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Re: Successful and unsuccessful Debian development tools

Christian Aichinger <Greek0@gmx.net> writes:

> On Tue, Aug 01, 2006 at 10:24:32AM +0000, Reinhard Tartler wrote:
>> The sbuild package in debian however adds more features, like
>> schroot support. With this, it can use schroot to create
>> temporary, clean chroots from tarballs, block devices, create lvm
>> snapshots on the fly and so on. I read Roger, that even xen
>> support is planned.

Xen support is planned, but not for the immediate future.  I'm waiting
on its inclusion in the kernel, and a working powerpc32 port.  So it's
more of a medium- to long-term goal, unless there are any Xen fanatics
who step up to do it sooner :)

>> schroot is another very very useful tool. It gives me more or less
>> instant access to clean chroots on lvm snapshots for experimenting,
>> building, developing and testing.
> When I didn't know schroot could do this I wrote a script to do that
> myself:
> http://greek0.net/lvmchroot/lvmchroot_0.5-1.dsc
> It's geared towards creating and maintaining chroots on LVM logical
> volumes, creating snapshots as needed. It also takes care of
> creating the initial chroots on LVs, it can automatically upgrade
> them, etc.
> Plus they're better documented (IMHO) as schroot, for which I
> couldn't find any useful docs.

A complete copy of the docs is here:


I agree they aren't the most user-friendly in the world; some
additional explanatory material would help a great deal.

I think schroot has a slightly different focus, which would account
for the differences.  schroot focuses on allowing user access to, and
maintainence of chroots.  It plays no part in the initial chroot
creation, or performing stuff like keeping them up-to-date.  It
delegates this to other tools, like debootstrap and the sbuild chroot
tools (in /usr/share/sbuild).  lvmchroot, on the other hand, assists
with initial chroot setup, and snapshot creation but doesn't handle
the chroot(2) stuff to allow user access.

As a result, I think the two tools could complement each other nicely.
I would be very happy to add additional helper scripts to schroot, and
merge missing features.  One thing we don't currently do is allow the
user to specify the LVM snapshot name; it gets a UUID.  Having this as
an option would be nice.

Some of the sbuild scripts could also be merged with lvmchroot, such
as buildd.chroot.

> If the schroot maintainers agree we could try to merge my stuff into
> schroot.

That would be really cool.  We are part of the buildd-tools project on


so subscribing to the list would be a good first step.  The current
SVN is at



  .''`.  Roger Leigh
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