Gentoo Archives: gentoo-dev

From: Daniel Robbins <drobbins@g.o>
To: gentoo-dev@g.o
Subject: Re: [gentoo-dev] package.mask
Date: Sat, 14 Apr 2001 10:20:10
In Reply to: Re: [gentoo-dev] package.mask by (Achim Gottinger)
1 On Sat, Apr 14, 2001 at 04:54:36PM +0200, Achim Gottinger wrote:
3 > Daniel, I have a question, why is it easier to add a new file (package.mask)
4 > that excludes packages instead of using the already existing packages file
5 > for masquerading (oposite of package.mask)?
7 Good question... and here's a (hopefully) good answer. Consider what will
8 happen when we have 20 different system-profiles on portage, and you add one
9 experimental package to CVS. You could either add 20 lines to
10 /usr/portage/profiles/[x]/packages, or add a single exclusion line to
11 /usr/portage/profiles/package.mask. Remember that package.mask is shared by
12 *every* profile, while the packages file is profile-specific. package.mask is
13 specifically designed so that developers can exclude experimental ebuilds by
14 adding one line to one file -- ebuilds that are not stable shouldn't be used
15 under *any* profile. Now, CVS committers only need to modify a single file to
16 "mask out" the broken ebuilds rather than carefully tweak every existing
17 profile. This will allow for us to have certain people who are just "profile
18 maintainers" -- maintaining a specific directory in /usr/portage/profiles --
19 but don't actually need to be up-to-date on which ebuilds are broken and which
20 work this week or the next. That's the job of the ebuild maintainers, who keep
21 /usr/portage/profiles/package.mask up-to-date to protect the profile
22 maintainers and end-users.
24 Lots of _underlines_ and *stars* around key words in the next paragraph just to
25 make it easier to read....
27 The purpose of the packages file is to describe the _minimal_ ebuilds that
28 should be installed under a *specific* profile, while package.mask describes
29 the files that should _not_ be installed under *any* profile. Note that if a
30 package is _not_ listed in packages, it *can* still be merged by the user. So,
31 the packages file is _not_ supposed to prevent merging of not-listed packages,
32 but rather require merging of packages (technically, satisfaction of
33 dependencies) that *are* listed. For example, if you have a "minimal" profile,
34 the packages file may only have 15 entries, but the user will still be able to
35 merge GNOME if they choose to do so.
37 The purpose of this design philosophy is to help ensure a working system without
38 putting unnecessary restraints on the user. Apologies for not explaining this
39 earlier; I thought you understood the concept behind the packages file. In any
40 case, I hope you like the design -- personally, I think it's a good approach.
42 While I still need to figure out how to resolve conflicts between package lines
43 and the DEPEND/RDEPEND strings, this does not change the fact that the packages
44 file was always intended (by me, at least) to list minimal-compliance
45 requirements (dependencies) for a specific profile, rather than an exhaustive
46 list of every possible package that is allowed to be installed like
47 did. That's the concept behind a system profile -- to
48 identify a subset of the packages on CVS that constitute a complete system.
50 Best Regards,
52 --
53 Daniel Robbins <drobbins@g.o>
54 President/CEO
55 Gentoo Technologies, Inc.


Subject Author
Re: [gentoo-dev] package.mask (Achim Gottinger)