Subject: Re: encumbered dependencies considered harmful (audio/sox and lame)
To: Greg Troxel <>
From: Dieter Baron <>
List: tech-pkg
Date: 03/06/2007 23:42:53
In article <> Greg wrote:
: I ran pkg_rolling-replace to update, and it failed on sox because sox
: requires audio/lame.   lame has an apparently messy patent situation
: (in many countries; this doesn't seem to be a us-only issue) and is
: marked LICENSE= and thus won't build.

: This seems to have started with sox 13 in revision 1.40 of
: pkgsrc/audio/sox/Makefile.

: As a general rule I think that packages (without a LICENSE tag) should
: not depend on packages with a LICENSE= tag unless it is really
: necessary (meaning the package would be not useful, or less than 50%
: as useful) without them.  (It would make sense to have a PKG_OPTION to
: indicate that one wants the dependency, but I think simply not present
: is better than simply present.)

  I agree.  However, if providing such an option is easy, please do.
Some peoople value functionality over licesnse purity.

: So, I'd like to drop the lame bl3 line from sox's Makefile, assuming
: it still builds (in process).  Any objections?

  Yes, please make the dependency optional, don't just remove it,
causing a regression.