autoamtic plists (was: Re: cvs commit: ports/audio/linux-openal

Jean-Yves Lefort jylefort at
Fri Dec 2 19:04:37 GMT 2005

On Fri, 02 Dec 2005 18:06:08 +0100
Alexander Leidinger <Alexander at> wrote:

> >> >> - why do you use different ways of specifying the paths in DESCR
> >> >>    and MD5_FILE?
> >> >> - why do you specify DESCR at all?
> >> >
> >> > The idea is to use the FreeBSD native port's pkg-descr.
> >>
> >> I don't think this is good. I think the descr should mention that the ports
> >> provide the linux versions of the port.
> >
> > It's obvious from the package name and comment. But once again, people
> > are free to bypass this helper if they don't like it.
> It may be obvious for us, but not obvious for others. I like it to be
> unambiguos. Let's do it the other way around (POLA): If someone want's to
> override it, he can set it to the FreeBSD port description in the port
> itself.

Shrug. Ok.

> >> automatic plist generator to write their own plists. It also allows to look
> >> up the contents of the port without a need to install it. And we're able to
> >> answer questions like "which port installs file X". So we get the good
> >> features of both worlds, don't you think?
> >
> > I've added new-plist and NO_AUTOMATIC_PLIST for auto plist haters.
> This doesn't address the "lookup" and "will-be-installed-by" parts above (ok,
> they are the same, but...). These are major topics. You can read on ports@
> from this week about someone who tries to write an application which does
> something like this but has problems because of the automatic plists. Having
> the static plists (auto-generated or by hand) in the tree, also helps in
> support requests, since someone with experience just can tell "install port
> X" to a newbie, even if he doesn't know anything about the port in question
> himself.
> So there's demand, and we mostly can satisfy it, but when we go the "all
> automatic" way, we can't anymore.
> I can understand that with a really good automatic mechanism, there will be
> less errors in the plist (specially some like those I produced in the last
> two weeks), but we can have the good part of this mechanism and the good
> part of plists in the tree just with the "new-plist" target.
> Are there any technical arguments which makes it mandatory to use your
> version of install-time generated plists instead of my proposal to commit
> the automatically generated plist?

We have already discussed this:

Jean-Yves Lefort

jylefort at
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