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Re: Sarge-built binaries running on Woody systems?

On Thu, Dec 29, 2005 at 01:45:55PM -0600, Matt England wrote:
> Sarge-built binaries running on Woody systems:
> Is this feasible?
> I'm not talking about package management...just the raw, binary.
Backward compatibility is not guaranteed. That's why, for example,
some packages are back-ported voluntarily. Openoffice.org version 2
is wanted by Sarge users whereas it's only currently in testing (to be
Etch when released) and unstable. Someone will probably back-port
it given time - but it's quite large.

> Are dynamic-library-management tricks needed?  Does the Debian testing 
> authority (or whoever is given responsibility of anointing Debian releases 
> for distribution) make any attempt at backwards compatibility for this kind 
> of stuff?
At this point we support security fixes for "old stable" as far
as I know, but new packages wouldn't go into Woody.  Build for testing /
unstable if you want to go into the next release. 
New packages wouldn't go into Sarge at this point: if your package
is jolly nice to have, build a version separately targeted at Sarge

> As per similar motivation for my previous redhat-on-Debian binary porting 
> conversation:  I'm hoping that one Debian build will work on many Debian 
> systems.

Given that Debian releases once every 18 months or so (with point
releases in between) but freezes prior to release- you're talking the 
difference between RH 7.3 and 9 or 9 and RHEL 3, or virtually the entire 
history of Fedora,or Suse 9.0 - 10. Glibc changes happen, as do compiler 
changes. I'm not sure even that a pure Debian build will work on Knoppix / 
Kanotix and possibly won't on any Ubuntu.

> Can I at least count on a Woody-built binary working ok on a Sarge-based 
> system?  In this context, how far "back" can I go to get "forward" 
> compatibility?  (ie, how many revs before Sarge can I go back to "build on" 
> and still get Sarge compatibility?)

None guaranteed. But at this stage in the game, there are likely to be
fewer and fewer Woody users.

> If there are reasons why the answer is "depends" instead of a flat "yes" or 
> "no": I would love to know these reasons.  This is what I'm specifically 
> hunting for.
> -Matt


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