Heads up: Noarch Subpackages

Matthew Woehlke mw_triad at users.sourceforge.net
Fri Feb 13 17:02:16 UTC 2009

Joe Orton wrote:
> On Thu, Feb 12, 2009 at 10:28:45AM -0600, Matthew Woehlke wrote:
>> Joe Orton wrote:
>>> I take it from the wiki page, that we should hold of on using this too  
>>> aggressively until some distro-wide guidelines are produced?
>>> e.g. for -devel packages given that 99% of the content is generally  
>>> noarch-able there would be a lot of scope for splitting those up.
>> ...except for the important symlinks-to-versioned-.so's?
> Right, the symlink and e.g. a pkg-config file are typically the 1% which 
> isn't noarch-able.
>> Doesn't that kind of break things for -devel unless you break it into 
>> -devel-libs and -devel-headers (eek :-( )?
> Yup, you'd have to do something like that.  It's not obviously an "eek" 
> to me; it's a trade-off.

Um. Maybe if you name things -devel (arch) which depends on 
-devel-common (noarch). But that's still another package I have to 
install for just about every -devel :-(.

For some numbers, I have 1296 installed packages, of which 172 are 
-devel... so you're talking probably a 10% increase in the number of 
installed packages (even if the actual disk usage doesn't change 
appreciably) if most -devel packages end up being split. Maybe not 
horrible, but that's still a fair number of additional packages.

I'm not convinced that's a good idea, but I suppose it's up to the 
maintainers. (I do like the idea of e.g. -doc, though.) Like you say, 
it's a trade-off.

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