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Re: A section for commercial software?

On 22-May-01, 08:05 (CDT), Russell Coker <russell@coker.com.au> wrote: 
> On Monday 21 May 2001 20:35, Steve Greenland wrote:
> > No, they'd still support dependency stuff, integration with
> > apt/dpkg. The benefit of using /opt/foo is that they don't have to worry
> > about stepping on files in the main Debian distribution.
> >
> If the same file name in /usr/bin is provided by two packages then dpkg will 
> tell you at install time.

Unless --force-overwrite is enabled, in which case it will be too late. :-)

>  If the same name is used in /usr/bin and /opt/bin 
> then the only way you'll notice is when you type the command and something 
> unexpected happens (if the PATH order doesn't match which command you thought 
> you were running).
> Is this a benefit?

Same is true of /usr/local/bin. 

My experience (and I'll not claim it as anything other than that) is
that packages that go into /opt are often for a specific user or group
of users.  PATH doesn't get generally modified, just for that user or
group. They get what they want, and nobody else is bothered. OTOH,
something that *is* installed for the general user (a real compiler
instead of e.g.  HP's "it can sorta build a kernel" excuse for "cc") the
PATH *is* set in /etc/profile, and I never got any complaints about that

> Of course if Steve can provide an example of a proprietary Unix that
> has as little support for changing the root for packages as dpkg has
> which has /opt used for commercial software then it'll be a more
> convincing arguement.

Not sure I've parsed that correctly. Solaris's pkg manager has support
for re-rooting packages, but most everything I dealt with both from
Sun (outside of core OS stuff, of course) and 3rd parties defaulted to
/opt. HP's (when I last dealt with it, admittedly quite a while ago)
didn't support re-rooting (or at least not so far as I could determine
from the documentation), and pretty much everybody stuck stuff in /opt
there as well.

Actually, I don't really *care* what 3rd party commercial vendors
do. I'm glad they're building DEBs in addition to RPMs. My opinion
is that the FHS (and thus Debian policy) allows them to install into
/opt. I assume that their customers will let them know whether or not
/opt is a good place, and in the long run, that's what matters.


Steve Greenland <stevegr@debian.org>
(Please do not CC me on mail sent to this list; I subscribe to and read
every list I post to.)

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