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Re: Why 2 inconsistent package managers frontents?

On Mon, 19 Jun 2000, Joey Hess wrote:

> >   2) To support other programs that try to directly query the available
> >      file [bad in the first place], or use 'dpkg --print-avail'
> 3) Because a large number of books, documentation files, and mailing
>    list posts refer to dpkg --print-avail it, and so it is what a new user
>    is going to encounter and try to use first. And when it doesn't work ...

That same documentation generally doesn't even mention apt or apt-get, so
it is not entirely unreasonable that things change over time. Also, if
those docs don't say you need to run [U]pdate to freshen the avail file
then then are just plain wrong.

I can't help it that someone decided to weld dselect+dpkg together :< If
--print-avail was in some non-dpkg binary then I would just dirvert+wrap
that binary. 

Maybe I should lobby wichert to create a lib/methods/available interface,
and make dpkg --*avail exec it and also make dselect popen it. This
program would have a argument to get the whole available file and an
argument to return records with a search string, maybe some other things

Old dpkg methods would just use a default program that used
/var/lib/dpkg/available and APT would provide one that dynamically built
information from the version pin table and /var/state/apt/lists.

By putting it in the dselect methods dir it neatly fits into the dpkg
paradigm and is not APT specific.
That would make everyone quite happy, yes? 

> Well I think a lot of us just thought this was some weird unimplemented
> corner of apt. After all, where is the documentation that says apt
> was intended to break the available file?

Where is the documentation that says anything but dselect methods update
the available file? Remember, way long ago apt-get had to co-exist with a
non-apt dselect method so doing this update automatically would have been
quite bad.


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