alternative options for ports

Michael Nottebrock michaelnottebrock at
Sat Oct 16 04:31:21 PDT 2004

On Saturday 16 October 2004 03:50, Erik Trulsson wrote:

> I don't know what Debian does or does not do, but I don't need to know
> that to tell you again that adding a million slave-ports is not
> realistic and that anybody who seriously suggests that must be out of
> his or her mind. (Yes, I did mean "a million extra slave-ports"
> literally, and was not employing hyperbole.)

I have no idea how you're arriving at the number of a million slave ports. I 
have no idea how you could think I was suggesting adding a million slave 
ports (however one would achieve that, I have no idea) either.

> (Hint: Currently there on the order of 10000 ports. Adding a million
> extra ports would increase the size of the ports collection
> hundredfold, and the package building would probably not be able to
> finish until it is time to start over again for the next release.
> That million slave-ports is just what would be needed for
> multimedia/mplayer.

That's utter nonsense. The easiest way of providing a good package for a port 
is: Turn as many optional features/build-switches on by default. In some 
cases, turning something on isn't desirable because it adds too many 
dependencies to a package which people would not usually want. For _those_ 
cases, it is a good idea to investigate if slave ports can be made so the 
features are available to package users immediately. If that's not possible, 
tough luck - at least for the moment, because a good port maintainer would 
then go and try to nudge upstream development into making the application 
modular enough to make it possible in the future.

> I view the building from source as the primary purpose of the ports
> system, with the creation of binary packages as just a nice bonus.

With all due respect for your view, but that's just not true.

   ,_,   | Michael Nottebrock               | lofi at
 (/^ ^\) | FreeBSD - The Power to Serve     |
   \u/   | K Desktop Environment on FreeBSD |
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