Subject: User-level pkg documentation?
To: None <>
From: None <>
List: tech-pkg
Date: 07/16/1999 11:28:53

I may have overlooked something, but I wonder if there is a place
where the NetBSD package system is documented from a user-level
perspective.  There are certain aspects of the system which is a
little counter-intuitive and which could do with either some
coding improvements or better documentation (and anything's
better than nothing ;-):

 - Some of the targets used in source installs are a little
   deviant from the normal behaviour.  E.g. "make install" does
   not always install, "make deinstall" does not always deinstall
   the program (it rather usually tells you to manually do
   pkg_delete -- why can't make do that instead?)

 - There are a number of targets used that are "non-standard" (not
   sure how exposed this is for normal users).

 - pkg_info.  Hm.  There's no easy way that I've found to get
   complete information dumped about a package without having to
   know the exact version installed.  The -e option seemed to
   have the ability to match on a regexp, but it just quietly
   tests for the existence of a particular package and doesn't
   print any info (such as the actual version installed...).

 - I admit that it's a while since I read Packages.txt, but at
   the time I found it slightly confusing, and that it probably
   talked to the wrong audience -- it mixed internal implementation
   documentation of the package system with a more user-oriented
   documentation of what a developer normally needs to do to create
   or update a package.  In particular I'm missing a short overview
   of the targets to "make" that are needed in order to maintain a
   package.  (What triggered this was the recent introduction of the
   checksums file for the patches.)

Note that this is just my perception, so don't take this as sour
criticism of the current state of affairs.  If some of my points
above are based on misinformation, I'd be happy to be corrected, and
if it isn't it'd be nice if we could improve this situation.


- H=E5vard