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Bug#196367: debian-policy: clarify what to do about priority mismatches

On Sat, Jun 07, 2003 at 09:59:18PM -0500, Manoj Srivastava wrote:
> 	So fix the bug in the package, and clone it and assign the
>  clone to ftp.
> 	It is a bug if the package has the wrong priority, and it is a
>  bug if the override file needs fixing.  Just because there are two
>  locations where the fix needs to go in does not invalidate the bug.

What real benefit (substantial enough to merit a release-critical bug)
accrues from fixing the informational Priority: field in the package?

The bug in the package should *not* be serious. That is my chief point.
I doubt the ftp.debian.org team would be happy with 256 serious bugs
filed there in preference to a single one saying that the override file
needed to be sorted out before release either, but I'm not a member of
that team so I will leave it to them to speak up.

> 	In other words, I would object to this change, since this
>  would relax rules that allow me to just install base or standard
>  packages from a CD, without needing extraneous packages, with very
>  little benefit to anyone that I can see.

I'm not suggesting that the rule be relaxed. I'm suggesting that we stop
applying it in an ineffective place. Since the creation of the override
file, the only role I can see for the Priority: field in a package's
control file is to provide an initial suggestion to the ftpmasters as to
the priority that should be set for that package. We've never considered
mismatches between packages and the override file to be a serious bug.

Arranging for all overrides to be consistent is a task that needs to be
done before release, but one which can be done centrally, just like the
process of deciding which packages should go on which CDs. We don't
require all packages to carry an up-to-date control field saying which
CD they should be on! Consider the move from managing task packages as
metapackages to managing them as extra overrides for the Task: field,
which was done to remove a roadblock in the release management process.

Fixing priorities may occasionally require input from maintainers, but I
do not believe that this is the norm, any more than deciding position on
CDs routinely requires input from maintainers.

Colin Watson                                  [cjwatson@flatline.org.uk]

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