Bug#931951: lintian: False positive: command-in-sbin-has-manpage-in-incorrect-section for symlinks in sbin

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Bug#931951: lintian: False positive: command-in-sbin-has-manpage-in-incorrect-section for symlinks in sbin

Francesco Poli (wintermute)
Package: lintian
Version: 2.16.0
Severity: normal

Hello,
I have been bitten by a Lintian check false positive on my package
(apt-listbugs):
command-in-sbin-has-manpage-in-incorrect-section

My package indeed ships "/usr/sbin/apt-listbugs" and the man page
is indeed in section 1 ("/usr/share/man/man1/apt-listbugs.1.gz").

But "/usr/sbin/apt-listbugs" is actually a symlink to
"/usr/bin/apt-listbugs":

  $ ls -altrF /usr/*bin/apt-listbugs
  lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root    19 Apr 22 16:23 /usr/sbin/apt-listbugs -> ../bin/apt-listbugs*
  -rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 22111 Apr 22 16:23 /usr/bin/apt-listbugs*


The reason is that, a long time ago, the package used to only ship
"/usr/sbin/apt-listbugs"; at a certain point, it was decided to move
the program to "/usr/bin/", since some of its operating modes
are useful to non-privileged users, too.
However, a number of users could have created custom scripts which
invoke "/usr/sbin/apt-listbugs": in order to avoid gratuitously
breaking all those scripts, it was decided to keep the program
in both "/usr/sbin" and "/usr/bin", with one path being a symlink to
the other.

I think the Lintian complaint is a false positive. Lintian should
look whether the "/usr/sbin/$file" is actually a symlink (to
"/usr/bin/$file") and refrain from emitting the complaint, if this
is the case.

I hope this bug may be fixed soon.

Thanks for your time.
Bye!


-- System Information:
Debian Release: 10.0
  APT prefers testing
  APT policy: (800, 'testing'), (500, 'unstable')
Architecture: amd64 (x86_64)

Kernel: Linux 4.19.0-5-amd64 (SMP w/4 CPU cores)
Locale: LANG=en_US.UTF-8, LC_CTYPE=en_US.UTF-8 (charmap=UTF-8), LANGUAGE=en_US:en (charmap=UTF-8)
Shell: /bin/sh linked to /bin/dash
Init: systemd (via /run/systemd/system)
LSM: AppArmor: enabled

Versions of packages lintian depends on:
ii  binutils                       2.31.1-16
ii  bzip2                          1.0.6-9.1
ii  diffstat                       1.62-1
ii  dpkg                           1.19.7
ii  dpkg-dev                       1.19.7
ii  file                           1:5.35-4
ii  gettext                        0.19.8.1-9
ii  gpg                            2.2.13-2
ii  intltool-debian                0.35.0+20060710.5
ii  libapt-pkg-perl                0.1.36+b1
ii  libarchive-zip-perl            1.64-1
ii  libcapture-tiny-perl           0.48-1
ii  libcgi-pm-perl                 4.40-1
ii  libclass-accessor-perl         0.51-1
ii  libclone-perl                  0.41-1+b1
pn  libdigest-sha-perl             <none>
ii  libdpkg-perl                   1.19.7
ii  libemail-valid-perl            1.202-1
ii  libfile-basedir-perl           0.08-1
ii  libio-async-perl               0.72-1
ii  libipc-run-perl                20180523.0-1
ii  liblist-compare-perl           0.53-1
ii  liblist-moreutils-perl         0.416-1+b4
ii  libparse-debianchangelog-perl  1.2.0-13
ii  libpath-tiny-perl              0.108-1
ii  libtext-levenshtein-perl       0.13-1
ii  libtimedate-perl               2.3000-2
ii  libtry-tiny-perl               0.30-1
ii  liburi-perl                    1.76-1
ii  libxml-simple-perl             2.25-1
ii  libyaml-libyaml-perl           0.76+repack-1
ii  man-db                         2.8.5-2
ii  patchutils                     0.3.4-2
ii  perl                           5.28.1-6
ii  t1utils                        1.41-3
ii  xz-utils                       5.2.4-1

Versions of packages lintian recommends:
ii  libperlio-gzip-perl  0.19-1+b5

Versions of packages lintian suggests:
pn  binutils-multiarch     <none>
ii  libhtml-parser-perl    3.72-3+b3
ii  libtext-template-perl  1.55-1

-- no debconf information