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Re: [users] Re: Time to fight for our beloved DEB format!

On Sun, Jul 01, 2001 at 01:08:04AM +0200, Martin F. Krafft wrote:
> > 1) A transparent way to install LSB-compliant rpms in Debian is
> > implemented. Preferably one should be able to install rpms with 'dpkg'
> > command line tool, although an automatic format transform with 'alien'
> > could be performed behind the scenes.

In order to be LSB compliant, the application needs to provide a tool
for installing LSB compliant packages.  Using alien plus dpkg is
perfectly acceptable.

> sure, that would be a possiblity, but rather than merging and going
> with redhat (come on, they are walking micro$oft footsteps), DEB is
> very powerful and can easily exist by itself. a little
> cross-compatibility is needed, but rather than surrendering and
> converting to RPM, it should be the community's goal to establish DEB
> at least to be a second standard, causing vendors and distributors to
> package with DEB as well as RPM.

It was never the intention of the LSB to ask Debian to switch
packaging technologies.  In fact, if you take a close look at the
standard, you'll see that specification requires that packages which
choose to use LSB-compliant package (which is optional; some ISV's
like Oracle wanted to be able to use the same Java-based installer
that they use on all of their other platforms, and the LSB allows for
that), that what is specified is a *subset* of RPM, and is only
intended for use by third party applications.

These restrictions include (among others) (a) no dependencies are
allowed inside the package except for "lsb", (b) no RPM triggers, (c)
no deppendencies on the order in which the pre-install and
post-install scripts are run in the case of a package upgrade, (d) no
use of anby RPM extensions past what is documented in Maximum RPM.

The intent behind all of these restrictions was to make sure that it
would be possible for Debian-based systems to be able to install
LSB-compliant packages by using the "alien" program.  It was never
intended that Debian or any other distribution attempt to use the
restricted subset of RPM which is required for an LSB-compliant
pacakge as a native disitribution packaging system.  (In fact, because
of the restricgtions, it's essentially impossible to do so.)  It was
merely the least common denominator that could be easily be used by
all distributions, whether they were RPM or dpkg based.

Never fear, those of us who have been working on the LSB standard have
been trying to keep the interests of the Debian distribution in mind.
Of course, more volunteers would make our jobs easier.  If you're
interested in helping out, please feel free to send me e-mail.  Among
other things, creating a package which provides the necessary
symlinks, shell scripts, et.al. for Debian to be able to install
LSB-compliant pacakges would be very welcome.  

							- Ted

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