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Re: Removing web server dependencies from web apps

On Fri, 06 Jan 2012 15:56:37 +0800
Thomas Goirand <thomas@goirand.fr> wrote:

> The issue is that most PHP packages in Debian have dependencies on web
> servers, most of the time with something like this:
> Depends: apache2 | httpd, libapache2-mod-php5 | php5-cgi

Sounds like the situation for which equivs was designed.

> Remember that a strong dependency is *forcing* users to install things,

Not quite. A strong dependency requires that something with that name
is installed - it can just as easily be an empty package which just
matches the name. Put that package into your chroots and the problems

> So, my suggestion would be to actually *remove* the dependency to the
> web server (and move it as a Recommends: if you see fit...). I would
> strongly advocate for this as being written in our beloved policy.

It depends which is more common - complex installations with a web
server available over IP but not visible to dpkg or simple
installations where the admin installing the application is also
responsible for setting up the virtual hosts etc.

How many of these packages do clever things upon installation like
setup their own virtual hosts or similar?

One reason why the database is not included in dependencies is dbconfig.
Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing is left as an exercise for
the reader.


Neil Williams

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