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Re: How to cope with patches sanely (Was: State of the project - input needed)



On Fri, Jan 25, 2008 at 07:26:04AM +0000, Andreas Tille wrote:
> What would you suggest to enhance the situation?

  For one, I'm not sure the "situation" is that horrible. Second, I
believe joeyh's proposal to be able to use some DSCM features to replace
the old diff.gz is an excellent proposal, OTOH, you will have a lot of
people complaining about having to use git (for his proposal) or $DSCM.
See alioth, we have mercurial, git, svn, still a few CVS users, arch and
bzr. There are zealots for at least 3 of them, and people that will
never want to learn anything but svn.

  I don't think there is One True Solution, though there are probably
ways to allow _any_ of the $DSCM to be used (and let's svn rot *cough*)
and have some Debian specific wrappers to allow the basic operations
(commit, checkout, ...) to be transparent to the people not knowing
about a specific $DSCM. E.g. I discovered debcheckout(1) recently that
uses the Vcs-* headers. This is IMHO the way to go.

  Once you have a $DSCM supported, then like joeyh said, it's probably
doable to change drastically how we upload and maintain packages. But
unless we are really wanting to do such a move, then I don't see what
could be improved in our packaging ways.

  Oh and don't try to ask for complete uniformity in packaging, there
are 1000 DDs, 10 times as many packages, different needs (you don't
package a perl extension like you package mozilla or gcc or a java
library) hence you can't ask people to use the same tools each time.
That would be like asking all our software to be written only in ruby.
Please, that's nonsense. What we have to fight for OTOH is to avoid
farcical tools, and that's why we have to get rid of dbs or debmake that
nobody uses anymore. I don't think it's clever to start a war against
quilt, dpatch, or cdbs. You may like them or not, you may despise some
of them, but those are tools pervasive enough in Debian.
 
  And well, yeah, you may not be able to understand a package using
dpatch e.g. because it's a really way too complicated patch system, but
well, then there is another DD that does, and will be able to provide
patches. We are a thousand, with very various abilities and skills. It's
nonsense to ask for everybody being able to do anything in Debian. This
time is long gone, let's have reasonable goals. We should not strive for
the "everybody should understand everything" but to a more reasonable
"everything should be understood and easily modified and fixed by a big
enough number of DDs"[0].


  [0] Note that this requirement would more or less disqualifies
      techniques like yada …

-- 
·O·  Pierre Habouzit
··O                                                madcoder@debian.org
OOO                                                http://www.madism.org

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