On Fri, 9 Apr 1999, Peter Jeremy wrote:

> There's no mechanism for updating a package - and it's not clear (to
> me anyway) how this can be done safely in a general way.  Where the
> update is only minor (and won't affect the dependent packages), you
> can use something like:

For an update to work, files that must be preserved (shared
libraries mainly) over an update must be tagged.  If libfoo-1.0
is installed and I upgrade to libfoo-2.3, the libfoo-1.0 package
should be removed except /usr/local/share/libfoo.so.1.0.  Then
libfoo-2.3 gets installed and *inherits*
/usr/local/share/libfoo.so.1.0 in its +CONTENTS so that if you
want to do a wholesale removal of the libfoo package in the
future, you can do it.

A completely different approach to this dependency nightmare is
to link statically.  I know there are drawbacks to this and the
costs are too great in numerous situations.  But if you *can*
practically do this, you can demote a runtime dependency to a
build time dependency which is a Good Thing for your sanity.


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