[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: [Debtags-devel] Re: Dummy packages and metapackages

On Sat, Oct 29, 2005 at 04:18:44AM +0200, Adeodato Simó wrote:

> >  * Metapackages
> > A metapackage is one of those packages used to pull in other packages.
> > If they are removed, it's likely that something goes wrong.  They are
> > used for various reasons, such as ensuring that one out of many versions
> > of a package is installed (like the python modules do) or ensuring that
> > a specific set of functionality is present (like the med-* packages).
>   Would it be unreasonable to ask that metapackages have to be _empty_,
>   i.e., that all their functionality it's in their control file?
>   Because the idea of tagging 'python' as a metapackage, when it
>   provides the Python FAQ, the Python Policy, and more importantly,
>   /usr/bin/python, does not sound too good to me.

Good point.  One sure thing (which was my point in the mail) is that a
metapackage is not a 'dummy' package in that it's useful to keep it
installed.  So we can leave my service annoucement behind and discuss
what is a metapackage.

In the CDD world, a metapackage is something that pulls in other
packages as a convenience, but can indeed contain files.  One could make
a simple CDD by creating a metapackage that pulls in the needed
application and also contains some documentation and branding.

One could say that a metapackage wouldn't particularly break if its
dependencies aren't installed, but it would just be useless.  On this
definition, 'python' wouldn't be a metapackage in that it would break
without its dependencies (i.e., they're real, sound dependencies).

This could be a good time to formalize a good definition of metapackage
and dummy package.  Cc-ing to debian-custom as metapackages are quite a
substantial topic over there.



GPG key: 1024D/797EBFAB 2000-12-05 Enrico Zini <enrico@enricozini.org>

Attachment: signature.asc
Description: Digital signature

Reply to: