Re: build profile syntax ideas
On Fri, 19 Apr 2013, Johannes Schauer wrote:
> 1. How bad is the spending of a new metacharacter and how needed is the
> namespace system? If there is no other usecase for these namespaces to
> conditionally include/exclude dependencies, then why introduce it? Is the
> fact that we cant foresee the future strong enough a reason? Looking at
> other packaging system (including Gentoo) I didnt find ideas of other use
> cases for those namespaces. There is also this inconsistency of mixing it
> with architecture names as noted above and the readability/understandability
> concern. On the other hand, just dropping the namespace prefix is also not
> a good solution as a parser can then not decide whether a label is an
> architecture or a build profile name.
Just recently, reading discussions on debian-devel about having a single
package for multiple use cases with differing dependencies I thought that
it would be interesting to be able to tag dependencies in
Recommends/Suggests with the corresponding use case so that we could
install a package and the subset of recommends/suggests that correspond to
the use case that we're interested in.
So I tend to agree with Ian, it would be much more future-proof to have
a generic syntax instead of introducing another metacharacter.
(Furthermore the ">" and "<" are already used in many dependencies, so
it would not really stand out in the dependency line.)
And we already have wishlist request to extend the expressiveness of
dependencies so that some dependencies are only considered if a third
package is installed, this generic scheme could be a way to do it:
Depends: [...], iceweasel-gnome [if-installed: gnome]
So I believe that even if we can't foresee the future, I can easily
imagine other use cases for such a generic dependency tagging mechanism.
Raphaël Hertzog ◈ Debian Developer
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