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Bug#604397: debian-policy: require build-arch and build-indep targets

On Tue, Mar 01, 2011 at 09:01:31PM -0600, Jonathan Nieder wrote:
> Roger Leigh wrote:
> [out of order for convenience]
> > Just for the record, I've implemented support in debhelper's dh
> > command in #604563.  Once applied, this will automatically add support
> > to the huge chunk of the archive using "tiny" rules files.  cdbs will
> > be next on my list.
> debhelper 8.1.0 has such support now.  Thanks!

With dh and cdbs both supporting build-arch and build-indep automatically,
we are now in the situation that >50% of the archive supports these rules.

Is there any reason we can't now make build-arch and build-indep a "should"
in policy?

> >> * Roger Leigh <rleigh@debian.org>, 2010-11-21, 21:38:
> >>> I'd like to propose that build-arch and build-indep be changed in
> >>> Policy from "may be provided" to "must be provided" in preparation
> >>> for enabling their use.
> Personally, I'm all for it; ideally it would happen in the following
> order:
>  1. Providing build-arch and build-indep becomes a best practice.
>     lintian gains a check.  devref encourages the practice.

I wrote a lintian check which is currently in a patch proposed as lintian
bug #605012.  I'm not sure if it needs to be in Policy before or after
it's implemented in lintian?  I thought lintian reflected policy for the
most part.

It probably needs a little more polish (testsuite support) before it can
be applied, but the core checks are done.

>  2. Becomes a policy "should".
>  3. Becomes a policy "must".
> That sounds slow, no?  Yes, that's the point.  I'd like to propose
> that we not make most of the packages in the archive instantly RC
> buggy, today.

Agreed.  Having lintian point out all the packages that are buggy would
be very useful.  We can wait until the majority of packages implement
the new rules before making it an RC-buggy "must".

Is there any recent work on the rules checking in make which would allow
dpkg-buildpackage to use the rules if present, but fall back to build
if absent?  This would be the most pragmatic approach, because it will
both provide backwards compatibility with all older source packages, and
use the rules if present in new ones.

  .''`.  Roger Leigh
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