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Bug#550383: packages.debian.org: "keyword too generic" warning even without any found package

Package: www.debian.org

Hi Gerrit,

Thanks for your report, which is forwarded to our bug tracker.

It seems that the "too generic" criteria/message does depend only
on the keyword and ignore the remaining parameters..

On Thu, Oct 08, 2009 at 11:02:28AM +0200, Gerrit Heeres wrote:
> I accessed the package search on packages.debian.org through
> backports.org. I wanted to see if there is a backport for iceweasel 3.5.
> So I searched for package name "iceweasel", which yielded this search URL:
> http://packages.debian.org/search?keywords=iceweasel&searchon=names&section=all&suite=lenny-backports
> No search results are shown, but there is a message:
> "Your keyword was too generic.
> Please consider using a longer keyword or more keywords."
> The exact package name is too generic? As I am searching for package
> names it doesn't make sense to add more keywords. I tried it anyway and
> it resulted in:
> "Sorry, your search gave no results"
> So I tried to make the search less generic by selecting "only show exact
> matches", and by selecting a specific platform, but it still complained
> the keyword was too generic. Then I made the search *more* generic by
> clicking "all suites". That gave me results, and the message changed to
> this:
> "Your keyword was too generic, for optimizing reasons some results might
> have been suppressed.
> Please consider using a longer keyword or more keywords."
> From the exact hits section it became clear there is no backport for
> iceweasel.
> The first search should have resulted in "Sorry, your search gave no
> results", as there were no results to give. The actual message makes you
> believe you can get results by being more specific, which isn't true.
> This is *very* confusing.
> It seems to me the message may be based on intermediate search results,
> not the end result. Perhaps the matching package list is truncated
> before looking for the packages in the requested suite. If so, the
> search optimization algorithm could do with some optimization itself, in
> my view.

Simon Paillard

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