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Re: Proposal to avoid executable naming conflicts

Josselin Mouette <joss@debian.org> writes:
> Le mardi 08 juillet 2014 à 11:31 -0400, Eric Cooper a écrit : 

>> Since Debian package names must already be unique, we ought to be able
>> to leverage that to avoid having to fight over which package gets to
>> claim which binary name.
>> What about making it into a user's install-time decision,
>> rather than a developer's packaging-time decision?

> It sounds silly because the behavior becomes non-predictable.

> The correct solution is Solomon’s judgment: whenever such name clashes
> occur, force *both* packages to rename the binary, and have all reverse
> dependencies in Debian use the renamed path.

I do think this is context-dependent.  Some programs are so widely and
heavily used outside of Debian that people familiar with Linux expect them
to be available with a particular name.  In cases like that, I don't think
renaming the commonly-used program makes sense.  I understand the appeal
of strict fairness, and that by not renaming we're letting upstream "get
away" with camping on namespace, but I think the disservice to our users
outweighs the somewhat dubious benefits of having that fight.

That doesn't apply in this particular case, but I think that point was
relevant to both git and node.

(I made this argument at the time, with respect to node, in the TC, so
this is probably not a new viewpoint to folks.)

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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