Position on large GPLed programs

Aaron Whitehouse lists at whitehouse.org.nz
Sat Sep 8 02:17:27 BST 2007

Hello all,

I filed a needs-packaging bug for UFO: Alien Invasion:

Somebody quite accurately pointed out that it is 250MB and that a
package that size is a significant new burden on mirrors.

Putting it on the mirrors would make life a lot easier than it is at
the moment. It is quite possible that we have 50, 5MB
applications that are less popular than this one.

What is the current position on big, GPLed programs? Do we just
package anything GPL and then modify our approach when/if mirrors
start to complain?

To me it would make sense to have a consistent approach. I understand
that the 700MB that are highest-rated in the popcon are put on the
CDs. That seems like a good analogy to this issue.

1) I think that we should indiscriminately package anything that has
an adequate license;
2) If mirrors start to complain, we should implement a new system so
that mirrors can choose how much they are prepared to mirror.

The new approach could be tied into the
system and some push-mirror idea:

If a mirror then chooses to only mirror 5GB of data, the Launchpad
Mirror Manager could tell the mirrors the most-used 5GB of files to
download, as rated by the popularity contest. If some push-mirroring
system was in place, then the mirrors would be asking Launchpad Mirror
Manager what they should be downloading anyway, so it shouldn't be
overly difficult to put caps in place if they are requested. The only
difficulty would be modifying the package manager to check other
mirrors if the package that the user wants is not available on their
preferred mirror. I suppose that a system like we currently use for
security updates could be used.

What are people's thoughts?


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