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RFC on mysql 4.1 in sarge

(please excuse the cross-posting, i felt it was necessary to get all
 affected parties' input)


for some time now, christian and i have been trying to build in a
workaround for a rather tricky bug in the mysql-server and
mysql-server-4.1 packages, and we'd like to field some comments
on what other people (namely the security and release team, though
others are welcome to chime in) think.

so, the executive summary:

- people often symlink the mysql datadir (/var/lib/mysql) and logdir
  (/var/log/mysql) to somewhere else, such as /usr/local
- because these two directories are in the files.list of woody's
  mysql server, upgrading to packages in sarge leads to the symlinks
  being removed and replaced with empty directories.  
- this leads to a lot of confusion and service outages for people
  upgrading.  worse, there are scripts that need to be run on the
  database during the upgrade process that could leave things in an
  even worse state by having a mysql 4.1 server trying to use a 3.23

so after a lot of teeth-gnashing and brainstorming we've come up
with a way to prevent this from happening for upgrades of the
"mysql-server" package (in the latest upload of mysql-server).
however, the same method isn't 100% guaranteed to work for a direct
mysql-server/woody -> mysql-server-4.1/sarge upgrade, depending largely
on in what order the packages are processed by the package management

the following upgrade paths work:

mysql-server/woody -> mysql-server/sarge
mysql-server/woody -> mysql-server/sarge -> mysql-server-4.1/sarge

but this does not:

mysql-server/woody -> mysql-server-4.1/sarge

so at this point, we're not sure what to do to cover this last problem,
as we have no guarantee the preinst of mysql-server-4.1 will even run
before mysql-server/woody is removed.  the only fix we can think of is
to remove the two directories from the files.list of the woody package.

so we've come up with three options, none of which are great:

1 the most recenty woody security update caused problems for some
  people, and there's a package already waiting to go in to fix this
  problem.  we could put a fix into the woody mysql-server package into
  this package before the security team handles it.
2 if there's going to be a final woody point release, we could put a 
  fixed version in there
3 give up on trying to fix it, assume that symlinks might get lost, and
  put something in a README file telling users what they have to do
  in order to fix up their database after restoring the symlinks.

i don't see 1 happening, i don't know if the prerequisite (woody release
update) for 2 is going to happen, and 3 doesn't make me all too happy
as a "solution".

so, questions, comments, suggestions all welcome,



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