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LSB Conformance Certifications and their lifetimes.

Some interesting questions came up on the LSB Common Packaging conference
call yesterday that George Kraft recommended I bring up here.

First some background

Task force 1 is in the process of working out the dependency checking and
enforcement component of lowest common denominator packaging.  Part of our
strategy is that packages of ISV software will use a "Requires: lsb" to
ensure that a conforming implementation has been installed.

This strategy begs some package to state that it "Provides: lsb".  The
current plan is to auto generate a package that depends on the packages
installed on a system that passed the LSB conformance tests.  

Of course, only a few packages of a complete distribution installation
should be necessary for LSB conformance.  Generating a minimal list of
packages is not seen as a challenge.

The recorded set of packages could specify the package instances just by
name or their name and version information with a spectrum in between. 
Each choice on the spectrum has implications on the maintainability of the
distribution and its conformance certification in the presence of
bug-fixing updates.

Now some questions

** How long should a conformance certification statement last? 

Option 1) If the full system versions are tracked (anal retentive option)
then re-certification is necessary against each and every change of those
packages.  Distro vendors want fast conformance checks for security
updates.  Can they self certify based on the conformance test suite?

Option 2) if the dependencies are looser (i.e. less restrictive versions)
then one generation of the boundary package per release is likely to be

** Who rubber stamps the package as a true compliance statement? 

Self certification vs. outside audit vs. the spectrum in between. 

** What happens with ongoing maintenance of the distro?  

Is self certification O.K.?  This would be nice as an option after the
major certification of a release where the DSV's already have a deep
interest in stability and quality anyway.

** Who audits the certification tests?  

Albert den Haan, Lead Developer @ Linux Port Team . Corel Corporation
albertd@corel.com  (613) 728-0826 x 5318
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