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Re: [kde] setting an /opt precedent

This one time, at band camp, Eray Ozkural (exa) wrote:
>So, what are the "reasons behind Debian not mucking about with /opt" except 
>the preconceptions of some developers? I think you would have to say 
>something like:
>* It is not very consistent with the directory layout many packages adapt
>Is there any other reason? I assume none, since front end files can be placed 
>by the distribution in usual locations by symlinking or by wrapper scripts.
>There is an _invalid_ reason which I had to iterate over and over again:
>  * /opt is reserved for system administrator's use.


As you have already pointed out, you *cannot* overwrite files in /opt
without the assent (and perhaps to be safe, the *explicit* assent) of the

So, you will want some way to check that the directory /opt/kde isn't
already in use, and then divert to another directory, keep iterating until
you find one that's free.  This of course makes it difficult when you're
upgrading your own package, you'll have to keep a record of where you
installed to.

Then as others have pointed out, you need to make the binaries available
immediately to the user.  You can't use $PATH, you can't symlink to other
locations in /opt, and for the sake of cleanliness, you can't really symlink
to /usr/bin, etc.  Your time starts now.

I think you're just making more work for yourself, regardless of the
technical merits of not installing to /opt -- and by setting a precendent,
you're making more work for everyone else.

>NO! Certain subdirectories of /opt are reserved for local system admin. The 
>rest of /opt can be used by the distribution, as explained in FHS with a 
>language that a high school student can easily understand.

You can't make that assumption... what if the admin wants to *later* install
a vendor package into /opt which isn't as amazingly flexible as your
package, and it overwrites your installed directory?  Then you've got
package management problems too.  The rule of least surprise is lost when
you next upgrade kde, as the admin's installation probably doesn't work

You'll be better off in the long run figuring out a way for kde3 to live
under /usr.

I think it's pretty clear what the consensus on using /opt in Debian is --
if you go ahead with this idea, you can probably start considering yourself
a third party vendor.

jaq@spacepants.org                           http://spacepants.org/jaq.gpg
I wore my extra loose pants for nothing.  Nothing!
       		-- Homer Simpson, New Kid on the Block

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