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Re: Some observations regardig the progress towards Debian 3.1

On Tue, Nov 18, 2003 at 05:47:44PM +0100, Yann Dirson wrote:
> Joey wrote:
> >Packages in unstable have dependencies in unstable which may not be
> >met in testing, hence they cannot simply be included in testing.
> >Unfortunately we need to take care of this.
> I've come up at least once with a suggestion on how we could avoid this
> problem and increase the throughput of unstable->testing.  However I got 
> virtually no feedback on this.
> The original description is at
> http://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2003/debian-project-200305/msg00082.html
> Today, I'd rather describe it as adding a "pre-testing" stage, where
> packages migration from unstable would not take generated binary deps
> into account, and candidates for migration out of unstable would be
> rebuilt against pre-testing for migration.
> That would allow many packages to migrate much more quickly out of
> unstable, while still filtering out a good number of early-detected RC
> bugs.  Then the current method for migration into testing can be
> applied to pre-testing instead of unstable, and since there should be
> less RC bugs there, as well as less blocker packages (like a recent
> gcc, glibc, kde, gnome, python, <insert-favorite-here>), packages
> could eventually migrate more quickly into testing.

There are some good suggestions in your proposal, e.g. you suggest to 
check whether the build dependencies are fulfilled. The lack of checking 
for build dependencies in the current testing scripts often leads to 
packages in testing you can't build inside testing.

But you have to be aware that your proposal only works for the cases 
where the programs actually compile and work with older versions of 
libraries, the big tasks like getting KDE 3, GNOME 2 or a more recent 
Mozilla into testing aren't affected by your suggestion.

There might be new problems e.g. with inter-library dpendencies for 
libraries without versioned symbols if your proposal would be 

> There _are_ many things to think about, but it may be worth to
> investigate it, and see how we could handle the potential problems we
> can think of.

There's also a different discussion that should take place:

Is testing actually worth the effort?

Testing has it's benefits, e.g. it catches build errors and dependency 

After three years of testing, it seems that some of the promises like 
having testing always in a releasable state were never fulfilled, in 
fact testing was sometimes in a worse state than unstable.

testing with its lack of security fixes, aprox. 500 RC bugs and daily 
changing packages is not usable for production systems.

> Regards,



       "Is there not promise of rain?" Ling Tan asked suddenly out
        of the darkness. There had been need of rain for many days.
       "Only a promise," Lao Er said.
                                       Pearl S. Buck - Dragon Seed

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