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Re: Introducing the patchadd binary patch toolchain

Salut, Elad,

On Tue, 28 Apr 2009 17:22:02 +0300, Elad Efrat wrote:
> > The tools
> > =========
> > 
> > The tools, which have been added to pkgsrc/sysutils/patchadd
> > recently,
> So you've added an incomplete tool to update the system into mainline
> pkgsrc? out of pure curiosity (and since this is a tool to update
> NetBSD, supposedly), did you discuss it in a public forum as you do
> now?

I did discuss this with other developers. And as mentioned before, this
tool is working, it's just that some features which people may want are
already missing. My goal was to get this out in time for the 5.0
release so we can start rolling binary patches by now.

> > consist of the following tools:
> > 
> >  - patch_add, a tool to apply binary patches,
> >  - patch_delete, a tool to back out a patch added without -r, and
> >  - patch_info, a tool to display the list of installed patches.
> Why are they all separate tools and not a single one?

To mimic the behavior of the pkg_* tools.

> I don't understand why invent yet another file format and syntax. I

I'm not sure what format you would have chosen. I don't think there's
an existing one. This one is pretty similar to what our packages use,

> also highly recommend you think about common uses for updating tools
> (because hopefully that's what we want - a *single* tool to be used
> to update the system, and not a confusing collection) -- therefore,

Please note that "Backing out a patch" and "What patches are
installed?" are different use cases than "Install a patch".

> you should think on how you can make life easier for people who
> release patches, write security advisories/notes based on the
> patches, and so on.

They only create the patch files and regen the index.

> Needless to say, haze did all that almost two years ago.
> > The patch index
> > ===============
> Is that another format and syntax?

It actually embeds the syntax of the +INFO file of the patch, as you
could probably have deduced. It just extends it in order to contain
multiple patches in one file. Also, it is generated, so nobody would
ever have to bother with it unless for debugging the patch_tool.

> Out of personal interest, can you elaborate on why you chose to write
> a tool from scratch, given nbupdate (agc@) and haze (mine) freely
> available? also, can you elaborate on why you prefer binary patching
> to simply distributing replacement files?

At some point maybe. Right now I'm too busy.


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