Debian Bug report logs - #604397
debian-policy: build-arch and build-indep targets are required

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Package: debian-policy; Maintainer for debian-policy is Debian Policy List <>; Source for debian-policy is src:debian-policy.

Reported by: Roger Leigh <>

Date: Sun, 21 Nov 2010 21:42:02 UTC

Severity: wishlist

Merged with 345619, 374029, 619284

Found in versions debian-policy/, debian-policy/

Fixed in version debian-policy/

Done: Russ Allbery <>

Bug is archived. No further changes may be made.

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Date: Wed, 2 Mar 2011 03:59:43 -0600
From: Jonathan Nieder <>
Subject: Re: debian-policy: require build-arch and build-indep targets
Message-ID: <20110302095943.GC14737@elie>
References: <>
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In-Reply-To: <>
User-Agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)
(-cc: Bug#229357)
Jakub Wilk wrote:
> * Jonathan Nieder <>, 2011-03-01, 21:01:

>> So it seems to me that "dpkg-buildpackage -B" ought to be taught to
>> run the equivalent of
>>	debian/rules build-arch
>>	if test "$?" = 2
>>	then
>>		debian/rules build
>>	fi
> make exits with code 2 "if any errors were encountered". So no, this
> approach cannot be used.

Did you read the rest of the message?

But okay, I am willing to accept that this is an approach we do
not want to use.  Which still leaves us with a number of options.

To help some existing packages today (and break others):

 1. Find an active "make" maintainer.
 2. Polish the patch in Bug#598534 and apply it.
 3. Use
	make-first-existing-target build-arch build -- -f debian/rules

To help no existing packages today but make it easy for packages
to opt in (and not break the others):

 1. Introduce a Build-Options facility for packages to advertise
    capabilities like this.
 2. Teach dpkg-buildpackage to honor it.

To move towards a world in which all packages support build-arch and

 1. Teach dpkg-buildpackage a new switch to use those targets.
    The operator can easily figure out when they are available if
    building by hand.
 2. Introduce a lintian test for build-arch/build-indep presence.
 3. Contribute patches.
 4. When there are not so many packages left without the feature,
    propose a mass bug-filing/release goal.
 5. Finally, update policy and make autobuilders use the switch
    to use those targets when building unstable and experimental.

Just my two cents,

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