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Re: [bug-patch] Time to repatriate the patch manual?

From: Karl Berry
Subject: Re: [bug-patch] Time to repatriate the patch manual?
Date: Thu, 17 Mar 2011 22:02:46 GMT

    It is time either to add patch to diffutils or to split
    patch's manual out from diffutils?

Oh, it has been time for a decade or so.

    If the latter is the preferred solution, I'd be happy to make a patch
    to split diff.texi into diff.texi and patch.texi.

The latter is not the preferred solution.  It is anti-preferred.  rms
and/or Paul (not sure who did the actual writing) intentionally included
patch in the diffutils manual under the theory that patching was a sort
of operation on diff files and logically belonged in the same place.

Of course the idea was to also have the patch sources in diffutils,
instead of a separate patch package.  However, no one ever found time to
work on that.  Meanwhile, no updates of patch were happening.  This went
on for years and years.  Finally (and very happily) Andreas Gruenbacher
came forward to work on patch as its own package, which he (and now Jim)
have been actively doing ever since.  So there it has stayed.

    On a side note, any chance of making the diffutils & patch
    documentation available under the same terms as automake's? 

The determining factor there is whether the FSF publishes the manual as
a book.  If so, the Debian-hated clauses have to stay. 

I don't see diffutils listed at http://shop.fsf.org/category/books/.
Therefore I conclude that the diff.texi license can lose the Cover
clauses, if Jim and Paul (as the current diffutils maintainers) so
desire.  There is no official recommendation from GNU to do this (or not
do it, given that it's not FSF-published).


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