CDBS and upstream changelogs
paran at lysator.liu.se
Tue Sep 2 10:57:10 UTC 2008
I recently discovered a missing upstream changelog in a package, and after
some confusion I found that it was caused by CDBS. Here is the relevant CDBS
cdbs (0.4.49ubuntu3) hardy; urgency=low
* debhelper.mk.in: Do not install upstream changelogs by default. They are
huge and thus waste a lot of archive and CD space, quite uninteresting for
ordinary users, and easy to get by downloading the source package or
visiting the upstream page pointed out in copyright.
As this change was made intentionally I send this here instead of reporting it
as a bug.
I realize that I am probably not the mentioned "ordinary user". However I do
find it very annoying to have to manually download huge source packages just
to read what have changed in a newly installed version of a package. That is
if I even realize that the package is built using CDBS, and I therefore
should not expect the normal changelog.gz.
This is from the Debian Policy Manual, 12.7 Changelog files:
If an upstream changelog is available, it should be accessible
as /usr/share/doc/package/changelog.gz in plain text. If the upstream
changelog is distributed in HTML, it should be made available in that form
as /usr/share/doc/package/changelog.html.gz and a plain text changelog.gz
should be generated from it using, for example, lynx -dump -nolist. If the
upstream changelog files do not already conform to this naming convention,
then this may be achieved either by renaming the files, or by adding a
symbolic link, at the maintainer's discretion.
So disabling CDBS automatic handling of this looks like an obvious policy
violation to me. It also introduces hidden changes in Ubuntu compared to
Debian, as CDBS built packages synced from Debian to Ubuntu will miss
documentation files compared to the package in Debian.
How much space does this really save on the CDs?
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