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Re: And now for something completely different... etch!

On Tuesday 07 June 2005 22:40, Olaf van der Spek wrote:
> Petri Latvala wrote:
> > On Tue, Jun 07, 2005 at 11:40:55AM +0200, Olaf van der Spek wrote:
> >>The ability to have multiple versions of a package installed at the same
> >>time.
> >
> > (Sorry Olaf, for getting this twice, my fingers work too fast)
> >
> > No, dear $DEITY. This "feature" is the major thing I hate about
> > rpms. It's so easy to get wrong and install a package's new version
> > side-by-side when you meant to update the old one. And don't say "just
> > be careful" when there are people in the world who are not seasoned
> > sysadmin veterans who audit every init.d script and whatnot.
> >
> > Making installing another version on the side as a
> > --force-this-I-really-want-to-kick-myself option would not be as bad,
> > but still as bad. This just won't work. Both versions supply
> > $PATH/$FILE, and then what?
> Supporting side-by-side file installation isn't (that) simple. But that
> doesn't mean it wouldn't be useful.
> A mechanism would be needed to specify which version of an application
> should be run. Should this be system-wide, per-user, per-environment?
Being able to install a package, not as root but as an ordinary user (and
obviously some packages can not do this as they need access to 
restricted resources) would be really useful.  Yes I can do this as a chroot
or in a virtual system, but that requires a complete install.  

It has often struck me as odd that the structure of program directories
and control files at the user level is different to that at the system level.
So while having a bin directory in a user's home is quite normal, having
an etc directory is not.  Instead control files tend to be hidden in .xxxx
directories.  But I guess this is not a debate for Debian, rather for the
FHS.  If one had an etc directory in a home directory then programs 
you run would need to look for unrestricted options in your etc copy of any
control files before looking in the system wide etc directory.

> > 1) divert the other? what's the use of another package version then
> That depends on system-wide vs per-user vs per-environment.
> > 2) install to another dir / another name of the file? Again, what's
> > the use
> >
> > 3) this is a library so it only has a .so file with another soname so
> > no name clashes. Hey, oops, different library soname already means a
> > different package (this, I think, is the reason why rpm supports
> > multiple versions)
> Does it?
> I thought minor updates didn't change soname?

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