I often have a bunch of somewhat crazy ideas, and I don’t have any time available to test or implement them, which is sad. So just in case these crazy ideas would scratch someone’s itch, I’m going to throw them in the wild.
I’ve been using git for a few months, now, and used it not only for source code management, but for efficient storage, too. *VERY* efficient. I’ll have to write about that some day.
Anyways, while installing pristine-tar, today, I just thought it would be neat to have an equivalent pristine-deb, to store deb files efficiently. I’m pretty sure someone else thought about this possibility, but it’s still better that such ideas come to the ears (eyes, actually) of someone that could implement them.
Such a pristine-deb tool could be used to… store packages from snapshot.debian.net. That would reduce the amount of space required for the archive dramatically, IMHO. I’m pretty sure old packages are not requested that much, so they could be generated on-the-fly from a CGI script placed as a GET action, so that urls wouldn’t change.
The same could probably be applied to archive.debian.org. It could even save enough space that archive.debian.org could host snapshot.debian.net. But that depends on the average package content and its average evolution, which I have absolutely no idea about.
Update: It would also be interesting to have the .diff.gz files in there, too ; it would obviously allow to have an easy view of the contents, such as copyright files, changelogs, and other bits of information available on packages.debian.org.
Update 2: Actually, pristine-deb would as easy as storing 2 pristine-tars (one for control.tar.gz and one for data.tar.gz), and a debian-binary file. The .deb can be aggregated with
ar -rc file.deb debian-binary control.tar.gz data.tar.gz
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