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Re: [Summary]: RFC: Standardizing source package artifacts build paths

On Saturday, May 2, 2020 11:53:26 AM EDT Andreas Metzler wrote:
> In gmane.linux.debian.devel.general Niels Thykier <niels@thykier.net> wrote:
> [...]
> >  3) We followed up with an [update to the proposal] were debhelper would
> >  
> >     optionally expose some of the relevant directories (some by default,
> >     others on request) with symlinks while still supporting the new
> >     layout. It did not attempt to change the debian/.build directory.
> >  
> >  4) There is not been any visible feedback on our updated proposal from
> >  
> >     people, who raised concerns about the path, on whether this
> >     alleviated their concern.  Nor any visible feedback on the choice of
> >     paths being exposed by default.
> [...]
> FWIW I did not followup there because symlimking a hidden directory
> just complicates things without addressing arguments against using a
> hidden directory at all. I have not received a real answer to
> 20200331172540.GA1563@argenau.bebt.de. - But please bear with me ...
> I do think it is a splendid idea to separate generated stuff from
> everything else, I think there is no real good reason for using a
> hidden toplevel directory. There is not a *strong* reason for not
> doing so either. This subquestion is mainly a bikeshed-type question,
> a matter of personal preference, so there is no consensus to be found.
> Please if you use a hidden toplevel dir just do it, do not complicate
> thing by symlinking outside the directory, which would sabotage the
> original aim of clearly separating generated stuff without increasing
> consensus. TIA.

We have some experience with this kind of question with Debian Python 
packaging.  The standard build system plugin, pybuild, use .pybuild for its 
build files.  This has good and bad points in my experience:

Usually I don't have to think about it at all.

Relative to upstream expectations, the build directory is non-standard so 
sometimes extra effort is needed to run tests in the proper location.

When there are problems, people have to know to look for hidden directories to 

When this was first introduced, there was a fair amount of work to adapt to it 
(IIRC, it's been a few years), but since then it seems like tools and people 
have adapted.  I agree that symlinks only complicate the picture.

Personally, I don't see any real benefit of standardizing on (making up an 
example here) debian/.build over debian/build.

Scott K

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