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Re: optional package in Build-Depends (how?)

Hi Russ,

On Monday 27 February 2012 17:59:28 Russ Allbery wrote:
> > Another package I was recently testing on GNU Hurd where some tests were
> > failing (even though the package is working).
> A bug in the test suite?  It's worth being careful about assuming that the
> package is working when the tests are failing.  :)

Sorry, sorry, never mind. :) Actually I couldn't find peace with it so I 
checked again I realised that tests actually are not failing on Hurd. 
Fortunately I was wrong. :) All good, no need to ignore.

> > So again I had to ignore post-build test(s) failure.
> I don't think that makes sense to do for Hurd, actually.  The package
> needs to be ported to it; I would let the build fail until that's
> happened.  That may mean just porting the test suite or the test suite may
> be uncovering a real issue.  That's generally what I do with any
> non-release architecture until I have time to do the (low priority,
> usually) porting work.  You don't want to accidentally hide failures that
> need porting effort by making the build succeed "artificially."

Fully agreed.

> > Testing still useful to me when I read build logs, but I'm very
> > reluctant to introduce a potential failure point with dependency more
> > strict than necessary.
> Making the *dependency* strict isn't going to add a failure point.  It's
> not like valgrind is going to disappear on i386 and amd64.

True, good point to keep in mind when considering.

> If the build failures are mostly due to bugs in the test suite, I agree
> with you.  That's the criteria on which I'd make the decision.  If the
> tests are finding bugs, then the failures are valuable and shouldn't be
> suppressed.
That's common sense, I can only agree.

> > And it appears to me that if tests failure is already pretty much
> > ignored is would be acceptable to make tests optional with weak build
> > dependency.
> However, Debian quite intentionally does not have such a thing as a weak
> build dependency, nor do I think such a thing is appropriate here.
> Rather, I think you should make a decision: either depend on the tools
> required to run the tests and ignore the test failures (if you think
> they're bugs in the test suite and not the package) if the output is
> valuable, or don't depend on the tools and skip the tests.

Thank you, I think this is a good advice. I'll keep it in mind.

All the best,

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