[arch-dev-public] [arch-general] The Final Cleanup

Alexander Rødseth rodseth at gmail.com
Mon Dec 9 05:52:19 EST 2013

Hi Gaetan,

Normally, only --pkgname and --pkgdesc are needed. The
sage-mathematics PKGBUILD is an extreme example. Compare with other
PKGBUILDs that uses gendesk for a more balanced picture.

Thanks for the new arguments, though, I added them to the list of
arguments for/against gendesk:

Here are the arguments for generating the .desktop files with a tool
like "gendesk":

* There is much duplication of code by having one .desktop file per
(GUI) package.
* If the .desktop specification should change in the future, there is
only one tool that has to be changed, not bazillions of little
.desktop files.
* If there should be alternative ways of providing desktop shortcuts
in the future, possibly for other desktop environments, the transition
will be easier.
* It's more elegant than including manually crafted files everywhere.
* It provides one consistent look of .desktop files and avoids
problems (for instance, one hand crafted (or upstream provided?)
.desktop file used Terminal=1 instead of Terminal=true, which caused
problems). Generated files are consistent, which avoids problems.
* gendesk is already being used for several packages (and has been
used for a while), and it seems to work fine.
* Many files are generating during the prepare or build process.
.desktop files should be generated too.
* "I've just tried gendesk and it's pretty neat actually."
* Removes complexity from the package, since fewer files are needed.

Here are the arguments against generating the .desktop files with a
tool like "gendesk":

* It is just like including base64 encoded files directly in the
PKGBUILD. (No, it's not. Contrast with other build-time generated
* Current .desktop files should be left as they are.
* Generating the .desktop files does not make the packages more
"vanilla". (.desktop files are inherently non-vanilla, though).
* It takes a bit of work to create a package in the first place.
Adding a .desktop file or not won't make a difference in the overall
* The functionality should rather be in makepkg..
* The maintainer still needs to relate to .desktop files one way or the other.
* Using gendesk relies on a tool to do what can be done just as easily by hand.
* This adds more complexity to the prepare() function.
* This adds an extra makedepends (Only a small build-time dependency,
though. Most users will never see this).

- Alexander / xyproto

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