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Bug#681562: debian-policy: Consolidate the definition of the "base system".

Package: debian-policy
Severity: wishlist

Dear all,

the "base system" is defined in section 3.7 (chapter 3 describes binary
packages).  It consists of packages of priorities "required" and "important",
and these priorities are defined in section 2.5 (chapter 2 describes the Debian
archive).  The Policy contains the following additional statements about the
base system.

  The system-wide mail directory is <file>/var/mail</file>. This directory is
  part of the base system and should not be owned by any particular mail agents.

  The Debian base system provides the <prgn>tempfile</prgn> and
  <prgn>mktemp</prgn> utilities for use by scripts for this purpose.

  If a package needs any special device files that are not included in the base
  system, it must call <prgn>MAKEDEV</prgn> in the <prgn>postinst</prgn> script,
  after notifying the user.

  <footnote> The Debian base system already provides an editor and a pager
  program.  </footnote>

  The mail spool is part of the base system and not part of the MTA package.

I filed this bug as a reminder to try to consolidate the definition of
the "base system" in Policy version 4.


Charles Plessy
Tsurumi, Kanagawa, Japan

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