[maemo-developers] Why should it be so hard and should I even bother with Extras for fremantle?

From: Graham Cobb g+770 at cobb.uk.net
Date: Sun Nov 1 13:35:05 EET 2009
On Sunday 01 November 2009 10:22:00 Andrew Flegg wrote:
> On Sun, Nov 1, 2009 at 09:30, Martin Grimme <martin.grimme at gmail.com> wrote:
> > it really looks wrong IMHO if stuff like socat, rootsh, or openssh
> > turn up in the extras repository ready for end-users to be installed.
> > extras should only contain applications that are safe for everyone to
> > play around with.
> However, if it is clear to users what to expect when they install
> those apps; and they don't recklessly reduce the capability of the
> system, I don't think they're that bad. So, perhaps, OpenSSH Server
> should have a clearer warning that the root password it forces you to
> choose should be strong, as it will allow anyone to log in to your
> tablet if it is online and they know the password.

I agree with Andrew.  These applications should be available to everyone.  
There are two issues:

1) There will end up being a LOT of command line utilities.  Over time I would 
expect a lot of debian utilities to be ported.  This will clutter up the 
Application Manager with things of interest to a tiny number of people.

The medium term solution, I think, is to create a new category: user/advanced 
or user/command-line.

In the short term, I suggest we look at creating a user/utilities meta-package 
called something like "Command Line Tools" which would depend on the (non 
user/) tools themselves.  Whenever someone ports one of these tools they 
would work with the maintainer of the "Command Line Tools" package to have it 
added to the Description and to the dependencies.  We might even manually 
force the promotion of the new "Command Line Tools" package if someone 
(X-Fade?) is happy that it is just a trivial port.

2) Some of the tools may be fairly dangerous.  But then that is true of many 
of the tools already on the system (mke2fs?).  I don't see that as a problem 
if it is marked as an advanced tool except for cases (like OpenSSH Server) 
where just installing it does something potentially dangerous to your system 
(another example might be something which installs a daemon which does 
something very useful but which reduces battery life).  

In this case, the medium term solution is, again, to put it in a user/advanced 
category and the short term solution is, I think, just to make it explain how 
it is dangerous in BIG LETTERS! 


P.S. Can we please start a new thread for discussion of the brainstorm 
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