[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Bug#681289: debian-policy: Changelog and copyright should be package metadata

Raphaël Hertzog <hertzog@debian.org> writes:

> We should thus modify the policy to say:

> 1/ that the changelog and copyright files ought to be installed in the
>    DEBIAN directory along with the other control files

>    (this will require changes in dh_installdocs and dh_installchangelogs)

> 2/ that programs that want to retrieve the changelog and/or copyright file
>    of an installed package should try to use "dpkg-query --control-show <pkg>
>    <changelog|copyrigh>" and fall back to the usual path if that fails.

>    Those interfaces are available in wheezy's dpkg (>= 1.16.5).

> 3/ that programs that want to retrieve the changelog and/or copyright file
>    of a .deb file should use dpkg-deb -I <file> <changelog|copyrigh>" (or
>    look for the changelog/copyright file in the directory extracted
>    with dpkg-deb -e <file>)

Just a quick note: while we can certainly discuss this here, Policy cannot
change until any changes to dpkg required to support this (such as
unpacking those files in an appropriate place) is already implemented in a
version that's already in the archive, since I expect this to require
changes to dpkg (see below).  All packages that use this approach are
probably also going to need a dependency on an appropriate version of

> QUESTION: Shall we design some solution to ensure that
> /usr/share/doc/<pkg>/{changelog.Debian.gz,copyright} are kept during the
> transition period ?

At first glance, I think a major Debian upgrade is probably enough of a
break to not have to keep compatibility files in the old locations *if* we
track down the various tools in Debian and change them to use
dpkg-query/dpkg-deb by default and fall back on the other location.  I
could be too aggressive about this, though.

HOWEVER, I think putting those files in a clear place on the file system
so that they can be easily read via a pager by the end user without using
dpkg-query commands is not only mandatory for the transition period but
mandatory permanently.  I would expect dpkg to do this.  That location
could be in /var/lib/dpkg/copyright and /var/lib/dpkg/changelogs or some
similar place, however.  (And arch-qualified when needed, of course.)

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

Reply to: