multi-arch and non-multi-arch gobject introspection in Debian and derivatives

Colin Watson cjwatson at
Wed Nov 26 10:31:24 UTC 2014

On Wed, Nov 26, 2014 at 10:11:02AM +0000, Mike Gabriel wrote:
> At the moment all gir1.2-* packages in Debian must have multi-arch paths for
> the .typelibs files that provide information for gobject introspection.
> In Ubuntu and possibly other derivatives, this step has not been taken yet,
> .typelibs files are installed to non-multi-arch locations.
> This makes it quite difficult for downstream maintainers (Ubuntu et al.) to
> simply pull over src:packages that provide some gir1.2-* bin:package.

Ubuntu really wants to have this feature (and indeed did some of the
work for it); the only reason it wasn't in Ubuntu 14.10 was release
management concerns.  The current Ubuntu development series has
multiarch typelibs, so this is no longer an issue for Ubuntu.

I don't think it's worth complicating packages for this.  I would expect
derivatives to either move forward with gobject-introspection or hold
back (or trivially patch) packages that install typelibs.

> My proposal for the interim phase (however long that might be) is to provide
> symlinks in gir1.2-* packages that provide correct functionalities in Debian
> and downstream distros (such as described above), as well.
> /usr/lib/girepository-1.0/Caja-2.0.typelib
> -> /usr/lib/<triplet>/girepository-1.0/Caja-2.0.typelib
> This surely wouldn't be something worth a freeze exception (I guess), but
> once we have jessie in place, is this something others would consider, as
> well?

Certainly by the time jessie is out this should be a rapidly diminishing
concern; and adding those symlinks stands a good chance of breaking the
very use cases that multiarch gir1.2-* was trying to fix, because you'd
no longer be able to coinstall gir1.2-* from different architectures.
Please don't.


Colin Watson                                       [cjwatson at]

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