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Old 02-23-2012, 07:49 PM
Andreas Beckmann
 
Default mass bug filing against packages that don't remove alternatives

Hi,

I'm planning to file bugs against all packages that currently leave
alternatives on the system after they were removed. Forgetting to remove
alternatives usually leaves dangling symlinks on the system and in most
cases these are dangling symlinks in /usr/bin

At the moment there are 20 packages in wheezy and 13 in sid with this
problem (a few bugs are already filed), eventually some of these are
only depending on a buggy package.
Furthermore there is a currently unchecked number of packages that don't
properly migrate alternatives on upgrades from squeeze, about 300 logs
show the symptoms but most of these are probably caused by dependencies,
the number of buggy packages is hopefully much smaller.

These bugs were found by further analyzing the piuparts logfiles but
there is currently no separate report for them on piuparts.d.o.
For piuparts this is an error for the sid test (leaving unowned files
after purge), but for all other tests this is only a warning to allow
testing more packages for more serious issues.

I'll file these bugs with Severity: important since having a piuparts
clean archive is a release goal since lenny.
Or is this a policy violation that would warrant a higher severity,
especially if the package leaves dangling symlinks in /usr/bin?

A dd-list for wheezy+sid (19 source packages) is appended, this may
include packages that already had bugs filed (and these of course won't
see a new bug report).

Andreas


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Old 02-23-2012, 07:59 PM
Jakub Wilk
 
Default mass bug filing against packages that don't remove alternatives

* Andreas Beckmann <debian@abeckmann.de>, 2012-02-23, 21:49:
I'm planning to file bugs against all packages that currently leave
alternatives on the system after they were removed. Forgetting to
remove alternatives usually leaves dangling symlinks on the system and
in most cases these are dangling symlinks in /usr/bin


The problem with alternatives is that nobody knows how to handle them
correctly: see bug #71621 (no, I didn't forget the leading digit).


--
Jakub Wilk


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Old 03-22-2012, 08:56 AM
Andreas Beckmann
 
Default mass bug filing against packages that don't remove alternatives

On 2012-02-23 21:59, Jakub Wilk wrote:
> * Andreas Beckmann <debian@abeckmann.de>, 2012-02-23, 21:49:
>> I'm planning to file bugs against all packages that currently leave
>> alternatives on the system after they were removed. Forgetting to
>> remove alternatives usually leaves dangling symlinks on the system and
>> in most cases these are dangling symlinks in /usr/bin
>
> The problem with alternatives is that nobody knows how to handle them
> correctly: see bug #71621 (no, I didn't forget the leading digit).

OK, I'll include some hints and rationale how to remove the alternative
properly (based on Jonathans reply to above bug):

Hi,

during a test with piuparts I noticed your package left unowned files
on the system after purge, which is a violation of policy 6.8:


http://www.debian.org/doc/debian-policy/ch-maintainerscripts.html#s-removedetails

The leftover files are actually alternatives that were installed by
the package but have not been properly removed.

While there is ongoing discussion how to remove alternatives correctly
(see http://bugs.debian.org/71621 for details) the following strategy
should work for regular cases:
* 'postinst configure' always installs the alternative
* 'prerm remove' removes the alternative
* 'postrm remove' and 'postrm disappear' remove the alternative
In all other cases a maintainer script is invoked (e.g. upgrade,
deconfigure) the alternatives are not modified to preserve user
configuration.
Removing the alternative in 'prerm remove' avoids having a dangling
link once the actual file gets removed, but 'prerm remove' is not
called in all cases (e.g. deconfigured or disappearing packages) so
the postrm must remove the alternative again (update-alternatives
gracefully handles removal of non-existing alternatives).

Filing this as important as having a piuparts clean archive is a
release goal since lenny.

From the attached log (scroll to the bottom...):


cheers,

Andreas


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