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Re: Bug#687001: ITP: optional-dev -- fake (empty) dev package

On Sat, 8 Sep 2012 21:06:29 Simon McVittie wrote:
> This doesn't really give enough guarantees (even if sbuild followed
> non-first branches in alternative-lists, which IIRC it doesn't). If
> champlain happens to be temporarily uninstallable on (say) powerpc at
> the time the empathy build happens, we don't want that to mean it
> randomly loses features on powerpc, then gains those features back later.

Right you're concerned that we may not always have all "optional" dependencies 
ready for build. 

I'm not quite sure this would be the case for generic unversioned 
dependencies. The assumption that "optional" packages are generally available 
from repository. If so sbuild may not build with the very latest version 
available but this is no different from current situation.

If we have an ongoing transition and some packages are temporary broken in  
"unstable" then indeed there might be a problem. 

Well, now I see it is a bit more complicated than I thought.

> It would perhaps make more sense if there was a way for the libchamplain
> maintainer to nominate excluded architectures, so empathy could say
> something like:
>     Build-Depends: libchamplain-...-dev |
>                    champlain-unavailable-on-this-arch
> where champlain-unavailable-on-this-arch is arch:any, empty, and built
> on exactly those architectures that deliberately don't build champlain.
> (I don't think my example works either, again because sbuild only uses
> the first alternative, but it seems closer to being right...)

If only we could express that we want to build with libfoo-dev if it is 
available but avoid to demand it... :)


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