installing a package that wants the "wrong" java

Florian Diesch diesch at
Tue Jun 29 19:50:27 UTC 2010

"Robert P. J. Day" <rpjday at> writes:

> On Mon, 28 Jun 2010, Florian Diesch wrote:
>> "Robert P. J. Day" <rpjday at> writes:
> ... snip ...
>> >   also, if that software really is compatible with openjdk, would
>> > it make more sense for the vendor to list as its dependency the
>> > more generic "java-compiler" or "java6-sdk" so that either one
>> > would satisfy the dependency?  thanks.
>> I think so. But you better ask at the developer mailing list what's
>> the current best practise. Maybe someone could update
>   here's a more specific question -- is there a way to package
> software such that it depends on the meta(?)package java6-sdk, but it
> "prefers" sun's java as opposed to openjdk? 

If you use "sun-java6-sdk | java6-sdk" as dependency the package manager
will accept any package providing java6-sdk and install sun-java6-sdk if
no package providing java6-sdk is already installed

>   my attitude is, i'm fine with openjdk not being *officially*
> supported, i just want the *option* of it satisfying the dependency.
> is there a way that this sort of thing is done in packaging?  maybe an
> installation dialog of the form, "i officially support sun's java, but
> i see you have openjdk installed -- are you sure you want to do this?"

You could check with update-java-alternatives what's the currently
active Java package and use debconf to display a warning, see the
debconf-devel manpage

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