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Re: How to gracefully rename a package?

Am 24.07.03 um 16:19:15 schrieb Daniel Kobras:
> [...] But I also wanted to be nice to the user and
> automatically remove the dummy dx-dev once it's no longer needed.
> Therefore, libdx4-dev replaces anything in dx-dev, and dpkg removes the
> package. [...]

Cool strategy, but in general too complicated.[1]

It happens from time to time that a rename has to take place. Perhaps
the maintainer made a mistake in the past, perhaps upstream decided to
change the name of the program (Phoenix -> Firebird).

Currently, you make a new package, with Replaces: and Conflicts: and
stuff, but it will not be installed. So you make a transitional package
with the description "can be removed", but that's ugly. (All this is
exactly what Daniel said already, just a little more general.)

What I would like to see is some means to make this process easy. Such
as the following algorithm: If package A disappears from the
distribution, but there is a package B that replaces it, install that
automatically.[2] I'm not sure whether this might have any unwanted side

Alternatively, there could be a new control field, say "Supersedes:",
which would result in the above behaviour. Of course, there'd have to be
a change in policy...

In any case, package frontends would have to implement it first, so it
could be used only after the next release.


[1] The new package perhaps has a slightly different set of files.
[2] Well, perhaps not in pure apt-get, but in dselect.

|=| Michael Piefel
|=| Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
|=| Tel. (+49 30) 2093 3831

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