Why doesn't MacPorts handle switching between x11 and quartz better (was: Re: Inkscape 0.92.0 now available on MacPorts)

Michael keybounce at gmail.com
Sun Jan 8 18:02:05 CET 2017

> I completely understand why this is not happening. But a lesser goal would be in the category “I'm sorry, Dave, but I can't do that.” IOTW, when the dependencies of packages are in conflict, it is better to get an error message than an apparently successful build that doesn't work. This does happen with conflicting direct dependencies, does it not? If package A needs gtk2 +quartz and package B needs gtk2 +x11, you will not be able to install both A and B at the same time? (At least not without encountering numerous warnings and using -f to get past them.) But when these dependencies are indirect, life gets complicated, and the conflict hard or impossible to detect. (Though I am still not sure I quite understand why.)
> – Harald

I agree that a warning/error when an install would conflict would be nice. But I am confused about the underlying problem.

1. The X11 and Quartz versions of the "either/or" installs either place or use files at the same locations, and you cannot have two different files at the same place (well, you *CAN*, in some unix flavors; this is typically found in multiple machine OS's that have a hidden directory that looks like a file. Mac OS does not support this.)
2. But there are some ports that work with both flavors, and adapt -- so they have a way to use/provide both kinds of service (gtk I think was one of them) -- so some libraries can provide both services ... but one file?

Am I misunderstanding something here?


Beyond that, it sounds like the x11 vs quartz system would need to check all installed thingies that use one or the other, and give a warning if there are any of the wrong flavor installed, and either a "here's how to switch them all to this flavor" or "some cannot be switched to this flavor".


My big question: Why are two different API's -- the quartz and the x11 libraries -- being installed in the same location?!?

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