fdisk becoming non-essential, dependencies needed.

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fdisk becoming non-essential, dependencies needed.

Andreas Henriksson-3
Hello,

A new version 2.29.2-3 of src:util-linux was recently uploaded to
experimental[1]. The plan is to ship those changes in Buster.

In this version the fdisk, sfdisk and cfdisk utilities has been split
out into a separate 'fdisk' package. Any package that needs these
utilities should add a dependency on the fdisk package in Buster!
(Attempts will be made to track down and file bug reports, but
ultimately maintainers need to take the final responsibility for the
dependency being added before the Buster freeze.)

Your new dependency declaration might look like this:
        fdisk | util-linux (<< 2.29.2-3~)
See also the util-linux NEWS entry[2].

Currently (for Buster) the fdisk package is being made
'pseudo-essential' via a dependency from the Essential util-linux
package, where the tools was split out from. (This is also to support
upgrades from Stretch to Buster.)
The plan is to drop this dependency (making fdisk no longer
pseudo-essential) for Buster+1 (Bullseye). The Priority field will
likely be set to important so fdisk utilities will still be part of any
normal installation, but will then be deinstallable.

The reason for this split is to decrease the size of the Essential set.
Once fdisk is deinstallable so should libfdisk1 and libncursesw5 also
be. This helps keep the size of minimal chroots down, not to mention
people might prefer other partitioning tools like parted, etc.
Unfortunately the package will not be easily deinstallable for Buster,
but eager minds might be able to use equivs to create an empty fdisk
package to satisfy the transitional dependency while waiting for
Bullseye.

For extra gold star please read up on fdisk/libfdisk1 enhancements like
supporting GPT (since Jessie), etc. Make sure to stop using any C/H/S-
adressing (on command line or elsewhere) since it's deprecated[4].

Regards,
Andreas Henriksson

PS. See also 'mount' package NEWS[3] for similar changes. Strict
dependencies should be added where needed.

[1]: https://tracker.debian.org/news/861509
[2]: https://anonscm.debian.org/cgit/collab-maint/pkg-util-linux.git/commit/?id=3114bfedb044fab22b0a865f6c2fae85b1207677
[3]: https://anonscm.debian.org/cgit/collab-maint/pkg-util-linux.git/commit/?id=c650149427862a7b3dfcbdf2355308d042d39629
[4]: http://sources.debian.net/src/util-linux/2.29.2-2/Documentation/deprecated.txt/


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