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Re: [rrichards@co.slo.ca.us: Open Letter to Debian Community]

> ----- Forwarded message from rrichards@co.slo.ca.us -----
> Subject: Open Letter to Debian Community
> With apt-get, you have to know exactly which packages you need to make
> a software system work.
> Let's take MySQL for example. To make it work, you need the mysql-common,
> mysql-server, and mysql-client packages. Technically, mysql-common will
> install without mysql-server and mysql-client. But it doesn't do you much
> good. With apt-get, you have to already know this. You also have to know
> the package name of any addons you might want, like graphical
> administration tools or Apache plugins. And yes, I was using the graphical
> interface to apt-get, not the command line.

Ok, this email is a lot like a number of other emails about the
user-frendlyness of dselect, just moving the topic for apt-get. But...

Yes, there is something we can think about. We have do admit that Debian
has too many packages in a way it's really hard to find something when
you know a little about the software.

But, fortunally there is a project called debtags[1], which address
exactly this issue.

The problem is that probably most people (I mean people outside Debian)
doesn't even know about it, and what I am saying we can think about is a
plan of having debtags as a core infraestructure of debian, just like
apt is today.

Maybe we could do it for etch, but maybe it wouldn't be ready at the
time etch releases *if* Debian don't say "debtags will be in the core
infraestructure for etch", I mean, if Debian puts debtags as a priority
for the next release, we will probably have the issue of package search
user-friendliness, if not solved, at least better than it is today.

One example of how debian could help debtags being integrated is a
policy which makes the developer the responsible of tagging the packages
(s)he maintains. Or even including the tag information in the control
file, generating a file that would complement the Packages file, like
Package-tags, or even including this information on the Packages file
(the last option doesn't sound good to me).


[1] http://debtags.alioth.debian.org/

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