Bug#485878: g++-3.4 no longer in testing
On 6/11/08 6:27 PM, Matthias Klose wrote:
IMO our primary focus is the distribution, which doesn't require
g++-3.4 for building packages;
The provision of packages is so that people who need the software can
use it. For example, the reason Debian contains apache2 is so that
people can run a web server. Surely the reason g++ is in the distro is
so that people who need to do C++ development have a compiler available
to them. To say that g++ is only there for the benefit of the system
itself seems unreasonable. Would you say the same of fortran, ada,
pascal or haskell compilers?
We cannot provide you with a repository of old compiler versions.
I guess there are limits, but would it really cost you much at all to
keep the g++-3 series in the distro for a while longer?
Also, it doesn't seem reasonable to throw out g++3.4 when gcc-3.4 is
still there. I guess your answer is that there are still packages that
need gcc-3.4 and none that need g++-3.4, but I would have thought it
made sense to keep the two together.
Sometimes it feels like testing is the poor relation in the Debian
world, and so it's not so surprising that many people have "defected"
to Ubuntu. Debian testing works well for someone like myself, who
wants a reasonably stable application development platform (ie not
sid) but needs access to relatively up-to-date libraries (eg GTK).
I don't see the relation to Ubuntu; these changes will be merged into
the current Ubuntu development release with the next merge. There's no
special handling unless the MOTU developers decide on it.
FYI, g++-3.3 and -3.4 are both in Intrepid, and also in Hardy which is
roughly equivalent to where lenny is at right now.
I guess this is not the place to have a philosophical debate, but the
point I am making is that Debian testing is often broken for practical
purposes, and the developers don't really seem to care. The Debian
developers put their effort into sid or unstable, and don't seem to care
much about testing except as a holding place on the way to stable.
However, for a great many desktop users, stable is too old and sid is
too new. If testing was looked after properly, I think it would suit a
lot of people very well. However, for a system that's actually usable
people seem to be much better off with Ubuntu. I really want to stay
with Debian, but I'm not sure how much longer I'm going to have the
patience for it.
Taking the g++-3 series out of testing seems to me to be another example
of a lack of interest in the practical usefulness of the testing distro.
If testing is to serve its purpose, which is to give packages more
extensive testing, it needs to be used by a good number of people.
However, people are going to use it if it doesn't serve any practical needs.
My comments extend to the whole distro, not just g++. I am thinking of
other packages like MonoDevelop, which was completely absent from
testing for a long time, although it was right there in Ubuntu. When I
asked about it, the maintainer just talked about backporting it into
stable, even though I'd already explained that stable wasn't appropriate
Your statement about "primary focus" seems to suggest that the needs of
people who actually want to use the software on the system aren't as
important as the needs of the people who build it. If the majority of
Debian developers think that way, Debian is doomed as a distro that
ordinary people want to use.
Again, I'm sorry to be so off-topic. I'm mostly trying to justify my
request for g++-3.4, although if there is a place where I could
legitimately discuss my concerns about Debian testing in general, I'd be
glad if you could point me to it.