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"register" files in dpkg database programmatically? (was Re: How Debian Deals with Data)

[Christopher Baines]
> I would consider the best solution to be a mixture of the two, so the
> symbolic package handles fetching the data, but then tells dpkg what
> files its putting where.

I don't really care that much about huge data packages, but this jumped
out at me.  It would be useful in any number of situations to be able
to "register" a file with dpkg: tell dpkg that a given package owns a
given file, so that it is automatically removed when the package is
removed or upgraded.  I can see this being used in many postinst
scripts, so as to simplify or eliminate the corresponding postrm.

(It's possible that some people would want to use this capability in
the sense that a package _upgrade_ preserves the file but package
_removal_ removes it.  Or even that upgrade and removal both preserve
the file, but purge removes it.  So if there are 3 desirable behaviors
for the same basic feature, maybe that's a sign that it is a bad idea
after all.)
Peter Samuelson | org-tld!p12n!peter | http://p12n.org/

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