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Request for Policy Clarification



In the past I have requested some clarification and suggested what I
thought was reasonable for an EPEL policy governing which packages
were allowed into EPEL. I understand my vision of this policy is more
strict than the EPEL community finds agreeable so this time I am only
asking that the EPEL community clarify its own policy and advertise
that on its wiki so users of EPEL can understand what the policy
actually is.

Here are some examples of why I am perpetually confused about it.

>From the main wiki page:

"EPEL packages are usually based on their Fedora counterparts and will
never conflict with or replace packages in the base Enterprise Linux
distributions."

>From the EPEL FAQ:

"EPEL is purely a complementary add-on repository and does not replace
packages in RHEL or layered products."

"EPEL will not ship a package that is in the RHEL Advanced platform set."

>From the Guidelines and Policies wiki page:

"Thus packages from EPEL should never replace packages from the target
base distribution - including those on the base distribution as well
as layered products; kernel-modules further are not allowed, as they
can disturb the base kernel easily."

"EPEL packages must never conflict with packages in RHEL Base
(Including Advanced Platform). EPEL packages can conflict with
packages in other RHEL channels."

What users of RHEL in particular need to know is which channels in
terms they can understand are assured to be conflict free and which
aren't. The above examples of the policy descriptions currently
provided by EPEL aren't consistent even at an abstract level.

Can we just get this defined in a way that can be understood by users?
Even in the absence of any policy change?

I'd also like to request a bit more formal timeline of what a user can
expect to happen after reporting a package that is in EPEL that
shouldn't be. In my experience many EPEL maintainers respond quickly
to such reports but I've seen others sit in BZ for more that a month
before someone else takes action on it. Since removing existing
packages in EPEL, especially ones that appear newer than their RHEL
counterparts, can be dangerous to RHEL users I think removal actions
should happen very quickly to minimize the danger.

Thanks,
John


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