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Re: devel files and libraries in /lib

On Wed, Jan 05, 2011 at 12:44:34PM +0100, Olaf van der Spek wrote:
> On Wed, Jan 5, 2011 at 1:25 AM, Roger Leigh <rleigh@codelibre.net> wrote:
> > Well, that's the issue at hand.  The reason I mentioned this is
> > because I believe that the / and /usr separation is a case where we
> > should stop to consider the "bigger picture" rather than just the
> > immediate problem. Solving that would solve the /usr/lib and /lib
> > issue as a natural consequence.
> What about the other stuff in /usr? games, include, local, share, src?

Well, they end up on / to give you /games, /include, /local, /share
and /src.  Because /usr is a symlink to /, these are still accessible
as /usr/games, /usr/include etc. for full backward compatibility.

> > All locations managed by dpkg must be considered a unified whole; it
> > does not make any sense to share one part and not another.  They must
> > be updated together or else the system will be left in a broken and
> > inconsistent state.  A separate /usr is no longer required to boot the
> > system now we have initramfs.  In consequence, there's no reason to
> > have /bin separate from /usr/bin, /lib from /usr/lib etc.  It makes
> > sense to have /var separate (writable).  It makes no sense to have /usr
> > separate.
> You're right. Is there a project goal for this yet?

No, that's one of the reasons I've brought it up.

Practically speaking, this can be done fairly easily.  There's no
need to ban having a separate /usr at all.  Having /usr as a symlink
to / just needs to be a supported option.  This would need:

• lintian checks to look for a package using the same path in /usr and
  / (which would result in one being overwritten).  This would become
  a bug; currently it's allowed.  Fixing such broken packages would be
  a prerequisite to allowing this.
• The installer would allow installation of a new system without /usr.
  It could even be the default eventually, but would allow a separate
  /usr if you partitioned it with one.  (But for new installs, what
  would be the point?)
• Some features currently break with a separate /usr.  Rather than
  spending lots of effort on supporting these with hacks (as for the
  crypto stuff) and shuffling bits of packages between /usr and /, we
  could simply indicate that they don't work with a separate /usr (we
  can even detect this and warn appropriately).

Obviously given the fact that we have widespread usage of separate
/usr, we would need to allow upgrades of such systems for the
forseeable future.


  .''`.  Roger Leigh
 : :' :  Debian GNU/Linux             http://people.debian.org/~rleigh/
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