Re: Must and should again
On 15-Apr-01, 20:16 (CDT), Julian Gilbey <J.D.Gilbey@qmw.ac.uk> wrote:
> I guess there are two conflicting desires here:
> (1) The Acting Release Manager's desire to have it clear what
> constitutes an RC bug.
> (2) Developers' desires to know what "must" be done in all cases and
> what "ought" to be done (but there may be exceptions), and what is
> currently a "desirable thing" but is likely to one day become an
> RC requirement.
> This is indicating to me that Anthony's view is correct for his needs,
> and Sam and my (and all of the other people who've raised the same
> issue in recent months) is correct for other people's needs.
As a maintainer, I don't have much problem with this, actually. I pretty
much treat MUST and SHOULD the RFC way, and don't sweat the subtle
difference; it makes (mostly) sense to me that AJ (or whoever) treats
them as RC and non-RC level bugs. I suspect that many of us do the same,
because most of the MUSTs and SHOULDs make *sense*.
I also have no problem in the idea that a maintainer can violate a MUST
if that makes sense for his/her particular case (e.g. the recent case of
libdvd (or whatever it was) that only made sense as a static lib, even
though policy seems to require a shared lib), but the fact that it is a
MUST probably means the maintainer will discuss it before violating, to
see if there's a better way.
> And therefore, it would seem that trying to simultaneously use policy
> as GUIDELINES and as directives of what is RC is somewhat misguided:
> a "good" Debian package will fulfill many more requirements than are
> considered RC.
Policy is about relationships between packages, and to a great extent
consists of "there are lots of ways to do this: this is the way Debian
chose." It's a not a complete specification. We've deliberately said
that the maintainer is pretty much ghod w.r.t. his/her packages, except
where it steps on other maintainers. The vast majority of us seem to be
able to deal with that and cooperate in a responsible manner, improving
our packages as best we can. Policy should be a minimum, not a maximum.
More to the point, we can have "violate a MUST ==> RC Bug" (modulo
deliberate maintainer choice with "good" reason) but there is nothing in
that says converse is true: there are lots of RC bugs that have nothing
to do with policy.
Steve Greenland <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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