Mike Hearn mike at plan99.net
Sun Nov 27 10:54:26 CST 2005

On Sun, 27 Nov 2005 16:55:50 +0100, Stephan Hermann wrote:
> Yes, and who should support those bundles?

Er, presumably the people who wrote them, ie upstream - they're the ones
who understand how the software works, not you. Besides, what
exactly does "support" mean here: distributions should be able to patch
software as they see fit likely causing unpredictable side effects?

> So, stating this, how is a distributor able to rebuild windows sources
out of
> a linux compiler toolchain? How is a distributor able to rebuild a
> windows source inside a running wine, when there is no opensource MS
> VC/C++ compiler?

You don't have to use VC++ to build Windows binaries, that's a bizarre
idea. You can use cross-compilers to do it on Linux just as well.
I've built Win32 PE binaries on Linux before, it's actually quite easy.
Now whether the Mozilla build system specifically can cope with that, I
don't know. But that's an unrelated problem.

In the future I can see most of Wine being built that way (as real PE DLLs
instead of the current ELFDLL hybrids). A few programs expect to be able
to do things like parse the DLL headers straight off disk, load DLLs into
memory themselves bypassing the dynamic linker etc, and one way to support
that is to use real PE DLLs with a cross-compiler toolchain. The .so files
Wine uses are already not true ELF files, they just look like it. 
Switching the actual file format used would not be such a big deal.

> Yes. Speaking of OSS, it's in the packagers responsibility to decide what to 
> build and what to provide in a package and what not.

I strongly disagree with this idea, it introduces middle-men into the
system for no good reason. It's also one reason why I support upstream
providing binaries directly through systems like autopackage, bypassing
distributions (apart from it being more efficient generally). The people
who created the software are the ones who know best how the user should
experience it - indeed it's *their* right to decide that, seeing as how
they put the work in to create it.

Put another way, I've wasted far, far too many hours of my life debugging
problems in Wine introduced by distributors and 3rd party packagers who
arbitrarily overrode upstream decisions they knew nothing about.

thanks -mike

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