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Re: A sane guess at default Debian mirror for pbuilder

On Sun, 27 May 2007 19:22:26 +0300
Lars Wirzenius <liw@liw.iki.fi> wrote:

> > emdebian-tools:
> > 	Using 'apt-cache policy' to obtain information
> > 		-> told on IRC that it loses port number info.
> > 		-> probably picks up security mirrors too, which 
> > 			can't really be used for running debootstrap.
> I should have to dig up documentation, but I can't see that apt-cache
> policy outputs enough info to re-create the sources.list lines.

emdebian-tools doesn't try to recreate the sources.list lines - all
that check is required to do is identify whether the apt-cache policy
already includes a Primary Mirror. emdebian-tools then simply adds the
Emdebian repository (/etc/apt/sources.list.d/emdebian.sources.list) and
a Primary if a primary is not already in use. Primaries are essential
for cross-building so that the apt-cache can get accurate data for
whatever architecture is required. It's quite specific to emdebian, it
doesn't help that much in a general script like piuparts of pbuilder -
except that I would prefer that a primary is always available because
it makes cross-building so much easier.

> > debootstrap:
> > 	uses ftp.debian.org as default mirror.
> If ftp.debian.org doesn't contain all architectures, then that's a bad
> default, imho.

> > Probably difficult parts:
> > 	handling CD-ROM installation
> I don't think running pbuilder against CD-ROMs is a workable solution in
> the modern world. There's way too many CDs involved. Anyone who really
> wants to do that can be expected to go through the small amount of pain
> of configuring pbuilder manually.

(Same discussion happened in Emdebian - CDROM support may be possible
in the future but it isn't supported in emdebian-tools yet.)

> I don't think using debconf is a good idea. Any answer you get is valid
> when the package is installed, but won't be valid later. The answer
> should be generated dynamically, each time pbuilder (or piuparts or
> whatever) needs it.
> I propose that it be encoded into a new command,
> apt-default-sources.list or something like that, which, when run,
> outputs a sources.list that tools like pbuilder and piuparts can use.
> Put the heuristics into that command, and then it doesn't need to be
> duplicated in every package that needs it.

That would be very handy! The default could then be the
closest/quickest primary mirror. It would be important (from my
perspective) that this default is required to be a primary mirror -
maybe offer the user only the list of primaries and don't allow manual

(The current list of primaries is in the emdebian-tools postinst or
here: http://www.debian.org/mirrors/list )


Neil Williams

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