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Re: Package groups vs "metapackages"



On Thu, 2009-08-13 at 14:38 -0700, Adam Williamson wrote:
> On Thu, 2009-08-13 at 12:53 -0700, Bryan O'Sullivan wrote:
> > I've been working recently on bringing Fedora up to snuff as a
> > platform to build Haskell software on:
> > 
> > https://fedoraproject.org/wiki/SIGs/Haskell#Haskell_Platform_support
> > 
> > In my ideal world, it would be possible to install all of the
> > necessities for decent Haskell development via a single short command
> > line. I can see two ways to do this:
> >       * Create a "haskell-devel" (or something) package that simply
> >         depends on all of the Haskell Platform's component packages.
> >         This would have the nice property of being versioned, just as
> >         the Haskell Platform itself is.
> >       * Create a "Haskell Development" group in comps. This is unknown
> >         territory to me: I don't know if it's a good idea, how it
> >         would work, how I'd edit it to add new dependencies when the
> >         Haskell Platform gets updates, or ... well, anything.
> > What's the collective wisdom about the best approach for doing this?
> 
> I wondered about this too when I joined, and several people told me
> metapackages are generally discouraged in favour of package groups. I
> don't know the rationale behind that decision, but that's what I was
> told.

I prefer comps groups.  Here are the benefits of each approach as I see
it:

Comps Groups
  * visible through anaconda
  * configurable between products
  * allows for mandatory/default/optional/conditional packages
  * "cleaner" - i.e. comps groups were meant for this purpose
    whereas metapackages are more of a kludge

Metapackages
  * allow for versioned package listings

Cheers
-- Dennis

p.s. If you decide to create a metapackage, don't name it *-devel.
Packages with those names are assumed to contain development libraries
and are automatically marked as multilib.


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