Chris Lawrence; seconded by Goswin
  * "I propose that we permit the use of bzip2 to compress source
    package files (.orig.tar and .diff for most packages, .tar for
    native packages). I further propose that the use of bzip2 be
    mandatory for newly uploaded source files, and that any existing
    source packages in the archive in gzip format exceeding 5 MB of
    compressed space be converted upon the freeze for potato."
    ( The reason this was proposed is because we're almost overflowing
    the second source CD already. This is a very contentious proposal.
A better way to configure debian systems (#38g703)
  * Old.
  * Proposed on 1 Jun 1999 by Goswin Brederlow; seconded by Falk
  * Another configuration management proposal.
Editor and sensible-editor
  * Old.
  * Proposed on 2 Jun 1999 by Goswin Brederlow.
  * Instead of having programs use $EDITOR and fall back to editor,
    just use sensible-editor.

Last modified: Fri Aug 20 13:33:46 1999

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