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feystorm
Tux's lil' helper
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Joined: 29 Jan 2004
Posts: 95

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 3:47 pm    Post subject: Portage/emerge too noisy? Reply with quote

So something thats been bugging me more and more is how much spam emerge spits out after emerge (specifically world emerges). I'm referring to all the postinstall messages that get dumped out.
Now I hang out in the IRC channel a lot, and I frequently see people come in with issues because they didnt read a postinstall message after an upgrade or such. But with as much spam as portage spits out after a world upgrade, I cant blame them for not wanting to read it.

When postinstall messages were first introduced to portage, they were useful. If they displayed something, you likely needed to pay attention to it. Now it just seems to be a way for the ebuild developers to display things they think you care about.

This is my opinion of course, but this has got to stop. Postinstall messages should be reserved for things that will actually cause breakage if ignored. A lot of these messages are how to add features to the package. But why these specific features? Why not some other feature that I think is really cool, and not what the ebuild developer has deemed awesome and worth noting about?
At the very least, it seems we need a different level of postinstall message. One level for spammy stuff like this (and the ability to disable it in make.conf). And then another level for messages that will actually cause problems. The biggest problem with this is the postfix example below, which claims will cause a problem, but seems to be complete fallacy.


Examples of what I'm talking about:
Code:

 * Messages for package app-vim/selinux-syntax-20041225:

 * 
 * This plugin provides syntax highlighting for SELinux type enforcement
 * policy (*.te) files.
 * 

Why the heck is a package description in a postinstall message?

Code:

 * Messages for package app-admin/sudo-1.8.2-r1:

 * To use the -A (askpass) option, you need to install a compatible
 * password program from the following list. Starred packages will
 * automatically register for the use with sudo (but will not force
 * the -A option):
 *
 *  [*] net-misc/ssh-askpass-fullscreen
 *      net-misc/x11-ssh-askpass
 *
 * You can override the choice by setting the SUDO_ASKPASS environmnent
 * variable to the program you want to use.

Thats nice, if I wanted to get this working, there is TONS of sudo documentation elsewhere.

Code:

 * Messages for package app-editors/vim-core-7.3.266:

 * Vim 7 includes an integrated spell checker. You need to install
 * word list files before you can use it. There are ebuilds for
 * some of these named app-vim/vim-spell-*. If your language of
 * choice is not included, please consult vim-spell.eclass for
 * instructions on how to make a package.
 * Note that the English word lists are no longer installed by
 * default.

 * Messages for package app-editors/vim-7.3.266:

 * To install a GUI version of vim, use the app-editors/gvim
 * package.
 * Vim 7 includes an integrated spell checker. You need to install
 * word list files before you can use it. There are ebuilds for
 * some of these named app-vim/vim-spell-*. If your language of
 * choice is not included, please consult vim-spell.eclass for
 * instructions on how to make a package.
 * Note that the English word lists are no longer installed by
 * default.
 * To see what's new in this release, use :help version7.txt

Wont cause any breakage, and the spell checker stuff is a large block of spam too, especially to have 2 packages talk about the exact same thing.

Code:

 * Messages for package dev-libs/cyrus-sasl-2.1.23-r6:

 * You have both 'gdbm' and 'berkdb' USE flags enabled.
 * gdbm will be selected.

Thats also nice. Will my application break? No.

Code:

 * Messages for package mail-mta/postfix-2.8.7:

 *
 * You must edit /etc/mail/aliases to suit your needs
 * and then run /usr/bin/newaliases. Postfix will not
 * work correctly without it.
 *
 * See the RELEASE_NOTES file in /usr/share/doc/postfix-2.8.7
 * for incompatibilities and other major changes between releases.

I havent a clue what this one is about. My postfix is working just fine and I didnt do a single flippin thing after I updated it. I also went and looked in the release notes file that its talking about. The last release note that even mentions 'alias' was from 2005!

Code:

 * Messages for package net-nds/openldap-2.4.24:

 * Adding back_dnssrv.so
 * Adding back_ldap.so
 * Adding back_meta.so
 * Adding back_monitor.so
 * Adding back_null.so
 * Adding back_passwd.so
 * Adding back_relay.so
 * Adding back_shell.so
 * Adding back_sock.so
 * //etc/openldap/ssl/ldap.key: exists, skipping
 * No certificates were generated
 * Self-signed SSL certificates are treated harshly by OpenLDAP 2.[12]
 * Self-signed SSL certificates are treated harshly by OpenLDAP 2.[12]
 * add 'TLS_REQCERT never' if you want to use them.
 * Getting started using OpenLDAP? There is some documentation available:
 * Gentoo Guide to OpenLDAP Authentication
 * (http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/ldap-howto.xml)
 * ---
 * An example file for tuning BDB backends with openldap is
 * DB_CONFIG.fast.example in /usr/share/doc/openldap-2.4.24/

I dont know what all this spam is for. A list of modules that got built? What am I going to do with that (that I cant to with an `ls` later when/if I actually care)? TLS stuff? This, I might see as reasonable to put in a postinstall, but it still wont cause sudden breakage. It has always been like this, if it was working before the upgrade, it'll still work now. Information for getting packages installed for the first time shouldnt be in postinstall messages. Thats what HOWTOs are for.


And this is just the last few entries from my world upgrade. I'm not going to post them all.
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mikegpitt
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Joined: 22 May 2004
Posts: 3200

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 4:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does the -quiet option to emerge reduce these messages? I don't know... I've never tried. As for missing important messages during a long `emerge -DuN world`, since I'm hardly in front of my keyboard during this time, I usually review the output of /var/log/portage/elog/summary.log to make sure I didn't miss something important, like a revdep-rebuild.
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feystorm
Tux's lil' helper
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Joined: 29 Jan 2004
Posts: 95

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mikegpitt wrote:
Does the -quiet option to emerge reduce these messages?

Not sure. I can give it a shot next world update I do. Unfortunately the documentation has a very helpful explanation of "Results may vary".
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yngwin
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Joined: 19 Dec 2002
Posts: 4398
Location: Suzhou, China

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 5:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Check the PORTAGE_ELOG_* variables in /usr/share/portage/config/make.conf.example
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feystorm
Tux's lil' helper
Tux's lil' helper


Joined: 29 Jan 2004
Posts: 95

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yngwin wrote:
Check the PORTAGE_ELOG_* variables in /usr/share/portage/config/make.conf.example


That looks better. From looking at the ebuilds of the packages in my examples, that may solve most of it. I'll file bug reports against the few remaining packages like postfix.

Thanks
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