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Re: e2fsprogs not esential anymore?

On Sun, 14 Mar 2010 18:10:03 +0100
md@Linux.IT (Marco d'Itri) wrote:

> On Feb 07, Luk Claes <luk@debian.org> wrote:
> > The whole archive needs to be scanned to see if no functionality of
> > e2fsprogs is used without (build) dependency. Dropping the flag itself
> > is just uploading e2fsprogs AFAICS.
> Since Luk is on vacation, does anybody else have any ideas about how to
> do this?

Unpacking packages, scanning the source for binaries contained in the
relevant package. We have infrastructure to do that kind of thing with
lintian and other tools. Probably the biggest barrier is someone to
actually run the scan and determine what to try and find.

Personally, I'm not that fussed about Essential anymore - Emdebian just
removes the tag from any and every package automatically. No ill effects
have been identified so far. Sometimes I wonder if Debian actually
needs Essential any more for anything particularly useful or
commonplace. Until you try to create a system smaller than a standard
debootstrap, it doesn't seem to matter whether Essential exists or not,
AFAICT. (Once you do try and get smaller, you're largely on your own
anyway and Essential isn't really that helpful in my experience as the
packages you're trying to remove from debootstrap are some of those
tagged as Essential, like perl.) Any package can be removed if you're
careful - a different kernel is trivial with BSD kernels to go into
stable releases, a different libc isn't hard, busybox can replace
coreutils - about the only thing you need to keep is dpkg because
otherwise it's hardly Debian-based anymore. ;-)


Neil Williams

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