[Fedora-packaging] Requires(hint):

Panu Matilainen pmatilai at laiskiainen.org
Mon Jun 23 08:36:12 UTC 2008

On Sun, 22 Jun 2008, Tom \spot\ Callaway wrote:

> On Sun, 2008-06-22 at 02:10 -0400, Tom Lane wrote:
>> Hm ... so this committee takes it as a given that the maintainer of
>> RPM can arbitrarily reject any committee decision.
> Tom,
> I think you're misunderstanding our "lack of backbone" here. In the
> recent past, we've generated patches for RPM to fix "obvious bugs",
> submitted them upstream, and had them rejected without alternative
> suggestions (aside from flame wars). In many cases, our "obvious bugs"
> are described by upstream as features.

In the recent past, hmm? Care to refresh my memory, I don't remember 
rejecting patches for "obvious bugs"?

> The Fedora RPM maintainers (who are actually RPM's upstream as well)
> don't want to carry these patches either, taking an "upstream or
> nothing" approach to this.

Well, that's one of the big principles in Fedora, isn't it? :)

> In addition, when we've suggested fixes to RPM, we've gotten the
> feedback of "is it in the Packaging Guidelines"?

There seems to be a serious disconnect here, something being in Fedora 
packaging guidelines sure as hell isn't a prerequisite for getting patches 
accepted to rpm.org upstream. And I certainly don't recall asking for such 
a thing, if some response I've given has given you that impression then 
please point it out and lets straighten up the apparent miscommunication.

> Accordingly, we've adopted the strategy that:
> 1. It is not in the Packaging Committee's mandate (or ability) to be
> able to force patches into RPM.
> 2. The next best thing is to make guidelines which describe how RPM
> should/must be used in Fedora.
> 3. When applicable, the Packaging Committee will make suggestions based
> around our guidelines to RPM upstream in the hopes that our guidelines
> will be made obsolete.
> For example, it is only now that RPM is working on setting a default
> BuildRoot, something we set guidelines for over a year ago.

Yes, catching up years of abandon doesn't happen overnight...

As for Requires(randomcrap), sure it's a bug that RPM doesn't catch the 
error and bail out, and "hint" is just random crap as far as RPM is 

Now, of course the same could be said about putting versions into 
changelog "author field" - it's just an ancient bug in RPM it doesn't 
catch "trailing garbage after email address", it just happens to be so 
widely abused (and even encouraged in various packaging standards) that 
just making the spec parser treat it as an error is not really an option.

...if you catch my drift...

I'm all for making the spec syntax stricter and saner, but things are not 
always so black and white. Knowingly putting invalid things into specs 
just because rpm doesn't currently happen to trip on them certainly does 
not help the cause, see above wrt the version-in-changelog thing.

 	- Panu -

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