[Fedora-packaging] does removing a package also remove package data?

Rex Dieter rdieter at math.unl.edu
Wed Nov 18 17:45:08 UTC 2009

On 11/18/2009 11:34 AM, John Dennis wrote:
> I couldn't find this in the guidelines and I'm looking for clarification.
> When a package generates data as a consequence of it's runtime operation
> should the package data also be removed along with the package files
> when the package is uninstalled (i.e. rpm -e)?
> Issues:
> * It may be a user expectation that removing a package removes all the
> files associated with the package even if they are not package files
> (listed in %files). Most people remove packages because they don't want
> or need the package any more and don't want cruft left behind, they want
> a clean uninstall which recovers the maximum disk space possible without
> "orphans"
> * Generated data may have value after the package is removed, for some
> users it might be an unpleasant experience to discover after removing a
> package the data files were wiped out too.
> * It's not possible to query the user at uninstall time as to the
> disposition of data files because the uninstall (like install's) may be
> scripted.
> My inclination is the packaging guidelines should encourage the removal
> of data files generated by the package when the package is removed.

Packages, in general, should not create data outside of what's managed 
by %files.  A crutch that could be beneficial here is prudent use of

-- Rex

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