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Re: Bug#189370: acknowledged by developer (irrelevant)

On Fri, Apr 18, 2003 at 03:23:44AM -0400, Colin Walters wrote:

> > It breaks Policy to some extent but follows it to some
> > extent, IMHO.

> > Former tetex packages provided language.dat as a
> > conffile so if one changed (manually!) it then one would 
> > be asked whether to replace it or not everytime at upgrading.

> > I changed it a configuration file which would be generated
> > in postints (of tetex-base) and adopted debconf so that
> > a user can select to modify it or not with debconf.

> But the dpkg prompt was there for a reason; to preserve user changes.

> Your change may seem like an improvement, and in some ways it is.  But
> again, using Debconf is not a license to overwrite the file.

> > Though I didn't check this yet but if I (or some other tetex 
> > members) can understand it and find it useful for us then
> > tetex packages will adopt it but if not (and if the current
> > handling really breaks Policy), is it the only way to get
> > back to the former scheme?

> Well, it seems you're really not convinced Policy is being violated
> here.  That's understandable I guess.  I am hoping other people here
> will weigh in with their opinion.

There should be no room for misunderstanding here:  if you are using
debconf to ask the user's permission to modify a file, it means you're
doing something not allowed by policy to begin with.  Asking before you
violate does not make it ok!  (And if you're not violating policy, why

Debian's conffile handling is at the very edge of what Policy allows: it
gives the user the option of overwriting their local changes, *and*
gives them the opportunity to see what these changes are *first*.
Nothing less than this is sufficient; certainly, a one-time blanket
question of "can I trash stuff?" is not acceptable.

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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