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Why break a single source package into many small packages?

PostPosted: 2017-12-13 18:22
by xuhdev
Can anyone shed some light on why Debian breaks a single source package into many small packages? For example, Debian separates development files and actual executable/libraries; it also sometimes separates documents into an individual package (gcc-doc).

Re: Why break a single source package into many small packag

PostPosted: 2017-12-13 18:38
by Bulkley
The UNIX philosophy is “Do one thing, and do it well.”


40 years of UNIX

Re: Why break a single source package into many small packag

PostPosted: 2017-12-14 06:19
by Head_on_a_Stick
xuhdev wrote:Can anyone shed some light on why Debian breaks a single source package into many small packages?

To allow users to strip down their systems as much as possible and save space, this is mainly applicable to embedded systems these days though.

Alpine Linux goes a step further — with separate -doc packages for the man pages and suchlike — and this allows it a very small footprint indeed.

By contrast, Arch Linux mashes all the header libraries in with the packages (hence no -dev packages) so Arch boxen tend to be more bloated even if the actual number of installed packages is significantly lower.