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How should/does Debian adapt to various hardware features?

Since the MIPS port of Debian supposedly works on pretty much any MIPS
machine, that means it both works on machines like the old SGIs with
their massive floating-point engines, and on home routers where the CPU
doesn't even have any hardware floating point support.

How does Debian handle this?  Do `mipsel' packages always try to use the
FPU-less version of libraries (e.g. libvorbisidec), or always the
FPU-full version, or is it chosen arbitrarily on a case by case basis?

As a user, how can I make sure that I get the package version best
adapted to my hardware platform?


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