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Re: ADV: Re: Is there a way to positively, uniquely identify which Debian release a program is running on?

Frank Lichtenheld wrote:
> On Fri, Jun 01, 2007 at 02:51:27PM -0400, Kris Deugau wrote:
>> (Mildly amusing sidenote to this discussion:  I'm finally convincing the
>> senior systems guy that Packages Are Good, and now developers for the
>> upstream OS seem to be telling me Packages Are Useless, because I can't
>> even count on a critical dependency being installed via the package
>> system.  <g>)
> ? I don't see that beeing said in the thread. Could you point out that
> for me?

Hmm.  Not explicitly stated, nor really implied, but several people
commented that a system may have backported packages, packages from
testing/unstable/experimental, software that's installed from source and
which the package manager is therefore completely unaware of - in other
words, no matter what you might find in /etc/debian_version or some
other nominal reference, the configuration and binaries on the system
may not resemble a stock install of that release at all.

Taken to the extreme, that leads me to the conclusion that Packages Are
Useless.  <g>  (Taken another couple of steps, it leads to "Everyone
should be running Linux From Scratch".)

(I don't really think so, and I think the argument about "The local
admin may hack the system up until it resembles Swiss cheese so why
bother doing <x>" has been beaten well beyond death in other threads
I've seen recently.)

Mostly just an impression I got from the trend of some of the responses.

-kgd, wondering how one would go about bootstrapping LFS raw from a
stack of printout and a single modern desktop machine, with no source of
precompiled executables.

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