Subject: Re: "sendmail" configuration file issue should be fixed
To: None <>
From: Alan Barrett <>
List: current-users
Date: 06/11/2006 19:53:49
On Sun, 11 Jun 2006, Johnny Billquist wrote:
> In a way, I would agree. But if someone now have been used to using
> NetBSD base for a long time, he has definitely used sendmail for a
> long time, and suddenly it will be gone.

Right.  And so the release notes for the first version that ships
without sendmail will need to include appropriate warnings, and advice
about how to deal with the removal of sendmail (by migrating to postfix,
or by installing sendmail from pkgsrc).  Those release notes have not
yet been written, but it might be useful if you reviewed them when
they are written, or if you contributed to them.  Automated upgrade
procedures will also need to be handled carefully.

> So, if he needs a tool, he should make sure it is installed by himself, 
> since base have suddenly decided to move.
> Since that seems to be acceptable, I would say that if someone wants to 
> use something, and depend on it, he should install it himself.

No, that conclusion does not follow.  Let's label some events:

A) you decide that you need a particular tool that's in the base system;
B) you learn that the tool will be removed in a future version of the
   base system;
C) you upgrade to a version of the base system that no longer includes
   the tool.

You seem to be saying that you should stop using the base system's
version of the tool as soon as event A occurs.  I say that you can defer
your decision until some time between B and C, and if you are lucky then
event B might never happen, and even if event B does happen, you might
find that you no longer care about the tool by that time.

If you really believed your own argument, then you wouldn't even rely
on ls(1) and cat(1) from the base system.

> "If we move such a vital servier out of the base system...".
> Well, we just did. Sendmail have been there since day one, and now it's 
> gone.
> Replacing it with postfix is not an invisible upgrade to people who 
> actually care to configure such things.

Right.  That's why the release notes and the upgrade procedures must be
done carefully.

> So, why have a mail daemon at all in the base? Just to deliver the
> results of /etc/{daily,weekly,monthly,security} to a local root?  As I
> said before, that we can do in a simpler way.

No, that's not the only reason.  Being able to deliver mail elsewhere is
also useful.

--apb (Alan Barrett)