Wednesday, 25 June 2014

Obsolete packages request for removal


I am one of the upstream maintainers of Cinnamon (desktop) and Nemo (file manager).

There are currently two unofficial PPAs for Ubuntu users to get up-to-date versions of this software, but at one point in time there was a maintainer for these packages on Debian, and so they made their way into Ubuntu eventually.  For whatever reasons, that maintainer abandoned the project, but unfortunately these very old, obsolete, and unsupported packages are still available in Ubuntu.

This results in a few problems:

- Users end up with non-working software (for various reasons, mostly attributable to library changes like GTK+ 3)
- Users think they've got the latest, greatest versions, and report bugs on these unsupported versions.
- The bugs get reported to their packages' Launchpad pages, which are unattended.
- Users have some expectation of support, when in fact there is no support for these older versions.

There is currently an initiative in Debian to re-introduce up-to-date packages for Cinnamon, but there is no official involvement, nor is there really any timeline on when it might trickle down to Ubuntu.

In the meantime, I'd like to humbly request that these packages be removed from distribution (universe), and if possible, some note attesting to such, when a user goes to the Launchpad page for that package.  I will make an effort to redirect users that have reported bugs there to use more appropriate channels.

The package names I am requesting this for are:


Thank you very much.

If this is an inappropriate mailing list for this topic, I would appreciate a recommendation as to the correct avenue to use for my request.