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Re: Packaging _still_ wasteful for many large packages

On Wed, Feb 18, 2004 at 04:59:59PM -0500, Joey Hess wrote:
> > The problem is that every byte not shared is multiplied by 11 (soon
> > 12), extra Packages on the other hand only add a few bytes to the
> > Packages file. 
> More like a kilobyte per package, per Packages file. Yes, I have done
> the math, and it's not clear to me if a few kilobytes downloaded daily
> by many of our users, some on thin pipes, has a lesser cost than a few
> megabytes sitting in a few mirrors. Especially since bandwidth is
> generally more expensive than disk. That's why I asked where the dividing
> line is.
> If we do not do something, Debian may be completly unusable for dialup
> users within a few years. I can already only manage to update my
> unstable systems once a week. Is this important? More or less important
> than the number of mirrors we can field?

For a lot of people, it's been completely unusable via dialup for years now.
You couldn't fit the gzipped Packages files on a diskette for months now.
(Not that anyone should do that, just a simplistic measure of size.)

The dialup users have been de facto lost for a while now, we don't need to
continue holding back a 10% increase of the Packages files which are already
overly large for them at the expense of hundreds of megabytes of savings
accomplished by properly delimiting arch-dep from arch-indep data. A few
hundred megabytes can help a lot when your mirror is at 98% of the
partition... storage may be cheap for desktops but disks for serious mirror
servers still cost a fair bit to upgrade at random.

Note that I'm both a dialup user and a mirror administrator, so
I'm double-annoyed at Debian's growth :)

     2. That which causes joy or happiness.

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