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Re: Dependencies on the rust toolchain

On Fri, 2 Jun 2023 at 18:59, Jonathan Perkin <> wrote:
> * On 2023-06-02 at 13:36 BST, Hauke Fath wrote:
> >Given the weight and churn of Rust, I do think we should not blindly
> >upgrade utility libraries to Rusted versions, especially when - as in
> >this case - there is a non-rust alternative.
> >
> >I am inclined to make the libimagequant option for graphics/gd
> >non-mandatory. And/or package libimagequant v2.
> This will always be a bikeshed, and as someone with a focus on using
> binary package repositories where defaults need to cater for the
> majority of the target audience I will always strongly disagree.
> Packages should, in my opinion:
>   * Be useful, with most options that affect the functionality of the
>     software enabled by default.
>   * Use the newest releases of dependencies, rather than being tied to
>     older branches that might no longer be maintained.
> If people are running on older or limited hardware that is adversely
> affected by the number and size of dependencies, then that's why we have
> package options (which I fully support!) that they can disable in their
> local custom builds.
> As for Rust, I personally think it's a really nice language to program
> in with a fantastic developer experience (I'd certainly choose it for
> any new projects), and while that may not be a popular opinion in these
> parts, I think that a lot of upstream developers appear to agree, and I
> believe you are only going to find it harder and harder to avoid it in
> package dependencies as time goes on.

While pkgsrc still supports architectures which do not have rust
support (for the set of packages buildable without rust), the
additional effort of supporting the same set of rust-free packages on
other platforms should not be significant (and may actually help the
non rust supporting platforms in terms of more hands towards the same

Hopefully rust availability will keep expanding (albeit slowly) to
more platforms over time, though I suspect some platforms (cough cough
vax) may never have native rust...


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