[vlc-devel] Re: vlc: svn commit r11754 (rocky)

R. Bernstein rocky at panix.com
Sat Jul 16 18:37:08 CEST 2005

Rémi Denis-Courmont writes:
 > That would be good.
 > Debian has 0.71. It seems that the Windows build has it too.

Okay, configure.ac now tolerates 0.71.

 > > I'm not sure I understand the logic here. libcdio 0.71 doesn't have
 > > CD paranoia and libcdio 0.72 does. If one wants cdparanoia in the
 > > libcdio audio CD plugin or any new feature for that matter added to a
 > > package, then one has to check for the version number. That's why a
 > > version number exists in the first place.
 > I'm not aware of the specifics of libcdio ChangeLog.
 > But from my experience with gnutls, I can tell that it is not good to 
 > rely on version numbers. At some point, I theoritically needed gnutls 
 > >= 1.0.17 but it turned out that it would work on Debian with gnutls 
 > 1.0.16 because the change was backported. So I went for a feature check 
 > rather than a version check.

Ahh - now I understand. Thanks. I think though this is a matter of
taste and the specific details.  I'm not sure one can make a blanket
statement. Adding a feature check is more involved perhaps error
prone, and probably slower than a release test. If at some point one
has to add several feature tests, it is better and simpler to check
for the release.

Worse, it's hard to make a feature check for things like memory-leak
fixes or valgrind-caught errors. I know none of those changes have been
backported to Debian for the newer libcdio or vcdimager releases.

You have the same feature/release issue in building packages in noting
dependencies.  Some packages look for say /bin/perl and others put a
dependency in for a Perl package of that distro. Most packages I've
encountered in fact rely more on the version numbers than make
feature/file tests.

In your gnutls situation, you made a decision that you'd rather use
any gnutls that works. For libcdio and vlc, I'm delighted that you
feel libcdio is necessary. Others have decided to disable cddax and
vcdx by default. I'm not sure of the exact reasons - such things don't
seem to be discussed all that often - but I note that it tends to make
it more optional which is why I don't think it so bad to require a
newer version libcdio (3 releases rather than 4 behind the current
one, 0.75).

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