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Re: feature/package-vc has been merged

From: Eli Zaretskii
Subject: Re: feature/package-vc has been merged
Date: Mon, 07 Nov 2022 19:07:43 +0200

> From: Philip Kaludercic <philipk@posteo.net>
> Cc: monnier@iro.umontreal.ca,  rms@gnu.org,  emacs-devel@gnu.org
> Date: Mon, 07 Nov 2022 16:58:51 +0000
> Eli Zaretskii <eliz@gnu.org> writes:
> >> >> > And if you think many do, why not clone the repository directly into
> >> >> > ~/.emacs.d/elpa/?
> >> >> 
> >> >> Because that won't take care of scraping for autoloads, byte
> >> >> compilation and installing missing dependencies.
> >> >
> >> > I don't see why.  Please elaborate how having the repository inside
> >> > ~/.emacs.d gets in the way of these activities.
> >> 
> >> It doesn't get in the way, the issue just is that if you were to just
> >> clone a package right into .emacs.d, you would still have to do all
> >> these steps individually and manually.
> >
> > Which steps are those, and why do we have to do it manually?
> Let us assume `default-directory' is (locate-user-emacs-file "elpa").
> If I run "M-! git clone https://some.git.host.com/path/to/repo/foo.git";,
> then I'll just have a directory called "foo", right?  If I want to byte
> compile the files I'd e.g. have to open foo in Dired, mark all Emacs
> Lisp files, byte compile them, then run something like
> `make-directory-autoloads' myself.  Then I'd have to find the main file,
> check the dependency list and run M-x package-install on every one that
> is missing, again one-by-one.
> You don't have to do this for `package-install', because it invokes
> `package-unpack' that takes care of those details.  As
> package-vc-install doesn't use prepared tarballs, the equivalent process
> is a bit different (thus we have `package-vc-unpack'), but the intention
> is the same.  Bundle all the repetitive task into a single command.

OK, but my question was why all of this gets magically done when you
clone the repository outside ~/.emacs.d/elpa, but does not get done
when you clone it inside?  I thought this is what you were alluding to
when I asked why not clone into ~/.emacs.d.

> >   (if (fboundp 'normal-top-level-add-subdirs-to-load-path)
> >       (normal-top-level-add-subdirs-to-load-path))
> >
> > Example of directories which need this is the site-lisp directory.
> I was not familiar with this function.
> > Why cannot we do something like this in this case?
> I would have to try this out, but my worry is that in some cases this
> could add too many non-lisp directories.

The function can be easily extended to only add directories in which
we have *.el files.

> It still seems more elegant to encode what the lisp directory is in the
> package description.

You consider manual configuration of a package to be more elegant than
automatically finding the directories to put on load-path?

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