compat packages

Michael A. Peters mpeters at
Tue Apr 25 17:34:14 UTC 2006

I've got some questions about compatibility packages, and whether they
are in the scope of Fedora Extras when nothing in Extras needs them.

Obviously if a compat package is needed to build/run something in
extras, it belongs in Extras for repo-closure (unless it is in core).

The gstreamer08 packages are an example.

A bugzilla I have open now is for the fc4 (gnome 2.10) version of
gtkhtml3. When I opened it, an upstream package I maintained did not
work with gnome 2.12 or newer. Then it worked, but was quite buggy.

Finally (after testing on my own machine for a few days, it just went
through the build system for fc5) upstream has a new version that as far
as I can tell, works just as well as the older version that was coded
for gnome 2.10.

But I'm still willing to maintain the 3.6.x version of gtkhtml3 simply
because I think Fedora needs to be more backwards compatible when it
comes to shared libraries, especially since the official line now is to
discourage static linking to the point where static libraries are not
wanted in our packages.

Every update of gnome - someone on some list or forum has problems
because libgtkhtml changed its shared library, and I think that when
possible (no file conflicts and someone is willing to maintain them),
compat versions should be readily available.

But do they belong in Extras if nothing in extras uses them, or should I
maybe subscribe to yet another list (Fedora Legacy) and see if maybe
some other people there want to make a "legacy library" repo for current
versions of Fedora?

Backwards compatibility is important to me, and I'm sure I'm not the
only one. When things are built against shared libraries which is the
better way to do it, backwards compatibility can only be obtained if the
older shared libraries are easily available from *somewhere*. But if the
consensus is that they shouldn't be in Extras unless needed by an Extras
package, I'm willing to campaign for a repo elsewhere. I'd just like to
know how people here feel about it.

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