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Re: Plugin Package Paths

From: Maxim Cournoyer
Subject: Re: Plugin Package Paths
Date: Wed, 13 Sep 2023 22:49:52 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/28.2 (gnu/linux)

Hi Peter,

Peter Polidoro <> writes:

> Maxim Cournoyer <> writes:
>> These programs should be patched to honor e.g. FREECAD_PLUGINS_PATH
>> or
>> similar.  Then a 'native-search-path' specification can be attached
>> to
>> the freecad packaged, and finding freecad plugins will happen in any
>> profile.
>> The FREECAD_PLUGINS_PATH should be written with the intent of
>> upstreaming it (sharing it for inclusion with upstream), as that
>> should
>> be valuable to other distributions/scenarios as well.
> Thanks. I have reached out to both the kicad and freecad communities
> about adding support for environment variable options in the search
> paths, but so far people from both communities seem skeptical.
> Do you know of any examples of other projects doing this properly in
> Python and C++ that I can show to these communities?

Developers only accustomed to file hierachy standard (FHS) systems will
indeed need some rationale to be convinced.  I think snapcraft may be an
environment where such support could be useful, I'm not so sure.  At
least NixOS is another non-FHS system that would benefit from a plugins
search path.

> Both programs search for the executable path, then base other system
> search paths relative to this root path. In general, do you think it
> is better to use an environment variable to set the root to the
> profile directory or to be more narrow and just specify the plugin
> path or paths if the program uses more than one?

In general it's better to be precise; this way the search paths in Guix
can match only what's needed, and it means less scanning of the file
system to do.

> I am guessing it may take a while, if ever, to get such changes
> included in the upstream projects. In the mean time, is it considered
> bad practice to attempt to just patch the source code in the Guix
> package?

In the mean time it's OK to have them live as patches in the Guix tree,
as they are needed :-).


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