[Fedora-packaging] Use of Internal Libraries

Toshio Kuratomi a.badger at gmail.com
Thu Sep 18 16:05:07 UTC 2008

Nigel Jones wrote:
> Hey guys,
> So I know we have
> http://fedoraproject.org/wiki/Packaging/Guidelines#Duplication_of_system_libraries which I think is pretty good, easy to understand and fairly simple.
> The problem I think is that some upstream's still want to ship internal,
> modified libraries.
> Prime examples are mono packages, I can think of Banshee, Cowbell and
> f-spot from personal experience.
> It's got to point where another upstream is giving me a little bit of
> hard time over it all, I even had a Debian developer agree with our
> guidelines (they have the same).
> Upstream says "it's a guideline not a rule".
> _MY_ question is, what can we (Fedora) do to make it clear that we have
> clear cut rules for why we don't want packages providing internal
> libraries?

1) We could rename the Guidelines to: Fedora Packaging Rules.

I know that many people like to say that the Guidelines really are
Guidelines and that they can be broken for good reason but I'd much
rather have them be strictly followed -- but make the process of
granting provisional exceptions easier.

Having "MUST" rules that people can choose to disregard is silly.
Remaining flexible about changing the rules when faced with areas that
they don't live up to is the aspect that we want to retain, promote, and

2) Better organization.  Each rule should have a short form and link to
a long form that explains the reasoning behind it.  This is something we
need to take up with the docs team so we can figure out a better way to
organize the rules.  CC'ing Karsten for this part.

3) I suspect that if your upstream is resorting to telling you, a Fedora
Contributor, that the Fedora Guidelines are non-binding, then no matter
what we do, he won't see reason.  We can do a better job of explaining
it and we can get other distributions (which generally understand the
reasoning here) to help put pressure on but at the end of the day the
upstream author will either see the light or they won't.

One thing we could try in the distro-pressure regard is taking this up
with the distributions group.  ##distro on irc.freenode.net,
http://distribution.freedesktop.org, and

Do people think that's a good way to go?  I'll send an email off to them
if so.


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