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Re: utnubu-desktop for the masses

On Sun, 2006-04-23 at 12:23, Javier Fernández-Sanguino Peña wrote:
> Hmmm... I'm not an expert but I think it goes like this:
> - metapackage in 'testing' which (unversioned) depends: A and B 
>   (in testing A, version 1, and B, version 1, get along together)
> - The maintainers decide that, for sid, A will have new functionality
>   that makes it replace B. So, in sid, A (v2) conflicts: with B (v1)
> In this situation, unless the metapackage is updated to reflect that change
> then A could not get into testing without breaking the metapackage (and the
> migration scripts would prevent that unless forced^Whinted to do so).
> If the maintainers managing the packages and meta-packages don't sync their
> work there is going to be breakage because of the later. The above is a
> simple example but things can easily get more complicated with metapackages
> that depend on *lots* of other packages. Users end up having to remove the
> meta-package (either manually, or because apt says so), losing the benefits
> they provide.

Thanks.  I can see how some kind of O(N*2) effect could make
that difficult for Ubuntu-style metapackages with hundreds of

However, metapackage equivalents of Debian tasks would have much
more reasonable numbers of dependencies - I think "desktop" is
the most complex with 18.

tasksel is a separate parallel unnecessary superfluous redundant
and largely opaque dependency lattice with some dependencies not
even determined until runtime (Test: ) and a whole set of action scripts
(postrm etc) independent of regular package scripts.

Far better to put the information in the standard dependencies
of a simple package which everything understands already (and
which tasksel could use to ensure consistency).

Many people prefer tasksel.  That's great.  Go for it.  But
please don't ban meta-packages for those of us who want the
simple solution which package dependencies provide and which
our programs can understand.

Thanks for listening,

--Mike Bird

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