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Re: Architecture restrictions and arch: all binary packages

On Fri, Jun 10, 2005 at 01:58:18AM -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:
> Hello folks,
> I'm working on the next release of the OpenAFS packages, and I'd really
> like to resolve a long-standing annoyance to the buildds that the package
> at present currently causes.  But I'm not sure the best way to do it.
> Of the architectures that Debian supports, OpenAFS does not support arm,
> m68k, mips, or mipsel.  It's unlikely that it will in the forseeable
> future; it requires a kernel component and no one seems to be working on
> ports.

> Right now, therefore, the buildds for those four platforms try to build
> every OpenAFS release, install all its dependencies, and then error out in
> the configure script.

So your package correctly fails to build on unsupported architectures.
The only problem is wasting buildd time on it -- in this case, the
correct course of action would be to ask the Packages-arch-specific[1]
file maintainers to include this fact.

> There was one suggestion in the bug log from Goswin von Brederlow:
> | 1. Build-Depend/Conflict on the architecture
> | 
> | Build-Depends: type-handling
> | Build-Conflicts: mips, mipsel, ia64
> | 
> | That way an attempt to build on an unsuported architecture will fail
> | with a Build-Conflict.
> but in addition to seeming like kind of a hack, I'm not sure that this
> will do anything other than produce a better error message.  I'd certainly
> like to produce a better error message, and will do that if all else fails
> (although I'm not sure this is the best mechanism to do so), but isn't
> there any way to tag the package so that the buildds won't even try?

Yes, see above -- and indeed this is a terrible hack I certainly won't
suggest -- your package fails with a reasonably sensible error message
(kernel modules not supported) now, rather than just dependency issues
which make it unclear at first for potential what type of porting issue
is over here.

[1] http://cvs.debian.org/srcdep/Packages-arch-specific?rev=HEAD&cvsroot=dak&content-type=text/vnd.viewcvs-markup

Jeroen van Wolffelaar
Jeroen@wolffelaar.nl (also for Jabber & MSN; ICQ: 33944357)

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