March 24, 2010
Tom asked Toshio and me to look into how to implement something like the kopers proposal that Jesse wrote up a while back. Toshio and I have been doing a bunch of research on it and have come up a bunch of issues and some questions about it. The most pressing question is this:
– If kopers/fedora ppas make creating(and hosting) new/different variants of pkgs easier, are we just encouraging a dependency/provides explosion of incompatibility and, ultimately, pain in debugging. OR are we just facilitating what is already happening now and lifting user frustration?
In short, does providing the technology to do what a koper is make our lives better or worse?
Let me give some examples of better:
– easier hosting of the 5 pkgs with interdependent build processes for any given use
– easier updating of repos and searching of them
– advancing the tooling in parts of our build infrastructure (mock and createrepo in particular)
Some examples of worse:
– now instead of an average user having 3-5 repos enabled (fedora, updates, rpmfusion, adobe-flash) they have a lot more
– polluting the search namespace for google and others to confuse people looking for ‘python-frazzlebutt’.
– confusing an average user as to what is a Fedora Project pkg and what is just something provided from a fedora domain by some random user.
– making every developer debugging a problem have to ask the: what pkgs do you have installed and can you give me full details of where you got them from. (to be fair, yum now records the repo a package was installed from so this information is not difficult to come by)
At the moment I’m inclined to believe that folks are making their own pkgs and repos already and we have a smaller scale of the ‘cons’. So that by making it easier we will make a larger number of them but it’s not altogether new. And I know that enhancing some of the tools will be helpful, if only to the folks using them to build local repos of their own stuff.
Anyone have any thoughts on ths subject?
Update: Toshio was kind enough to point out this blog post from fedora’s very own Adam Williamson before he came to fedora.