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Re: Change default PATH for Jessie / wheezy+1

On Wed, Aug 08, 2012 at 05:48:35PM +0100, Roger Leigh wrote:
> On Wed, Aug 08, 2012 at 09:28:03AM -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:
> > Yes, we could file bugs and go to the work of moving things and leaving
> > symlinks behind to not break other things, but that's a lot of work.  And
> > it's ongoing work to keep things sorted into the right place.  Whereas if
> > we moved everything and left a symlink behind, that's way more work in the
> > short run but then we would be done and no one would have to think about
> > the distinction again.

> If we did want to do a blanket move of everything in /sbin to /bin
> (and for /usr/sbin to /usr/bin), we could do this in a single operation
> in e.g. base-files.  It wouldn't require any path changes in individual
> packages, but we would need to fix any name clashes first, and also to
> bail out if any were found during the upgrade.  It should be possible to
> do entirely atomically as well if we hardlink the binaries, and then
> replace the dir with a symlink.

You can't replace a directory with a symlink atomically.  So this is
near-atomic, not atomic.

More importantly, however, is the fact that dpkg won't know anything about
this change, so will be unable to detect file conflicts between /usr/bin and
/usr/sbin.  And we know we definitely *do* have such file conflicts in the
archive (see "node-like file conflicts").  Thus we could not guarantee the
integrity of the user's system when making such a change.

I don't see any gain from merging bin+sbin that justifies such pain.  Adding
sbin to the default PATH would be far simpler.

Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                    http://www.debian.org/
slangasek@ubuntu.com                                     vorlon@debian.org

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