DragonFly users List (threaded) for 2008-12
My personal pkgsrc FAQ
Because I happen to be in the position where my person can be associated
with pkgsrc, there are lot of questions asked from me whether and how
situation with packages can and/or should be improved etc. I'll try to
answer most of questions in this mail (just my personal FAQ) and to start
Q: Pkgsrc sucks, why we don't use <some random> package management system?
A: There is no real alternatives. Unless someone finds 10+ people working
on our own packaging system (packages), there is no point to have "our
own" system. And unless someone finds other packaging system with focus
on portability and with reasonably big number of packages, there is no
point to use something else either.
Q: But I'm willing to help to port <some random> package management system
A: You can do whatever you want with your free time, but unless you have
something done which can be really used, don't expect anyone in the
project (and especially me ;) help you.
Q: Can you do this and/or that (pkgsrc related task)?
A: In general no. I just happen to be a pkgsrc commiter. I do regular bulk
builds and try to take care that pkgsrc doesn't suck _too_ much in
DragonFly, but that is pretty much all. It is already more than I'd
like to do in this area.
Q: Can you fix <some random> package?
A: You can try to poke me, but don't expect it to be too successful. If I
think that it can be useful for me, then yes, but anyway try to fix it
yourself and submit the patches to NetBSD GNATS.
Q: You do bulk builds, can you make packages from these available?
A: No. These builds are actually irregular, are often incompatible with
each other (I play with defaults sometimes) etc. These builds serve
single purpose - to discover before release that at least most of
pkgsrc builds in DragonFly. I don't use these packages in any of my
machines either (except testing machine in which /usr/pkg is removed
sometimes three times in a day ;).
Q: But can you take care of such builds?
A: No, I haven't time for that.
Q: But if I provide hardware/scripts/etc for that?
A: No, I haven't time for that.
Q: But what can be done to improve the current state?
A: That's the right question ...
In short we can improve the quality of packages and this is the area where
everyone can help with bugreports. Just report bugs and problems (with
fixes, please ;) to the NetBSD GNATS. I can take care of these reports,
but I don't go to fix software which I don't use unless there is a
trivial fix. This should help everyone.
And there are binary packages ... we have them now, right? No, these are
not very usable IMHO for now. These are too irregular for real use, use
wrong options for me etc.
But this situation can be improved? Yes, someone needs to be found who is
willing to take care of official _regular_ binary builds. Daily builds
from stable pkgsrc branch etc. These random builds we have at the moment
don't help much. There is no clear update path from these etc.
There have been several persons jumped in in the past with "hey, I'll do
that bulk stuff", but disappearing after that. What we need is person
taking care of _regular_ bulk builds in long term so that security fixes
can be applied by users in timely manner etc. So, that users can rely on
If there will be person who is willing to invest his time into maintaining
builds, we have more to discuss (for example default options for our
official builds etc), but so far there is no point ...