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Re: Bug#846970: Patch to document Build-Indep-Architecture field

On Fri, 2018-06-15 at 19:05:17 +0100, Sean Whitton wrote:
> Sean Whitton writes ("Bug#846970: Patch to document Build-Indep-Architecture field"):
> > > +``Build-Indep-Architecture``
> > > +~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

> Zooming out a bit:
> We do not normally add fields to Policy until they are already in use in
> the archive.
> Looking at codesearch.debian.net reveals that only a single package is
> actually using this field at present.  I haven't checked, but presumably
> the field is not supported by the Debian autobuilders.
> So I would like to suggest we just close this bug until those who would
> actually be involved in implementing support for the field chime in to
> say that it is needed, and exactly what's needed.

This has been discussed multiple times over the years [D]. I still
consider both the purpose of this field a workaround [W], and its
name to be potentially very confusing [N]. :)

Regarding the name, in addition to what I mention in [N], there's also
the fact that we already have Build-<foo>-Indep and Build-<foo->-Arch.
With the second being in a way a poor name, and while not Architecture,
it would make adding Build-Indep-Arch.* less than ideal.

I think a better approach for many of these cases might be
<https://wiki.debian.org/Teams/Dpkg/Spec/FreestandingArches>, but I'd
otherwise consider the more immediate and realistic cross-compiler
option to be way preferable (even the variant of building the
cross-compiler from within the package itself), than this field.

And I'm saying this as one of the perpetrators that maintained and/or
introduced many of the abominable packaging aberrations that abuse
the Architecture field and semantics in that way, and would need of
something like this. :)


[D] <…other earlier discussions omitted…>
[W] <https://lists.debian.org/debian-devel/2011/02/msg00534.html>
[N] <https://lists.debian.org/debian-devel/2014/08/msg00810.html>

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