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Bug#512210: lintian: [checks/po-debconf] Extend template check for updated strings

Neil Williams <codehelp@debian.org> writes:
> Russ Allbery <rra@debian.org> wrote:

>> If I check the generated templates in the binary deb, how do I check
>> that the string was marked for translation?  We don't want to trigger
>> this tag on strings that aren't intended to be translated.

> TBH I was expecting that all questions would be translated - at least
> the help text (Description), even if not the possible answers.
> Otherwise, doesn't it tend to indicate that debconf is being used as a
> registry?

Private templates are extremely common.  We can't realistically do
anything that would warn about private templates.  It will just annoy a
lot of people.

Whether that's using debconf as a registry or not is debatable, but I just
raised this point on debian-devel and several people commented that they
prefer private templates for things that can be adjusted by preseeding but
aren't worth prompting the user about.  There are also reasons to use
private templates as a way of storing information about how the package
has handled debconf settings.  For example, krb5-config uses a private
template of type boolean:

Template: krb5-config/read_conf
Type: boolean
Default: true
Description: For internal use only
 We want to try and capture user changes when they edit a config file
 manually.  To do this, we look in the config script to read the file.
 However, in the case of preconfigure, the config script is run twice
 before the postinst is run.  Thus, we may read the wrong value before the
 edited value is written out in postinst.  If this is false, we skip
 reading config files until postinst runs.

I think this sort of thing is quite common.

for this sort of check, I want to trust the package maintainer when they
decide what is translatable and what isn't.  We already warn them if we
think they're not marking something as translatable that should be in the
source package checks.

> A quick check finds these files on my system that contain unexpected
> content like:
> Template: debconf-apt-progress/info
> Type: text
> Description: ${DESCRIPTION}
> Template: debconf-apt-progress/media-change
> Type: text
> Description: Media change
> How are those variables utilised? Where and how could these be
> translated?

debconf is currently exempted from this check because it does complex
things internally that Lintian can't analyze.

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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