Splitting up the 'mega' patches

Gerard Beekmans gerard at linuxfromscratch.org
Thu Jan 2 16:07:02 PST 2003

On January 2, 2003 04:41 pm, Mark Lee wrote:
> Is it possible to put comments in the patch files themselves? It would be
> really nice if the patches were self-documented. Maybe this isn't possible
> (I don't know enough about patches so I apologize if I'm wasting your
> time).

I was thinking about the same thing today. We could keep the descriptions in 
the book less technical and simply refer to the patch file for the nitty 
gritty details. As you may have seen, I updated the Glibc libnss patch in the 
book but it doesn't go into too much detail and isn't totally clear yet. I 
didn't want to write an essay on the issue.

Now, you can't put comments in a diff file like you do normally in files (by 
starting a line with a # character). Patch will take everything as-is and 
will try to patch the file by inserting that kind of data. #'s at the 
beginning of a line don't mean much, patch will just try to find lines that 
start with that.

So, the alternative is to have every patch create a README.lfs file in which 
we can dump the detailed explanations, we can even go into some detail with 
coding issues why things are done the way they are (instead of saying 'fixes 
a compilation problem in regards to duplicate variables).

The book, in turn, would then have a short explanation and "For more 
information read the README.LFS file which which the patch created. Or open 
the patch file in your favorite editor and read through it before applying 
it". Or something along these lines.

In the mean time while people give feedback on how good or stupid an idea this 
is, Mark Lee, you can start writing such explanations and be as detailed as 
you can be. I'll take your blurbs and add them to the patches.

I haven't forgotten about your previous emails in which you started explaning 
patches, etc. Can you collect the things you already wrote before and 
submitted and combine them with this new stuff you're going to write. Then 
please combine it all in one email (easier for me to deal with then).

Gerard Beekmans

-*- If Linux doesn't have the solution, you have the wrong problem -*-
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