Advices, comments? Bug#345651: passwd package should be essential?
I tend to agree with Kurt opinions below and thus, I'm tempted to make
passwd "Essential: yes". The opinions in the shadow package
maintenance team slightly vary.
However, given that this is an important decision, I think it is a
good idea to get the advice of fellow developers. So, please
(asking the -ctte is probably not worth it unless the discussion shows
that nothing really clear shows up).
----- Forwarded message from Kurt Roeckx <email@example.com> -----
Date: Mon, 2 Jan 2006 16:09:04 +0100
From: Kurt Roeckx <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: [Pkg-shadow-devel] Bug#345651: passwd package should be essential?
Reply-To: Kurt Roeckx <email@example.com>, firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm wondering if the passwd package should be essential or not.
And I want to start with quoting some relevant portions of the
Packages are not required to declare any dependencies they have on
other packages which are marked `Essential' (see below), and should
not do so unless they depend on a particular version of that package.
3.9.1. Prompting in maintainer scripts
Packages which use the Debian Configuration management specification
may contain an additional `config' script and a `templates' file in
their control archive. The `config' script might be run before the
`preinst' script, and before the package is unpacked or any of its
dependencies or pre-dependencies are satisfied. Therefore it must
work using only the tools present in _essential_ packages.
7.2. Binary Dependencies
The `Depends' field should also be used if the `postinst',
`prerm' or `postrm' scripts require the package to be present in
order to run. Note, however, that the `postrm' cannot rely on
any non-essential packages to be present during the `purge'
Currently, you can perfectly remove passwd since it's not
essential, and nothing essential has a dependency on it.
Bash used to have a dependency on passwd, but this was
removed in 3.1-1, and was replaced by one on debianutils
because of #208514. And debianutils is essential. I
believe a better packages for that would have been
So, passwd was virtually essential because bash had a
dependency on it, but now it doesn't anymore.
So why do I think passwd needs to be essential?
There are several things in the package that one might
want to run from one of the maintainer scripts from
debconf, like useradd, groupadd, userdel, ...
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----- End forwarded message -----