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Re: Patching the upstream sources, and the debian diff

On Mon, 27 Dec 2004, Alejandro Exojo wrote:
> because upstream used automake 1.7.6 and unstable now haves 1.7.9 (in 
> automake1.7). This differences are now added to the diff.gz, but this doesn't 
> sounds to me the proper way.

There is no "proper" way. You have two good choices, and one bad choice IMHO
(and I do have a lot of experience on this :P):

  1. Tolerate the big diff size, and run the autotools stuff before you
     create the debian source package (that's what you did, and this is what
     I usually do).  If you do this, go read the README.Debian file of
     the autotools-dev package *now*.

  2. Patch the autotools files (*.in, *.am) at build time, make sure all the
     build dependencies are 100% correct (hint: conflicting with
     autoconf2.13 is *always* a good idea if you're not using autoconf 2.13
     and automake 1.4).  This means that the autobuilders will have to rerun
     the entire thing, and so will the users, etc.

     When you're doing a full dpatch-based packaging, this choice makes

  3. Live with whatever crap upstream used.  You do *not* have this choice
     if libtool is being used, BTW.  And it is a bad choice IMHO, I'm yet
     to see any distribution with better autoconf, automake, libtool and
     gettext packages than Debian.

> - Is there a preferred way of generating the source and/or the binary package?
> - Are not correct the packages that include generated files in the diff?

You can avoid *some* generated files getting into the diff, but not always.
It is a tradeoff of some disk space, for build time and complexity.  Do
whatever feels best for you.   I'll just recommend that you do not do (3).

Please read the autotools-dev README.Debian file. Really.

> PS: Grrr, and linda says it's a warning to Build-Depend on automake*, when 
> clearly many packages have to regenerate their Makefile.in.

Linda and lintian can only do so much.  Have a look on AM_MAINTAINER_MODE,
btw.  And read that README.Debian from autotools-dev ;-)

  "One disk to rule them all, One disk to find them. One disk to bring
  them all and in the darkness grind them. In the Land of Redmond
  where the shadows lie." -- The Silicon Valley Tarot
  Henrique Holschuh

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