Subject: Re: Revisiting the tk80 issue
To: Hubert Feyrer <>
From: UNIX hacker and security officer <>
List: tech-pkg
Date: 07/17/1998 00:25:38
[Pardon the ramble but I had to get this out.]

Hubert Feyrer sez:
 * On Thu, 16 Jul 1998, Markus Illenseer wrote:
 * >  I forgot we had those already. How about reminding/offering to the user
 * > that he can alter the installation target when installing specific
 * > packages using pkg_add?
 * That's not that a good idea, as the pkg may have compiled-in paths which 
 * you can't change at pkg_add time. This said, pkg_add's -p option should 
 * be used with much care and low expectations of a working system!

Well, then we better figure out how to make packagized things more able
to respond to the -p option.  Compiling in hard paths is a _bad_ thing
and should be avoided; unfortunately I don't see a way around this.  The
closest I see to solving the problem would be distributing anything
which was hard-coded with object modules which referenced an external
symbol in a .c file, i.e. object-only distribution, which would then
be compiled and installed to produce a working package.

The other solution would be to have all "paths" somewhere in a config
file, but that requires one hard path pointing to the config file, so
that's kinda moot, unless it's a post-install config file which goes
somewhere like /etc, and even then (I'm tired, can you tell?)

Needless to say, I think we're trying to avoid this, but we would do
well to find some way of making the installations more robust and less
fragile WRT installation paths.  I mean, hell, Sun can do it, why can't

 * Hubert Feyrer <>

I'm really a software toolsmith and a musician by trade, but nobody really
needs a software toolsmith much, and the music industry is so cutthroat
that it would probably do me in.  So I do systems administration on the
side as a hobby.  Funny that my hobby finds more work than either of my