I remember a discussion on data.debian.org:
http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel/2008/05/msg00970.html
Has anything like that been implemented?

On Fri, Sep 16, 2011 at 12:57 PM, Francesco P. Lovergine
<fran...@debian.org> wrote:
> On Fri, Sep 16, 2011 at 03:43:43AM -0700, Hamish wrote:
>> Hamish wrote:
>> > > ps- these days since disk space is cheap, I wonder if we can
>> > > finally ship a gmt-coast-high package instead of needing to
>> > > run the bundled script to get that.
>>
>> Francesco:
>> > I would ask ftp-masters about that.
>>
>> It would seem the /usr/sbin/gmt-coastline-download may
>> no longer work if you choose the main ftp site:
>>   ftp://ftp.soest.hawaii.edu/gmt/
>>
>> as it only has the latest 45mb version available as a single
>> file.
>>
>>
>> The sites marked in the script with a "*" do have the old
>> versions, e.g.:
>>   ftp://ftp.scc.u-tokai.ac.jp/pub/gmt/
>>
>> [the 2.1 version of the gshhs data was 30mb for full-res and 9.5mb
>> for high-res .bzip2 dataset. compare to the huge fgfs-base
>> package]
>>
>>
>> if we wish to preserve the old versions maybe we should put a
>> copy on Alioth(MkII) instead of relying on a 3rd party site
>> which may go away at any time? (the .au ftp site doesn't work
>> for me right now at all)
>>
>>
>> Ultimately I'd like the zyGrib, opencpn, etc packages which also
>> provide coastline copies to all depend on a single data package.
>> (to this end I've already patched opencpn to use xtide's package)
>>
>
> Eh it would be definitively better depending on a arch-indep data
> package and trying to convince ftpmasters in supporting it.
> I already had problems with unstable mirrors.
>
> --
> Francesco P. Lovergine
>
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