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Bug#368055: marked as done (debian-policy: Add a section about 'transitional packages')

Your message dated Mon, 19 Jun 2006 15:11:45 -0500
with message-id <87slm0c3cu.fsf@glaurung.internal.golden-gryphon.com>
and subject line This is a best practices recommendation
has caused the attached Bug report to be marked as done.

This means that you claim that the problem has been dealt with.
If this is not the case it is now your responsibility to reopen the
Bug report if necessary, and/or fix the problem forthwith.

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Debian bug tracking system administrator
(administrator, Debian Bugs database)

--- Begin Message ---
Package: debian-policy
Severity: wishlist

Since I just accidentally created a grave bug due to errors in a
transitional package I would like to propose the policy mentions them.

Section 7.5.2 of the policy deals with virtual packages already.
Somewhere near that section I would like to learn about transitional
packages. Quick proposal:

 Sometimes a package A unites functionality from a second package B
 making B obsolete. In this situation the package B becomes a
 'transitional package' that is just needed to move users to the package

 This is done by removing all files from the package B and setting
 the dependencies as follows:


 Replaces: B
 Conflicts: B


 Depends: A
 Description: Transitional package for A
  This is a transitional package which ensures users of B will use
  A in the future. It can safely be removed.

 Is it important that B is not just removed. Even the "Replaces: B" in
 package A is not sufficient for an automatic migration.
 [Even though 'aptitude' already seems to support that.]
 B can be safely removed after the next stable release.

(Note: I'm not sure whether the "Provides: B" is actually necessary. It
works without it. And I understand it that "Provides:" is mainly/only
there for virtual packages.)


-- System Information:
Debian Release: 3.1
Architecture: i386 (i686)
Kernel: Linux 2.6.10
Locale: LANG=de_DE.UTF-8, LC_CTYPE=de_DE.UTF-8 (charmap=UTF-8)

--- End Message ---
--- Begin Message ---

        How to create a transitional package that works and is not
 uninstallable is is nice, and perhaps does belong in the developers
 reference, but is not appropriate for policy.

Bershere's Formula for Failure: There are only two kinds of people who
fail: those who listen to nobody... and those who listen to everybody.
Manoj Srivastava   <srivasta@debian.org>  <http://www.debian.org/%7Esrivasta/>
1024D/BF24424C print 4966 F272 D093 B493 410B  924B 21BA DABB BF24 424C

--- End Message ---

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