[Mageia-dev] Mirror layout

Buchan Milne bgmilne at multilinks.com
Fri Dec 10 17:37:07 CET 2010

On Friday, 10 December 2010 16:35:09 Wolfgang Bornath wrote:
> 2010/12/10 Buchan Milne <bgmilne at multilinks.com>:
> > easyurpmi should not be necessary. Users should not be expected to paste
> > random commands from random sites into a root shell.
> Yes, if urpmi were able to switch from one mirror to another one in
> case of any failures or at will of the user if the automatically
> selected mirror is too slow. An issue discussed often enough since
> Mandriva days (also reported as bug). Until this is not solved users
> are sometimes (in germany more often than "some times") forced to use
> such tools like easyurpmi or smarturpmi.

But, the user can also have problems here (if the mirror is too slow, if it is 
behind, if it isn't maintained and users are *still* vulnerable to "rogue 
mirror, keeping old vulnerable software around" issues).

> > Alternatively, the whole dichotomy that necessitated contributors to
> > create a separate project should be addressed differently, but keeping
> > the packages integrated into the distribution, but avoiding legal issues
> > by making it easy for entities hosting the files to avoid infringement.
> Isn't this what this whole discussion is about? There ARE legal issues
> with some software users regard as "must have". Now, how do you avoid
> these issues?

-split the software so mirrors have an easy method (e.g. rsync --exclude 
'*/*/*/tainted') of avoiding software that may be risky for them to distribute
-make the mirror list api support the user submitting the repos names they 
want to use (e.g. if I ask for tainted, give me a mirror for tainted, even if 
'non-free' is on a different mirror)
-expose these options in the GUI, and possibly use sane defaults (possibly 
even by region)
-improve automatic mirror switching in urpmi

IMHO, media.cfg is more useful for initial (network) installation, and the 
case where the user trusts their mirror.

> This is the big question we have been talking about for
> many days.
> >> Many if not all of which were in PLF for patent reasons, according to
> >> the package description.
> >> Which brings up a difference of PLF packages : the PLF description
> >> usually ends with a line specifying why they are there.  (At least
> >> packages destined for Mandriva users.)
> > 
> > Search for plf in e.g. http://svn.mandriva.com/cgi-
> > bin/viewvc.cgi/packages/cooker/ffmpeg/current/SPECS/ffmpeg.spec?revision=
> > 612098&view=markup
> Ah, does that search really give results? It should not because
> Mandriva always stated (officially) that they have nothing to do with
> PLF. I remember discussions where Mandriva representatives said that
> Mandriva can not acknowledge PLF's existance.

Mandriva was subverted :-).

Anyway, what difference does it make, whether a possible patent-infringing 
feature is provided in the source, or enabled by a --with flag doesn't change 
much. Unless Mandriva was going to actually remove patent infringing code in 
the tarballs before committing to svn ...

However, Mandriva packages do *NOT* in the meta-data shown to end-users 
indicate anything about PLF. As such, complaints about linking to infringing 
software are invalid.

> BTW: there are important differences between Mandriva packages and
> those built by PLF. Especially such as mplayer and vlc, with reasons.

Of course, but the majority are not *duplicated* from a software maintenance 
perspective, that would be a waste of time.


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