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Re: stop abusing debconf already

On Sat, Apr 19, 2003 at 08:17:16PM +0100, Matt Ryan wrote:
> > Or maybe realize that Joey might perhaps know what he's talking about
> > with regard to debconf ... you could go find the text of his talk at the
> > last Debian Conference if you like.

> I realise he has an opinion on how things should be done. Depending on your
> own viewpoint this may be more influential than others as he is the author
> of the tool. As far as I'm concerned I'll use debconf how I please and if
> that's against the 'pure' view of others (ie/ *never* call it a registry)
> then its just hard luck.

Um, no.  *Policy* says that it may not be used as a registry.

- Debconf answers are stored in /var/cache/debconf.  Under the FHS,
  which is a mandatory part of Policy, the rules for /var/cache are that
  "[the] application must be able to regenerate or restore the data", and
  "the cached files can be deleted without data loss." *This precludes
  using debconf as a registry, and is by design*.  Since the position of
  the debconf maintainer is that debconf should not be used as a
  registry, if you use it as a registry then *your* package, not
  debconf, is in violation of Policy.
- Policy section 11.7.3 requires that "local changes [to configuration
  files] must be preserved during a package upgrade".  Using debconf as
  a registry implies giving precedence to debconf over the contents of
  an edited configuration file.  THIS IS A VIOLATION OF POLICY.
  Therefore, even if you resolve the above issue, Policy only allows you
  to use debconf as a registry *for information that is never written to
  a config file*.

I'm not sure why you think Joey's expertise doesn't qualify him to make
pronouncements about the use of debconf.  Unlike you, he at least gets
the answer right.

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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