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Fedora Developers Are Looking At Better Managing Retired Packages

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  • #11
    Originally posted by antnythr View Post

    I actually think this touches on a larger issue that I've always wondered if it could be handled differently. Almost every distribution maintains their own copies of every package. It's a massive duplication of effort, time, and resources. In my head I can think of a ton of reasons why people will say it couldn't be done, but I think that a single massive package repository that all distributions could pull from would be great.
    Realistically, you end up with something like a container or flatpak if you truly want to be cross distribution

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    • #12
      Originally posted by antnythr View Post
      but I think that a single massive package repository that all distributions could pull from would be great.
      Make that proposal to all the major distros, and if all agree that would be a good thing, go build it.

      As others have said, the current approach (which is loved/hated by many) is flatpak or snap, but there have been previous attempts long before Linux was a thing (it was about a universal installer for all the Unix platforms at the time). A primary failure was that each os variant has their own way to represent dependencies, or invoke commands, or have library API determinations (different distros ship different level of required libraries). For a generalized solution the only way a universal package repo likely works will be the freebsd or gentoo approach, you download the source and compile it.

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      • #13
        Huh??? Then WTF is this?

        fedora-obsolete-packages.noarch : A package to obsolete retired packages

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        • #14
          Originally posted by MadeUpName View Post
          Huh??? Then WTF is this?

          fedora-obsolete-packages.noarch : A package to obsolete retired packages
          Obsoleted ! = retired. The proposal is to do the same for retired

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          • #15
            Originally posted by antnythr View Post
            I actually think this touches on a larger issue that I've always wondered if it could be handled differently. Almost every distribution maintains their own copies of every package. It's a massive duplication of effort, time, and resources. In my head I can think of a ton of reasons why people will say it couldn't be done, but I think that a single massive package repository that all distributions could pull from would be great.
            I guess those considerations were part of the motivation for Flatpak and Snap, but they still have disadvantages compared to the traditional packaging structures, even for simple GUI applications.

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            • #16
              Originally posted by antnythr View Post

              I actually think this touches on a larger issue that I've always wondered if it could be handled differently. Almost every distribution maintains their own copies of every package. It's a massive duplication of effort, time, and resources. In my head I can think of a ton of reasons why people will say it couldn't be done, but I think that a single massive package repository that all distributions could pull from would be great.
              I think that's called Debian, and everyone who wants to use it already does.

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              • #17
                Originally posted by antnythr View Post

                I actually think this touches on a larger issue that I've always wondered if it could be handled differently. Almost every distribution maintains their own copies of every package. It's a massive duplication of effort, time, and resources. In my head I can think of a ton of reasons why people will say it couldn't be done, but I think that a single massive package repository that all distributions could pull from would be great.
                But that isn't so easy since packages have dependencies. And the dependencies on Fedora isn't the same as on Debian because of different package names, release cycles, ...

                Some of the patches relates to switching of compiler toolchain - something that is independent decisions for different distributions.

                And in some situations, the distributions requires the applications to use different paths, or run with different privileges, ...

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                • #18
                  I quickly read through the Fedora Wiki on this topic. The most obnoxious feature to me was removing a package from a user's system just because nobody else cares about it.

                  I can see isolating or locking out a package that breaks due to a certain upgrade. When that happens, WARN THE USER in a nice big message box that they cannot miss. Then the user can decide what to do about it. Sometimes a user has to face up to the fact they are using ancient code that now breaks stuff, or is broken by new stuff.

                  The next question that comes to mind: In a centrally administered Linux environment (user does not have 'root' access), what happens if the local user installed something on the system in their 'home' directories? Would an upgrade wipe that out? What if the upgrade process was "unattended" and nobody knew that user's locally installed package was wiped out?

                  IMHO Fedora has an interesting idea here, but it also opens some interesting cans of worms.

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                  • #19
                    Originally posted by NotMine999 View Post
                    I quickly read through the Fedora Wiki on this topic. The most obnoxious feature to me was removing a package from a user's system just because nobody else cares about it.

                    I can see isolating or locking out a package that breaks due to a certain upgrade. When that happens, WARN THE USER in a nice big message box that they cannot miss. Then the user can decide what to do about it. Sometimes a user has to face up to the fact they are using ancient code that now breaks stuff, or is broken by new stuff.

                    The next question that comes to mind: In a centrally administered Linux environment (user does not have 'root' access), what happens if the local user installed something on the system in their 'home' directories? Would an upgrade wipe that out? What if the upgrade process was "unattended" and nobody knew that user's locally installed package was wiped out?

                    IMHO Fedora has an interesting idea here, but it also opens some interesting cans of worms.
                    Yes, I often keep running unsupported applications because there are no good alternatives. There might be a bug or two showing up from age, but I can live with that for a normal application. It's networked applications I absolutely don't want to survive after no longer being maintained because of the potential security issues.

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