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Detection of CPU and kernel (was: Re: Bug#268709: Architecture names should have a "${kernel}-" prefix)

[ Dropping CC to bug #268709, since this is a separate issue.  Please file
  a separate bug if you feel like it. ]

On Sat, Aug 28, 2004 at 09:14:33PM +0200, Guillem Jover wrote:
> [...]
> The other big problem is how to tell that a package is kernel bound or
> cpu bound. I would like to have aliases for those in the form of:
> 	any-<cpu>	(any-i386)	for cpu bound and for any kernel
> 	<kernel>-any	(linux-any)	for kernel bound and for any cpu

dpkg-architecture was created to address this problem.  The DEB_*_GNU_CPU
and DEB_*_GNU_SYSTEM variables provide a clean interface to the canonical
cpu and system we're running.

Merging two unrelated pieces of information in the same string when we can
use separate tags is not the nicest solution.  In fact, it was back in Nov
2001 (almost 3 years old) when I filed bug #118910 with my proposal to address
this problem.  Noone had enough interest in it to implement it, and the
scheme I would propose now is a "*_CPU <-> Cpu:", "*_SYSTEM <-> System:"
one-to-one mapping, however, this particular point is still valid:  for two
separate pieces of information, we should use two separate tags.

> Well in general there are too many assumptions that we are running
> under a Linux kernel, but that's due to Debian being "mainly" a
> GNU/Linux distro.

Indeed, but we are slowly fixing them..

 .''`.   Proudly running Debian GNU/kFreeBSD unstable/unreleased (on UFS2+S)
: :' :
`. `'    http://www.debian.org/ports/freebsd/gnu-libc-based

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