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Re: New MIME release



Hi,

On Thu, Jul 25, 2002 at 09:55:13AM +0100, Thomas Leonard wrote:
> 
> - After installing, the update-mime-database command is run, which
>   validates the data and caches it in a more convenient form.

I've got a few comments on this.

The first one is not specifically about the new program, and is actually
also something which (most likely) was an issue in previous versions already
now that I think of it.
The shared-mime-info package installs a file into /usr/share/mime [1] which
may be modified by the user. This would make it kind of a configuration
file, and that means it should go somewhere in /etc according to the FHS.
(which at least all Linux distributions are assumed to follow if they want
to be LSB compliant, and the background section of the FHS talks about BSD
involvement as well)
We may sort of get away with this by specifying that the user, or rather the
system administrator if he's not installing into ~/.mime, shouldn't modify
this file but edit an Override.xml file in /usr/local/share/mime.
Or we could add /etc/mime into the list of paths.

Then there is another FHS problem, which is introduced by the latest
version.
Running the update-mime-database command means building a number of
generated files. These too are put into /usr/share/mime (same footnote
applies).
They should be underneath /var/lib instead. The same may be true for the
files generated in /usr/local/share (although this may be open for
interpretation). The ones in ~/.mime obviously shouldn't.
This does complicate the program however. Even disregarding the problems
with /usr/local/share/mime (you'd have to start merging directories if
these are to be generated in /var/lib too) and the first comment (about
/etc/mime), update-mime-database has to deal differently with the system
wide or the user specific generated info. The former has to be put in a
directory different than the one it is generated from, the latter doesn't.

Next, I haven't seen any indication as to which file takes precedence when
two or more in the same directory provide the same information, only for
when they are in different directories or if one of them is Override.xml.

And one more thing: from a quick look the spec says that shared mime-info
aware apps must run update-mime-database, but doesn't require any app to
explicitly depend on either the program or the SMI database. I think it
should.


Regards,

Filip

[1] Assuming the user has asked to install it in /usr/share; this would most
    likely be because he's using a prepackaged version.

-- 
"Much blood has been spilled as a result of arguments about how many buttons
 a mouse ought to have. Naive users prefer one (it is hard to push te wrong
 button if there is only one), but sophisticated ones like the power of
 multiple buttons to do fancy things."
	-- Andrew S. Tanenbaum, `Structured Computer Organization'

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