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Re: Improve the way rpm decides what is newer

On Tue, 24 Nov 2009 14:59:20 -0500, Przemek wrote:

> Essentially, these proposals can be seen as attempts to introduce a 
> 2-dimensional ordering: on one hand, classifying packages by their 
> version number, and on the other hand by a distribution. Mathematically 
> this is impossible---it's a well-known mathematical fact that there's no 
> consistent ordering relation in a complex plane. Indeed, people came up 
> with use cases for both version number being more important and less 
> important than the distribution number.

If you see it like that, ordering in the 1st dimension is a problem already,
because it's not always possible to map upstream versions into RPM versions
without violating a strict ordering relation. Fedora's versioning guidelines
avoid many pitfalls, but odd cases remain -- and situations when you want
to downgrade without creating a fake package version.

> I agree that this is a 'process' issue---packages should be ordered 
> simply by the underlying software version and release, and there should 
> be a distribution release QA step that simply makes sure that all 
> released packages from distro N+1 are newer than latest updates in distro N

Especially during freeze of the development dist that's to be released
as N+1. That's the time when packagers make N and N-1 move ahead of N+1
because freeze procedures. If N+1 doesn't get the same package updates
*and* upgrades as the older dists [because of "issues"], it simply isn't
ready to be released. 

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