The future of portmaster [and of ports-mgmt/synth]

Roger Marquis marquis at
Wed May 31 16:16:59 UTC 2017

Mark Linimon wrote:
> * some extensive changes to the ports framework are coming;

Is there a URL (other than svnweb) where we can see a project plan for
these changes?  As in the recent past (i.e., since 8-REL) the FreeBSD
end-user community has reason to be worried that:

  * popular tools that were broken in the last major ports update (to
  pkgng) will again not be considered part of the update,

  * developers and users of those tools will suffer the pain of
  significant refactoring (again) and their Linux-advocating co-engineers
  will be even more effective in reducing or eliminating FreeBSD in their

  * little discussion and few details will (again) be available before
  the transition, and

  * it will (again) not occur exclusively on a major revision boundary.

  ** These concerns are not so much workload-related as much as they are

The lack of planning in previous ports/pkg updates was destructive and
unnecessary.  Has anything changed?

Considering the delays in implementing base packages, pkg_audit that
ignores base or recently deprecated ports and yet another major upgrade
to the ports framework it should not need to be pointed out that our
favorite OS has become far more difficult to update and maintain than
any version of Linux.

> * these will require large changes to all the port upgrade tools;
> * no one has stepped forwards to offer to do the work for anything
>   other than poudriere AFAIK.

Perhaps this is because many of us have not heard of the extensive
changes coming to the ports framework until now much less had the
opportunity to contribute to discussion much less policies that should
guide it.

> If no one does the work, at the time the large changes come, the
> other tools will break.

Bottom line, these are not just tools breaking, this is FreeBSD


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