Re: A proposal for Midnight Commander

On Thu, 13 Nov 2003, Ali Akcaagac wrote:

> Well thats not the point. Compiling something statically does indeed
> work but reducing dependency is the better way imo.

If you care about dependencies so much, then please let me share my
experiences. I'm not really familiar in glib{,2} programming, I rather use
plain glibc calls. In the mean time, working on a linux distribution we
thought about putting some nice tools in the initrd that performs the
installation. We have strace and other nice debug tools there. MC would be
nice, too. But we didn't put mc there, and the reason was not glib.
(Actually, glib2 is already there since our installer uses gtk2, but we'd
simply put there glib2 if it wasn't there, no problem.)

I think glib2 is now a quite stanadrd piece of software, with plenty of
useful functions. Even if it changes faster than glibc, I'm sure that
there's always a big timeframe when obsoleted functions are still
available, and I'm quite sure that porting mc to a newer glib2 requires
less work than reimplementing all these nice features of glib2 in pure

If you think in dependencies: there's an uglier dependency of mc, namely
slang. My experiences show that mc compiled without slang (only ncurses)
has lot ot problems. IIRC even the developers say that compiling against
only ncurses is not recommended.

Ncurses ships a big terminfo database, but it's possible to compile some
terminfo entries hardwired into ncurses. We have the most common terminals
(linux, xterm, vt100 and screen) compiled into ncurses, this makes its
size bigger about 2kB or so, which is nothing. And then ncurses
applications perfectly work on these kinds of terminals without any
terminfo database. Slang, however, isn't able to hardcode some terminal
entries. So for a slang-mc to work properly, you must have the terminfo
entries installed. The whole terminfo database is nearly 6MB
(uncompressed). Either you split the terminfo package to terminfo-common
and terminfo-not-so-common and only install the first one on your minimal
system, or install the whole terminfo package and then remove files...
It's not the disk space required by the few really important entries of
terminfo that matters, but the fact that it's hard to manage it.

So IMHO there's absolutely nothing wrong with mc using glib. If there's
something else someone should work on, then IMHO it's either make mc
perfect without slang, or implement hardwired fallback terminfo entries in


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