[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Bug#419467: Whoa, upstream wontfix?

Judging by the volume of responses, I'll assume I've hit a nerve.
You all are aware that what is happening with glibc is unfriendly but
you're not sure why.

The reason why is that libc6 is not a random package which you can
individually decide to upgrade or not upgrade, it is a critical base
package which will be upgraded due to (often spurious) dependencies
from many other packages which may be desirable to upgrade.

glibc is a C library.  The job of a C library is to perform the basic
lowest-common-denominator functions in a lowest-common-denominator way.
It is bad enough that glibc contains extensive gcc-dependent code.
Worse that it contains extensive Linux-dependent code.  But tying your
most basic system library to the newest stable kernel?  Insanity.

Let's put it another way...my system has been stable for about a decade.
Most of my packages predate sarge.  Some get updated nearly yearly.
Other packages which are at the base of many dependencies, like libc6,
will get updated practically monthly.  I use Debian, and recommend it
to people, specifically because this is possible.  I am not the only one
who does so.  About the only thing which can happen to Debian to change
this fact is introducing spurious dependencies into libc6.  I assume it
is not coincidental that the libc6 package only has one depends (tzdata)
-- it is *meant to be the lowest common denominator!*

And re: xfree86...yeah, it sucks, but upgrading X has sucked for every
Debian release I've ever used.  This is acceptable because X is
"optional", but libc6 is not.  If you allow the libc6 package to become
broken in this fashion, this vital functionality of smooth upgrading
disappears forever, for all users in all instances.

- Greg

Reply to: