3

From http://opensourcehacker.com/2013/03/20/how-to-backport-packages-on-ubuntu-linux/

backportpackage will

  • download the latest version of the package from Ubuntu archives. The latest version must exist in the some newer Ubuntu releases – backporting process does not consider upstream releases
  • attempts to build it
  • uploads the resulting .deb to your personal PPA archive on launchpad.net

Why is that "backporting process does not consider upstream releases"? What is the advantage of backporting considering downstream release instead of upstream ones?

By "upstream releases", does it mean the raw (not for a particular Ubuntu release) source code release from the original author of the package, available from the package's website maintained by the original author?

To do backporting, is it necessary to create an account on launchpad.net and create a PGP key, as said in the link?

  • Tim, I don't know what "downstream release" means. Please clarify or remove the term. – Faheem Mitha Oct 19 '14 at 14:01
  • "By 'upstream releases', does it mean the raw (not for a particular Ubuntu release) source code release from the original author of the package?" -> Yes, or a patched version descended from it; the furthest upstream you can get is the original source. – goldilocks Oct 19 '14 at 14:08
  • 1
    Tim - do me a favor, when you post your Q's please don't add the word "Thanks" to the end. I'm getting tired of editing that out. 8-) – slm Oct 19 '14 at 15:48
3

The term backporting means (by definition) rebuilding existing packaging on an earlier version of the system.

Why is that "backporting process does not consider upstream releases"?

Packaging a previously unpackaged software release is not backporting.

What is the advantage of downstream release over upstream ones for backporting?

I'm not sure what you mean. What do you mean by the terms "downstream release" and "upstream release"? Normally a release is a term used only by upstream. A packager does not make a release, he/she only packages it. In the link, the term "upstream release" is used. This means the release of the software, and there the word "upstream" is redundant and is probably used for emphasis. The term "Ubuntu release" is also used. This means a release of the Ubuntu distribution. That is an aggregate term, referring to the packaging and distribution of a large number of software packages at once as part of the release of a new version of an operating system. Packaging a single piece of software is not normally termed a release.

Perhaps you are asking, why not package a new release directly, rather than backporting an already packaged release. The answer should be clear: this typically involves less work, since some of the work has already been done for you by the packager. Having said that, it is often possible to reuse packaging for older versions of software with newer, previously unpackaged versions.

By "upstream releases", does it mean the raw (not for a particular Ubuntu release) source code release from the original author of the package, available from the package's website maintained by the original author?

Yes, of course.

To do backporting, is it necessary to create an account on launchpad.net and create a PGP key, as said in the link?

No, of course it is not necessary. You can do anything that you could do on Launchpad on your own computer, modulo hardware constraints. Lanchpad does not have magical powers.

See the tag for further information.

  • Thanks. What is "what you describe"? Do you mean the link calls a concept which is not backporting as "backporting"? Shall I follow the link to do backporting, or how do you do backporting then? – Tim Oct 19 '14 at 13:32
  • @Tim I've reworded to hopefully make the answer clearer. – Faheem Mitha Oct 19 '14 at 13:45
  • Thanks. (1) by "What is the advantage of downstream release over upstream ones for backporting", I mean What is the advantage of backporting considering downstream release instead of upstream ones? (2) what do "unpackaged" and "packaged" mean in "unpackaged software release" and "packaged software release"? Also what does "A packager does not make a release" mean? (3) To do backporting you recommended in my last post, is it necessary to create an account on lauchpad.net and create a PGP key, as said in the link? – Tim Oct 19 '14 at 13:56
  • @Tim I suggest you reword your question to include all of that. – Faheem Mitha Oct 19 '14 at 13:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.