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Re: document package.el

From: Tom Tromey
Subject: Re: document package.el
Date: Sat, 21 Aug 2010 12:22:56 -0600
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/23.2 (gnu/linux)

>>>>> "Eli" == Eli Zaretskii <address@hidden> writes:

Tom> I finally found a little time to write some documentation for
Tom> package.el.

Eli> At this point I wondered why nothing is done with the Author and
Eli> Maintainer headers.

They weren't needed by the package manager.

Tom> +  A multi-file package is just a @file{.tar} file.

Eli> Does package.el really support only .tar files?  That sounds like an
Eli> unnecessary limitation, since Emacs supports much more.

Emacs doesn't have built-in support for anything else.  It relies on
external programs.  Since I think it is best not to rely on the
environment this way, I purposely limited package.el.  I still think
this was a good decision, because it only affects packagers, not users.
I don't know of any gain to be had by expanding this.

In any case I wrote the documentation to describe what exists now.

Eli> If this means a multi-file package cannot have a long description in
Eli> the form of "Commentary", then this sounds like an inconvenience,
Eli> e.g., if a package starts as a single file and then develops into a
Eli> multi-file one.

The problem is knowing which file to extract this information from.
It is not uncommon for several files to have comment headers.

Tom> +  If the package has an info manual, you should distribute the needed
Tom> +info files, plus a @file{dir} file made with @command{install-info}.

Eli> Not clear why the `dir' file is needed.  Are you trying to support
Eli> users that don't have install-info on their systems?



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