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Re: Real Life hits: need to give up packages for adoption

On Tue, May 30, 2006 at 01:45:10PM -0400, Roberto C. Sanchez wrote:
> Christoph Haas wrote:
> > 
> > I'm currently looking into several systems. Usually I use Subversion and
> > svn-buildpackage but due to a lot of trouble with svn-buildpackage I
> > have moved away from repositories for my Debian packages lately.
> > 
> Out of curiousity, what problems have you encountered with
> svn-buildpackage?  Personally, I have transitioned all the packages that
> I maintain solo into it, as well as some of the package maintenance
> teams I am on use it.  I have not encountered any problems.

Yes, of course. Besides some minor things I don't quite like about
Subversion (merging looks like black magic for me and getting out old
revisions of a file means typing the full URL for no reason) these are
the actual problems I encountered with svn-buildpackage:

* svn-upgrade

Upgrading from a new upstream tarball has never worked here. Matthijs
Mohlmann and I are maintaining the "pdns" (PowerDNS) package in a
Subversion repository. That software isn't trivial but it's also no
rocket science. Still svn-upgrade choked and left us alone like
"something didn't work half way - what do you want to do?" and we ended
up with a borked repository. Up to now we made a backup of the
repository beforehand and took our chances. I believe we merged in the
upstream changes manually. I didn't want to understand what svn-upgrade
is doing under the hood so I felt left alone there.

* svn-inject

Injecting new packages through svn-inject fails here. I get errors about
the MKCOL method not being allowed on the remote WebDAV server. Perhaps
it's a problem that the Apache runs on Sarge while I'm developing on

* svn-buildpackage

The main script for building a package works well here. Just that the
build-area doesn't seem to be tidied up automatically. A few failed
attempts of building a package and that directory grows here. But
building a package from the repository through pbuilder is very nice.

Kudos to Eduard Bloch though. The scripts are pretty sophisticated. And
I already spent some time getting it working with pbuilder (see [1]).

In the end I still favor Subversion over any other RCS. Although Simon
Richter made me try Git today. And I like to try out new things so I can
find better arguments against it. :)

> The only problem I have encountered so far is that the Horde team uses
> Arch, which I simply cannot understand.  I have spent quite a while
> reading through the documentation and messing with it, but Arch seems to
> me to not make any rational sense.

Neither to me. Bazaar (as made and used by the Ubuntu staff) seems to be
a "better arch". Still I couldn't be convinced to use it.

Disclaimer: I'm not a Subversion guru. So I might as well just be


[1] http://workaround.org/moin/SvnBuildpackage
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