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  • IRAF Development Roadmap Available
  • Authored by: olebole on Thursday, May 01 2014 @ 03:11 PM GMT
Hi Mike,

I am writing you on behalf of the Debian Astronomy working group.

One topic that isn't covered by your plan yet is a better support of (Linux) distributions yet. Currently, it is very difficult for us packagers to create an IRAF package that can be delivered as part of a distribution. From a Debian point of view, this has the following reasons:

* IRAF contains a number of convienience copies of other packages (like cfitsio, curl, readline, f2c, xmlrpc) which needs to be sorted out. It would be nice to support system-installed packages here as well (maybe as a configuration option).

* newer file system standards distinguish between system-dependent files (which go into /usr/lib, or /usr/lib/<arch> on Debian) and system independent files (which are in /usr/share). I have some patches which put everything on the right place; however it would be nice if IRAF could do this from scratch.

* There are a number of compiled files that have no source; mainly in the VO package. I am not sure whether they are all GPL; otherwise they can't be linked to IRAF (because of IRAFs license)

* it would be nice to have an automated unit test than can be used to check if everything works.

(and I probably forgot a number of things here...)

Many of these problems do not only concern Debian, but Fedora Linux seems to have similar problems as well (as stated on their mailing list).

Having IRAF packaged for the system has a number of advantages for the users; the main is that he automatically gets updates over the same channel as for the rest of his system.

If you like, we can discuss every of these items in more detail, and I can explain the motivation behind them. I know that it is not so visible, but it would help many people in installing and using IRAF.

Best regards


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