Debian Packages - why unofficial
Several people asked me why my debian packages of
Dan J Bernstein's software
are not included in the
Debian archive and so unofficial.
This web page gives an answer to this question.
Software released by Dan J Bernstein
does not comply with the
10.1.1) and so can not go into
So why not put them into
I would upload them, if I were allowed to, but the
Debian Policy (2.1.4)
This covers the Debian Policy violation of section
2.1.1, but there is still the violoation of section
10.1.1 Filesystem Structure.
2.1.4 The non-free section
Packages must be placed in non-free or
non-US/non-free if they are not compliant with the DFSG or
are encumbered by patents or other legal issues that make their
In addition, the packages in non-free and
must not be so buggy that we refuse to support them, and
must meet all policy requirements presented in this manual that it
is possible for them to meet.
 It is possible that there are policy requirements which the
package is unable to meet, for example, if the source is unavailable.
These situations will need to be handled on a case-by-case basis.
Why can closed source (e.g. acroread, netscape navigator,
communicator) software be included in
Debian non-free but not high quality, high secure
open source software, that just puts it files into unusual places?
I can not answer this question, in my humble opinion, this Debian
attitude is simply wrong, not at least because of security reasons and
the Policy should be changed.
Inronically there are -src and -installer packages of
Dan J Bernstein software
(qmail-src, serialmail-src, ucspi-tcp-src,
daemontools-installer, djbdns-installer), which do
not include binaries, but are able to produce a not distributable debian
package for local use. Some of these produced debs follow the
Filesystem Hierarchy Standard, some not, some do not follow the
author's installation instruction. In my opinion, this leads into more
problems than providing binary packages, see
To give you a small review on opinions of Debian maintainers, here are
some links covering discussions about this topic:
If you know more discussions about this topic, please let me know.
Gerrit Pape <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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