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Re: Package variant selection policy using meta packages

On Sat, Dec 22, 2012 at 02:57:56PM +0100, Joachim Breitner wrote:
> Hi,
> Am Samstag, den 22.12.2012, 14:39 +0200 schrieb Andrei POPESCU:
> > On Sb, 22 dec 12, 13:17:32, Joachim Breitner wrote:
> > > Users tend to fall into one of three classes:
> > >      A. Users that, if they have foo-dev installed, always also want
> > >         foo-prof installed.
> > >      B. Users that want to manually decide for what packages they want
> > >         the -prof package and for what package not.
> > >      C. Users who don’t want any -prof package around.
> > > 
> > > Currently, we only really help user B. If user A installs foo-dev there
> > > is nothing that ensures that he gets foo-prof installed as well.
> > 
> > And a foo-dev Recommends: foo-prof is not suitable because?
> because we cannot tell what the user will want. For example, a user of
> xmonad will not want -prof packages installed, and an addition 400MB of
> useless stuff on his computer is not in his, and hence our, interest.
> Also, a user from the class A wants a stronger guarantee than just
> Recommends, which is just a suggestion to the package manager, but not a
> a hard relation.

No, that's not true; a Recommends is not a Suggests.

Yes, I'm aware you didn't mean to say that. However, the very
definition of Recommends implies that it is stronger than a suggestion,
yet less than a hard dependency. It seems perfectly suited for your
purpose. It covers case A perfectly, and B too, with some effort (but
then, users in class B need to excert some effort anyway; the difference
is only that now they need to decide which packages not to install when
installing a -dev package, rather than which packages to install in
addition to their -dev packages).

It doesn't cover class C, but then that can be covered quite easily by
having all packages with profiling information have something like

Provides: haskell-profiling

With that, users in class C can use equivs to create a package which

Conflicts: haskell-profiling

And then they'll never get any -prof packages installed, without any
need for these metapackages.

Copyshops should do vouchers. So that next time some bureaucracy requires you
to mail a form in triplicate, you can mail it just once, add a voucher, and
save on postage.

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