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Re: [Health-dev] OT: gnuhealth distro packaging (was: Should distributio

From: Emilien Klein
Subject: Re: [Health-dev] OT: gnuhealth distro packaging (was: Should distribution packaging solve the installation/configuration issues our users are having?)
Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 13:36:04 +0100

2015-02-12 12:44 GMT+01:00 Mathias Behrle <address@hidden>:
* Axel Braun: " Re: [Health-dev] Should distribution packaging solve the
  installation/configuration issues our users are having?" (Wed, 11 Feb 2015
  10:41:43 +0100):

> OpenBuildService is OpenSource and free to use. It builds Debian and Ubuntu
> as well (also on the reference server,, and by this can
> use as a common repository.

Axel just asked me per PM, if and why I wouldn't use OBS for Debian gnuhealth
packages and I am also answering here to share with the list.

My points in primarily not using OBS in descending order:

- For the build of Debian packages I am using the Debian toolchain, whenever it
  is not possible to use the Debian infrastructure itself. This gives me the
  background of a well established and proven build system with extended sanity
- I don't know OBS, therefore following remarks may be FUD:
  - The one or two times I wanted to try it was very unresponsive, I
    saved my time in not trying further.
  - I doubt, that the infrastructure as built on is
    possible to do on OBS.
  - I doubt, that OBS does the sanity testings (lintian, piuparts), which are
    part of the quality process on
  - Finally I just trust more in Debian native tools than a third party build

I completely agree with Mathias' points.
OpenSuse's Open Build Service *can* create Debian packages that will install and provide whatever code/functionality you want, but none of the QA/conventions that have made Debian so robust and stable over the last 20+ years are enforced. Just to give an example, there are automated bug reports that are created when the package is automatically rebuilt on all the platforms that Debian supports (and those are roughly said the largest number that any Linux distro supports), which will let you know if your package, or any of its dependencies, have any problems.
When OBS was introduced at FOSDEM (was it in 2012?), I attended the original introduction talk, and asked if the packages built would enforce/use Debian's QA. Answer was just No.

Plus, the whole point of making a *Debian* package is to be able to install it with a simple `apt-get install`, on Debian or *any* of its numerous distributions. (and yes Mathias, this is also why I'm not super excited about building the package inside, which is rougly a software-specific PPA (in the Ubuntu world) which still requires you to play with your /etc/apt/sources.list.

Adding back in the debian-med list to have all interested parties up to date. Will do so as well with my answer on the other email chain.

P.S.: to outsiders, it might seem we are fighting on this topic, but this is a true example of why Free/Open Source Software is better: we discuss our differences in point of view in the open.

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