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Size of Optional - policy and name for new Priority

Ian proposes:

> It's clear that Optional is far too large.  Although we nominally say
> that packages for which you need to have a special requirement before
> you want to install them should go in Extra, this rule hasn't been
> well enforced, and is in any case contentious.

I agree...in fact I'd like if this was a goal for potato.

I think it is important that we have a complete and identifiable
desktop/small server system, including X with a nice maintained window

> Ideas I have had so far are:
>    Usual
>    Common
>    Better
>    Good
>    Useful
>    Widespread
>    Commended

Of these `Commended' in the best, IMHO.  Perhaps `Core' even if that may
sound like more important than `Standard'.

Ian also raises several QA issues that these `Better' packages should
adhere to.  I suppose that the same requirements must then also hold for
Required, Important, and Standard packages?

> * Better Packages should be easy to install; they should be stable,
> have simple installation procedures so that they are very likely to
> install without problems, and should adhere even more strongly to our
> rule that packages should not ask configuration questions unless
> absolutely necessary.  Complexity in installation scripts etc. must be
> justified.

Agreed -- in fact I'd prefer if we decide that from a certain point on they
are required to not ask *any* configuration questions except perhaps
through the debian configuration database interface...that might be just
the leverage that is needed for that effort to take off.

> * Better Packages should not impair system security.  A strong case
> will have to be made for programs which are setuid, include daemons
> which run as root, or which listen on network ports.  (setgid games
> and perhaps certain other exceptions might be made.)

I'd love if `Better Debian' could be marketed as the most secure firewall
etc. basis...

> * Better Packages should justify the disk space, network bandwidth,
> and installation time they take up.  So, large packages need much
> better justifications than small ones.

It'd then also be nice to have an Official Better Debian CD (just one :).

> * The set of Better packages should be decided upon by a small group.

The QA group seems like the obvious choice for this -- in fact I believe
that the QA groups has much too little emphasis in the project and should
be strengthened (yes, I know, I should join it, then :).  Also it would be
useful if QA and security had closer ties, as they should with the release
manager (hey, this sounds like I'm proposing a junta).

What says?


Kristoffer Høgsbro Rose, phd, prof.associé  <http://www.ens-lyon.fr/~krisrose>
addr. LIP, Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon, 46 Allée d'Italie, F-69364 Lyon 7
phone +33(0)4 7272 8642, fax +33(0)4 7272 8080   <Kristoffer.Rose@ENS-Lyon.FR>
pgp f-p: A4D3 5BD7 3EC5 7CA2 924E D21D 126B B8E0   <krisrose@{debian,tug}.org>
**** PS: See pictures of Sofus Albert Høgsbro on my web page cited above! ****

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