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Re: postinst scripts failing because a new conffile wasn't accepted: Is it a bug?

Scripsit Frank Küster <frank@debian.org>
> Henning Makholm <henning@makholm.net> wrote:

>> You seem to assume that the *only* way to get this change into the
>> file is to forcibly discard all of the sysadmin's local adaptations
>> and install a pristine upstream version of the conffile.

> No, of course there is an other way:  dpkg offers an option to start a
> shell (or put itself in the background or whatever) to clear up the
> situation; or one can simply log in on a different terminal.

Exactly, but what happens then is

  1. User backgrounds dpkg, or switches to another window.
  2. User edits the file to take into account the new variable name.
  3. User returns to dpkg.
  4. User selects the "No, I'm happy with my own version as it look
     now" menu option.

Your proposal, if I understand you correctly, is to make (4) result in
the postinst failing even though the user _has_ taken care of the problem.

> But if the local admin doesn't want to do that, but delay merging
> the configuration file, there are only two possibilities: Either he
> accepts the new maintainer's version, or he refuses it.  And the
> latter choice leads to a failure of the postinst script in some
> cases.

This is not true. If he edits the file himself (but refuses the
maintainer's version because accepting it would lead to his own
changes being overwritten) things still work fine.

>> Why do you want to deny the sysadmin the opportunity to do the changes
>> himself?

> I don't.

You want the postinst to fail if he does the changes himself rather
than abandoning all of his local changes, right? That is _not_ how
conffiles are supposed to work.

> All I do is request some support for the view that if he decides to
> do so, he should in fact do it before filing a bug;

Of course it is not a bug if the package fails because the admin does
not properly adjust his conffiles.

But it _is_ a bug if the postinst refuses to do its work unless it
gets to overwrite the conffile with a pristine upstream version.

Henning Makholm              "Wir kommen nun ans Ziel unserer Ausführungen."

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