[Fedora-packaging] Packaging guidelines for Emacsen add-on packages

Ville Skyttä ville.skytta at iki.fi
Mon May 7 18:57:07 UTC 2007

On Monday 07 May 2007, Jonathan Underwood wrote:
> Dear Packaging Committee,
> I have placed a draft Guidelines document on the wiki for your
> consideration. This document covers the packaging of Emacs and XEmacs
> add-on packages, and provides two template spec files with the
> intention of lowering the inertial barrier to developing packages for
> (X)Emacs.


> Comments gladly received!

Quickly reading through it, here's a couple.

1) I think cases where install time dependencies on plain "emacs" or "xemacs" 
are desirable are very rare.  The usual problem with those is that they bind 
the add-on packages to the corresponding full featured variants, ie. ones 
built with X etc, so one can't use them with only the -nox variant installed.  
That's why I addded a virtual "xemacs(bin)" Provides to the xemacs and 
xemacs-nox packages - that'd be a better thing to have a dependency on than 
eg. "xemacs" unless the full featured GUI version is specifically required.  
The emacs packages don't have that functionality (yet?), so I think the best 
thing for them for now would be to have a dependency on emacs-common instead 
of emacs or emacs-nox.

2) At least in the XEmacs case, the dependency on xemacs(bin) should be 
versioned, like "Requires: xemacs(bin) >= 
$evr_of_xemacs_used_to_build_the_package".  The xemacs-bytecompiled *.elc 
files are in the vast majority of cases forwards compatible, but much less 
often backwards compatible.  See the xemacs-packages-base and 
xemacs-packages-extras packages for examples.  (Hm, I see those have deps on 
xemacs-common instead of xemacs(bin), will have a look.)

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