NOT_FOR_ARCHS considered harmful [was: with the cvs history? trying to help INDEX builds.]

Matthew Seaman m.seaman at
Sun Jan 22 10:41:12 UTC 2012

On 21/01/2012 20:46, Mark Linimon wrote:
> tl;dr: I want to switch the default assumption we're making.
> IMHO when new ports come into the tree, we should make our default
> assumption that we will try to build them on amd64 and i386.  For cases
> that this does not hold, we consider this Bad and committer-must-fix.
> For the tier-2s, we shift the default assumption to "only set it to
> buildable once it has been shown to be so".  So, the burden of proof
> shifts the other way: to a user of a tier-2 to claim "I tried this and
> it works", rather than portmgr saying "we tried this and it doesn't work".

Doesn't your proposed change in semantics of the 'FOR_ARCHS' stuff mean
that over time, as other architectures become more popular, most ports
will have to have an explicit 'ONLY_FOR_ARCHS' setting?  If the default
effectively becomes 'ONLY_FOR_ARCHS= i386 amd64' then as ports are shown
to work on different platforms they will need an ONLY_FOR_ARCHS line in
their Makefiles listing where they are known to work?  Or else the ports
becomes effectively i386 / amd64 only?

> (Of course, for things like p5-* it doesn't really matter; if perl
> builds, to a first approximation they'll build as well.  I'm talking
> about the things like biology/, deskutils/, games/, math/, science,
> x11*/, and so forth.)
> What do people think?

There are a lot of ports where the distinction between CPU architectures
is pretty much irrelevant.  I can't see portmaster(8) (for example)
failing to work anywhere the base system works.

I was thinking about this a while back.  Test the contents of packages
to see if they install any object code -- ports/129210 -- and mark the
ones that don't as arch-independent in some way (CATEGORIES+= arch-indep



Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                   7 Priory Courtyard
                                                  Flat 3
PGP:     Ramsgate
JID: matthew at               Kent, CT11 9PW

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