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Bug#264952: apt-ftparchive: optionally merge in architecture-independent packages

Jason Gunthorpe <jgg@debian.org> writes:

> The expected operation is that whatever is invoking apt-ftparchive
> arranges for things to be structured so that it sees binary-all files
> while running. This is done in one of two ways:

> 1) New style pools way - the script that extracts the files lists unions
>    all and each arch together and produces a file list file compatible
>    with the FileList argument
> 2) Old style debian way - Even though there was a binary-all directory
>    the archive scripts were expected to maintain symlinks from binary-*
>    to binary-all.

> Both allow apt-ftparchive to see the all files when processing a
> per-arch package file and it will produce the expected output.

Ah!  Okay.

> What are you trying to do anyhow? I can't think of any good reason to
> split things up by binary-* unless you are maintaining a really big
> archive.. For smaller archives it is OK to produce a mixed architecture
> package file, apt/etc handle it just fine.

I'm trying to bring debarchiver's indexing up to snuff.  I've been
submitting a flurry of patches to it -- it was originally using
dpkg-scanpackages and dpkg-scansources, and now it can use apt-ftparchive
and can generate the per-arch Release files.  But I was trying to solve
problems I encountered in the right place, and from what documentation I
had, this seemed to be more of an apt-ftparchive thing.

With this additional information, I now know that debarchiver should be
creating symlinks when it installs "all" arch debs, and I'll go back and
see about getting that change into debarchiver.  (debarchiver doesn't
support package pools.)  I'm using debarchiver because, of the available
apt archive maintenance utilities in Debian, it seemed to be the closest
to what I needed.

Thanks for your help!

For my future reference, is there any documentation I should have turned
to that would have explained this sort of issue?  I'm coming into this a
bit blind, not having had long experience with Debian's archive format, so
I'm trying to puzzle things out from what I've happened to stumble across.

Russ Allbery (rra@stanford.edu)             <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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