On Thursday 21 October 2004 00:02, andrea ferraris wrote:
> The first one is simple: in a litle gentoo system that I'm
> managing for a year now with authomatic nightly updates,
> I had to update almost manually about a hundred of
> configuration files. The system (gentoo) is well designed,
> so, if I didn't update, all works because the original
> configuration files stay in place, but for the better and
> also only for the good, the thing to do is to use etc-update
> to update such configuration files. The problem is that such
> process is really time consuming and error prone, so it's
> not very good.
You might want to try dispatch-conf. It is superior to etc-update in many
aspects, and it comes with gentoolkit. Further there is normally no need
to update every night. While there is no problem with it, it will
increase the maintenance load unnecessarilly.
> The second thing is the binary choice. In Gentoo is more
> difficult than it should be (at least from my point ov view),
> it is that the system gives the choice of binary updates only,
> but it's really difficult to find only binary packages and
> also if one can find them it's impossible to find only
> modified files in a package and to update only those and also
> to download only diffs and only binaries diffs. I think that
> also these things could be achieved studying the Conary
The thing is that portage's binary packages are far from perfect when
compared for example with rpm's. The problem is caused by the fact that
two seemingly similar binary packages can be different to the extend that
one will work on your system and the other not. As gentoo is mainly a
source distribution the effort required to make binaries "better" is
probably too big. Even then all kinds of binary problems are unavoidable
and the main cause of releases in all binary distributions, even debian.
With source one can mix and match, with binary releases one must ensure
that all dependencies are completely compatible with the versions that
existed when the package was built.
> Sorry for the length of the message and for the absence
> of code, practical idea or implementations.
> I'm sorry, but I can't.
On the point of not having a central tree. That is basically a support
nightmare waiting to happen. In gentoo we have allready problems with
supporting users that make improper local modifications or use some
packages from breakmygentoo.net (allthough they seem to have adopted a
minimum level of quality too). The problem is that as systems get more
and more dissimilar, problems get harder and harder to reproduce. One can
also not as a volunteer set up a configuration that is similar to a user
just for fixing one bug.
As for keeping local changes, that is certainly possible now with gentoo.
It is fairly easy to set up, allthough not officially supported or
documented. The concept of overlays is well supported, and probably most
developers use it for a few of their own packages. Supporting an
organizational tree is fairly easy too, all required is some hard disk
space and an rsync server.
Paul de Vrieze