[Build-common-hackers] Bug#537240: Bug#537240: Bug#537240: Bug#537240: cdbs: should create versioned debhelper dependency

Jonas Smedegaard dr at jones.dk
Mon Aug 3 19:44:14 UTC 2009

Hash: SHA512

On Mon, Aug 03, 2009 at 11:52:04AM -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:
>Marc Haber <mh+debian-bugs at zugschlus.de> writes:
>> packages built with cdbs currently trigger a lintian 
>> package-lacks-versioned-build-depends-on-debhelper, but the cdbs 
>> maintainer thinks that cdbs' behavior is correct.
>> On Thu, Jul 16, 2009 at 02:22:08PM +0200, Jonas Smedegaard wrote:
>>> >On Thu, Jul 16, 2009 at 01:53:24PM +0200, Jonas Smedegaard wrote:
>>> >> On Thu, Jul 16, 2009 at 01:13:48PM +0200, Marc Haber wrote:
>>> >> >cdbs creates an unversioned debhelper dependency, which triggers 
>>> >> >a lintian warning on the generated package.
>>> >>
>>> >> Could you please quote that lintian warning?
>>> >
>>> I disagree with the described "recommended practice".  That could 
>>> apply to *any* package, not just debhelper.  Backports older than 
>>> oldstable will always be risky business!
>The debhelper man page says:
>       Once your package uses debhelper to build, be sure to add debhelper
>       to your Build-Depends line in debian/control. You should
>       build-depend on a version of debhelper equal to (or greater than)
>       the debhelper compatibility level your package uses. So if your
>       package used compatibility level 7:
>         Build-Depends: debhelper (>= 7)
>This was an intentional change in Lintian to bring it in line with the
>practice explicitly recommended in the debhelper man page.  If the
>debhelper maintainer thinks we're being too picky, I'm happy to change it
>back, but since this is a question of best practices around the use of
>debhelper, I think the debhelper maintainer rightfully has final say (at
>least if they want it).
>Personally, given the documentation benefits of having the dependencies
>match the compat level and the ease of fixing this even if not considered
>a problem per se, I'm mystified by the reaction of the cdbs maintainer.

Please note that cdbs do not enforce unversioned debhelper dependency: 
Only under special circumstances (and forbidden by Debian Policy to do 
automated) are dependencies generated which - if not overridden by the 
package - may include an unversioned dependency on debhelper.

Versioned dependencies are avoided whenever permitted by Debian Policy, 
to ease backporting and to ease use of alternative tools providing same 

Hope that clarifies my opinion.  If not I am happy to elaborate (and 
hopefully able to be convinced if what I say cannot make sense at all).

Kind regards,

  - Jonas

- -- 
* Jonas Smedegaard - idealist og Internet-arkitekt
* Tlf.: +45 40843136  Website: http://dr.jones.dk/

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