MacPorts Status

Jim DeLaHunt list+macports-dev at
Sun Jun 12 00:13:28 UTC 2022

On 2022-06-11 13:53, Michele Venturi wrote:
> That's what I said, no coherence or coordination.

Actually, I think that what I said (below) is much different than "no 
coherence or coordination". I disagree with that opinion.

> So what are your reasons to not use HomeBrew?
> > On Sat, Jun 11, 2022, 22:40 Jim DeLaHunt <list+macports-dev at
> <mailto:list%2Bmacports-dev at>> wrote:
>     Hello, Jordan:
>     Welcome (back to) MacPorts!
>     I am nobody official with the project. I just try to make contributions
>     to a few ports and documentation pages where I can. But in this
>     project,
>     lots of people contribute, each in their own way.
>     On 2022-06-11 07:07, Jordan via macports-dev wrote:
>      > Hi friends,
>      >
>      >
>      > First of all thank you for your work! I use MacPorts exclusively
>     for a
>      > few different reasons and am looking to contribute to the project....
>     I for one would be glad to have your contributions.
>      > There is one aspect of MacPorts that has me a little down in the
>     dumps
>      > and that's is its _apparent_ (but likely not true) neglected
>     state. I
>      > think it's perhaps under maintained currently due to a lack of
>      > people-power? I say so because I'd love to see more people using
>      > MacPorts so I wonder if there's any "modernisation" (for lack of a
>      > better word) to be had here? ... so perhaps some usage compared to
>      > things like Homebrew can be gained back since I'd love to see this
>      > project used more.
>     I think it is not fair to say MacPorts overall is in a neglected state.
>     Its core purpose is to help people compile a wide range of freely
>     available software on the macOS platform. As part of that it helps
>     gather the related software needed to make the requested software work.
>     I think that this aspect of MacPorts works very well. It gets a lot of
>     care and attention. There is a lot of activity. For instance, I just
>     moved onto an M1 Mac, and I see a lot of support for compiling software
>     with the M1 CPU's architecture. That is the opposite of neglect.
>     Now, certain aspects of the project are neglected.  You mention the
>     timeline on Trac. That's a page of documentation.
>     When you say "modernisation", I think you mean, changes to how MacPorts
>     work to make it easier or better for some audience. I think that is
>     best
>     approached as a collection of small projects, each with a specific
>     understanding of a problem, and its own goal for an improvement. One
>     way
>     to proceed is to start a macPorts-dev thread for each of these ideas
>     (and each with a different Subject: line, please).
>     You mention believing that `sudo` probably scares new users. Maybe so,
>     maybe not. A first step is to gather some evidence whether this is
>     true.
>     A next step is to figure out why the port tool requires use of
>     `sudo`. A
>     third step is to figure out what alternative way the port tool could
>     work which does not require `sudo`.  For my part, use of `sudo` is no
>     problem at all. MacPorts is a command-line tool for system maintenance.
>     I am used to system maintenance tools requiring administrator
>     passwords.
>     `sudo` is a command-line way of requiring a password.
>     I will also say that competing with Homebrew about which project has
>     more users is not very interesting to me. Homebrew works well for some
>     people. MacPorts works well for some people. I'm interested in helping
>     MacPorts be the best MacPorts it can be. If Homebrew ends up with more
>     users, that is no big deal to me.
>      > Also, as a tacked-on issue I am working on...
>     I suggest you start a separate email thread for each issue. If you try
>     to discuss deleting files on uninstall as part of a thread with the
>     Subject: of "MacPorts status", which was originally about your offer to
>     help, I suspect you will lose a lot of readers.
>     Anyhow, I look forward to seeing you in the email list, and in the trac
>     tickets, and in the Pull Requests!  Glad to have your help.
>     Best regards,
>           —-Jim "just another MacPorts user/contributor" DeLaHunt

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