Data files and ports

Paul Schmehl pschmehl_lists at
Fri Jun 11 15:09:45 UTC 2010

--On Friday, June 11, 2010 10:58:50 -0300 Jesse Smith <jessefrgsmith at> 

> I'm trying to teach myself how to build a FreeBSD port and, with a lot
> of help from the manual, it's going well. I have a question though
> concerning policy/style.
> I'm trying to port a program which is distributed in two separate
> packages from the upstream project. One package contains the executable
> program and the other contains data files. The Data package rarely
> changes. The idea being packaging them together would use up a lot of
> extra bandwidth.
> Which brings me to the question: Since the executable relies on the data
> files being in place before it's run, how should I handle that in the
> port? Should I just get the executable to install and let the user
> manually get the data files? Should I create a second port for the data
> package? Or should I find some way of making the executable's makefile
> download and unpack the data package?
> My instinct is to create a separate port for the Data package and list
> it as a dependency for the Executable port. I'd appreciate some
> guidance.

I think your instinct is correct.

You *could* put logic into the Makefile of a single port to verify that the 
data files are the most recent ones, but having a second port makes a great 
deal more sense to me, especially since the executables will be updating on a 
more frequent basis than the data files.  Just make the data file port a 
RUN_DEPENDS of the executable port.

Paul Schmehl, Senior Infosec Analyst
As if it wasn't already obvious, my opinions
are my own and not those of my employer.
"It is as useless to argue with those who have
renounced the use of reason as to administer
medication to the dead." Thomas Jefferson

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