Gentoo Archives: gentoo-dev

From: Jonas Bernoulli <jonas@×××××××××.cc>
To: gentoo-dev@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-dev] new portage categories
Date: Mon, 04 Feb 2008 17:35:11
1 Hello
3 Recently I started to exclude parts of the portage tree for various
4 reasons. One of them is that I play with the thought of creating my
5 own minidistro/livecd based on Gentoo. So keep in mind that I don't
6 think that it is in general useful to trim the portage tree to the
7 extend that I have.
9 One of the obvious things one might start out with is to exclude kde
10 when one prefers gnome or vice versa. I extended this to exclude
11 packages within on category that fulfill the same purpose. E.g. I use
12 app-admin/metalog so it doesn't make much sense to include all the
13 other loggers. Since the decision for metalog at the time was not
14 substantiated at the time a also made a note basically saying "is
15 metalog really the best? these are the alternatives". Once I have the
16 time I might include the other loggers again and evaluate them.
18 But to make the list of loggers I basically had to read through the
19 descriptions of all packages in app-admin to sort out all loggers (I
20 could have searched but I wanted to make sure I don't miss anything).
21 Since I have not done this for loggers only this was/is a lot of work
22 and I therefor asked myself why are there no categories like app-log
23 or app-cron.
25 So I ask you: why are there no such categories? Of course I can
26 imagine a few reasons myself for not having more categories:
28 (1) a category must in general include n packages
29 (2) more categories are evil, once we start creating new once there is no end
30 (3) moving packages in the tree is bad, things break
31 (4) who does all the work
32 (5) subcategories would be better, but to implement this...
33 ....
35 Please point me to any discussions on this subject. Keep in mind I am
36 not demanding new categories, I am not even asking for them to be
37 created. I simply would like to know why there aren't more. And if you
38 developers are also interested in more categories I would love to make
39 some suggestions and help with looking through the tree to see which
40 packages would have to be moved.
42 Reasons why more categories might be usefull:
44 (1) Easier to find new packages
46 One great benefit of going through the tree to exclude packages was
47 for me that I came across many great packages I did not know about.
48 The likeliness of this would be increased e.g. for the category
49 app-admin, if I did not have to read the DESCRIPTION of ~8 loggers
50 even though I already have selected one and currently am not at all
51 interested in evaluating the alternatives. In addition there are ~14
52 logfile analysers of some sort in app-admin ~4 logfile rotators ~2
53 other log related packages. And some more can probably be found in
54 app-misc, x11-apps and x11-misc. So all in all at least ~30 packages
55 that have to do with logging, why not create app-log?
57 (2) Easier to find alternatives to a package
59 Need a logger? See what is in app-log!
61 (3) Makes it less likely that similar packages end up in different categories
63 Just an example app-admin/pwcrypt DESCRIPTION="An improved version of
64 cli-crypt (encrypts data sent to it from the cli) but cli-crypt is in
65 app-crypt"
67 By the way why is there app-crypt but not app-log?
69 There are other things I noticed when weeding through the tree. E.g.
70 some DESCRIPTIONs start with a capitalized letter others don't. Some
71 end with a period, others don't. Some for now apparent reason start
72 with "foo is an application to do bar" instead of "do bar".
74 I understand that it is not very interesting for any developer to fix
75 such minor errors, and I am not asking anyone to do something about
76 it. But I would like to know if there is any change that new
77 categories are created if I or others collect lists of packages that
78 could be moved to new categories. And yes I understand that the work
79 doesn't end here and would possibly also help finding packages whose
80 dependencies would have to be modified.
82 For me also this is not exactly fun. But since I do this kind of work
83 for my own personal benefit at the moment I might as well do it in a
84 way that benefits others as well.
86 -- Jonas
87 --
88 gentoo-dev@l.g.o mailing list


Subject Author
Re: [gentoo-dev] new portage categories Donnie Berkholz <dberkholz@g.o>