[Rpm-maint] Removing repackage and (auto)rollback?

James Olin Oden james.oden at gmail.com
Tue Feb 19 16:15:04 UTC 2008

On Feb 19, 2008 3:45 AM, Panu Matilainen <pmatilai at redhat.com> wrote:
> Before anybody asks: I actually do think that ultimately rpm should be
> able to support reliably rolling back transactions. It's just that the
> current repackage+rollback combo fails to deliver it, as there's no way to
> undo script actions.
> So... I'm considering axing the rollback and related code out of rpm, two
> somewhat separate parts here:
> 1) Configurable repackaging of on-disk contents on erasure, manual
> rollback from cli. While not terribly intrusive, it's in my view an
> unsupportable feature because it fails to deliver reliable rollbacks and
> cannot be fixed (because of the fundamental issue with scriptlets
> doing things outside rpm's control).
> 2) Automatic rollback on failed transaction. Conceptually it's an awfully
> nice feature, but as it's based on 1) which is unreliable to begin with...
> To make matters worse, it's a feature that practically nobody uses, tests
> or works on (James Oden who wrote the feature is in "the other rpm" camp
> AFAIK) and which non-trivially complicates the transaction code for a
> practically unused (and unusable) feature.
You would be wrong.  I'm in no RPM camp at the moment.  If I was
working on RPM I would have approached you guys about continued
Honestly, though, rpm is the wrong place to do rollbacks.  You want to
really have a reliable upgrade rollback you need to do it at the
filesystem level.  Things are not quite there at present in linux to
really support this but there much closer than they ever were.

> Me thinks it'd be more productive to investigate related items that could
> be reliably implemented than attempt to "fix" what's fundamentally
> broken...
The fix is not in rpm.  You will never be able to undo opaque
scriptlets in a provably reliable way within the package manager.
Its just not possible.

> Thoughts?
>         - Panu -
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