[RFC/P] Port System Re-Engineering

Vivek Khera vivek at khera.org
Mon Dec 3 12:27:00 PST 2007

On Dec 2, 2007, at 5:01 AM, Aryeh M. Friedman wrote:

> 1. What is more important to your personal use of FreeBSD (the ports
> system, the underlaying OS, some other aspect)?

The core OS.  Ports is icing on the cake.

> 2. How frequently do you interact with the ports systems and what is
> the most common interaction you have with it?

nearly daily (less so, now that I've hired someone to do that for me :-)

> 3. What is the single best aspect of the current system?

ease of installation.

> 4. What is the single worst aspect of the current system?

upgrading individual ports

tracking which dependencies came from a given port, or which were  
inherited from a dependency.

> 5. If you where a new FreeBSD user how would your answers above
> change?   If you where brand new to UNIX how whould they change?
Can't answer that.

> 6. Assuming that there was no additional work on your behalf would you
> use a new system if it corrected your answer to number 4?

Yes, if you can improve the upgrade process, I'd use your tool.  None  
of the current systems work like I'd want... either they rebuild/ 
reinstall everything or they get confused when dependencies change on  
a given port between upgrades.

> 7. Same as question 6 but for your answer on question 3?
If it broke something I wouldn't use it.

> 8. How long have you used FreeBSD and/or UNIX in general?

Unix since 1986-ish (original BSD even...)
FreeBSD since version 3.3.

> 9.  That is your primary use(s) for your FreeBSD machine(s) (name  
> upto 3)?

Web servers
Email servers
DNS servers

> 10. Assuming there is no functional difference what is your preferred
> installation method for 3rd party software?

The "native" package management system for whatever OS is the base.   
Anything else is fighting an uphill battle.

> 11. On a scale from 1 to 10 (10 being the best) please rate the
> importance of the following aspects of the ports system?
>       a. User Interface
>       b. Consistency of behaviors and interactions
>       c. Accuracy in dependant port installations
>       d. Internal record keeping
>       e. Granularity's of the port management system
> 12. Please rate your personal technical skill level?

highly technical.

Vivek Khera, Ph.D.                Khera Communications, Inc.
Internet: khera at kciLink.com       Rockville, MD  +1-301-869-4449 x806

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