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Re: Fedora 11 wireless-tools yum erase?

On 06/22/2009 10:14 AM, Dan Williams wrote:
> It's also a question of maintainability.  Sure, we could split up tons
> of packages and add code to all the tools to check runtime-availability
> of every tool they might use.  But that's just insane, and increases the
> maintenance burden tremendously.

This is roughly what Gentoo does, right?  Of course, Gentoo has the
'luxury' of re-compiling.  But that just gets at, I think, that vanilla
c isn't flexible enough to handle this dynamically.  A Python app could
do it pretty easily, IIRC.  In that case, a Python implementation of a
thing could conceivably compete for mindshare against the c version,
given the inherent trade-offs.

One could imagine Feature: and Feature-Requires: tags in a spec that
could be used to generate more complex dependency trees and
automatically generate the proper set of package-foo.rpm files.
Integrating this with yum and/or graphical package managers would
certainly be a ton of work.

But to get to the thematic question, probably nobody (for large values
of nobody) cares if any given package has a 40KB dependency.  It's when
you have a thousand packages that have a thousand unneeded dependencies,
you increase the cost (time, disk, memory, cpu, bandwidth, electricity,
complexity) to install, update, etc. and you wind up excluding very
small computing devices in some cases.

I agree that making humans manage this would approach insanity.  But
does that necessarily preclude allowing computers to handle it?


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