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From "Brett Porter (JIRA)" <>
Subject [jira] Updated: (MNG-935) Gentoo style pom dependencies
Date Fri, 15 Jun 2007 14:50:59 GMT


Brett Porter updated MNG-935:

    Component/s: Dependencies

> Gentoo style pom dependencies
> -----------------------------
>                 Key: MNG-935
>                 URL:
>             Project: Maven 2
>          Issue Type: Wish
>          Components: Dependencies
>         Environment: None appropriate
>            Reporter: Brian C. Dilley
>             Fix For: 2.1.x
> I'm a long time Gentoo Linux ( user, and i think that Maven could
adpot some idea's from gentoo's portage (
> Gentoo has a concept of "ebuilds" (which can be compared to poms).  An ebuild is an install
script of sorts for installing a particular piece of software.  An ebuild defines, among other
things, what it's dependencies (other ebuilds) are.  There are two types of dependencies:
optional and required.  A required depency is something that the software needs to be built
or run, while an optional depency is the exact opposite... it is optional at compile and run
time.  Basically an optional depency is a feature that the piece of sotware supports that
isn't necessary for it to function.
> There is also something in gentoo called "USE flags".  Use flags are a system scope set
of parameters that determine how ebuilds are built... and which features are included or excluded.
 For instance, "alsa" is a USE flag.  If your use flags have "alsa" in them then any application
that supports Alsa (Advanced Linux Sound Architecture) as an optional dependency will be compiled
with support for alsa.  Likewise, if your USE flags contain "-alsa" then anything that has
optional support for alsa will not be compiled with support for alsa.  I should also mention
that if a particular ebuild requires alsa... alsa will be built as well as it (because it
requires alsa at compile/run time)... but it and anything else that requires it will be the
only piece of software on the machine that has alsa support.  I should also note that Gentoo
has what is called "profiles".  Profiles contain (among other things) a default set of USE
flags for the general user, so in theory a Gentoo user doesn't have to modify their USE flags
> My thinking is that Maven could adopt this.   Poms could specify required and optional
dependencies,  and at a project level USE flags could be defined to filter what gets included
in a project. For instance someone using the Spring Framework may not be using Hibernate...
in their use flags "-hibernate" could be defined so that maven knows not to grab hibernate
(and all of it's dependencies) just because they want to use the spring MVC framework.

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