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Re: "doc" option

Julio Merino <> writes:

> On 11/26/10 6:07 PM, Aleksej Saushev wrote:
>>    Hello!
>> Unless anyone objects in a week, I'll start adding "doc" option to packages
>> I'm interested to be stripped of installed documentation. First positions
>> in the queue are occupied by modular packages. I'm not going to change
>> current state, default will be to install documentation.
> What's the reason for this?  Adding this as an option will only make
> packages a nightmare to maintain.  And this option will make binary
> packages obscure because one won't be able to tell whether the binary
> package includes documentation or not.
> I understand the willingness to have this for some packages (where the
> documentation is either huge or license-incompatible with the code),
> but in these cases the documentation should be a separate package and
> not an option.  Making this a general option is potentially harmful
> for our users and for the maintainers.

That's a good point, and I admit that I was thinking of the cases where
building documentation is painful.  So I'd like to revise and extend my
remarks :-)

I agreee that split packages for docs are nice, but from my experience
maintaining split packages (and in the case of gutenprint, giving up),
doing that when upstream doesn't accomodate splitting is a lot of work.
I certainly won't object if someone does that, of course.  So one can
view doc options as a workaround until the glorious day when all
packages are split like they should be.

I think it makes sense to have some option to be able to avoid a package
needlessly depending on huge toolsets, for some values of needlessly and
huge.  Typically it's TeX and docbook-xml that are large; I don't object
to those in theory, but on a minimal system dragging them in is

I'm unclear on the benefit of removing man pages and other things that
are small and don't cause tool bloat, but I can understand that some
people want that.

So perhaps in a maximally complex world there would be options
  doc           all documentation that is inexpensive to build
  doc-tex       all documentation that requires tex to build
  doc-xml       all documentation that requires xml to build
but this seems excessive at first glance.

Aleksej: could you give a few examples of what you want to do and why?
And perhaps an example diff to one package?  I think the key question is
whether what you want is wanted by others, and cost of the change to
those who don't want this.

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