how to stop variants from propagating down to dependencies

Ryan Schmidt ryandesign at
Tue Dec 31 22:57:25 UTC 2019

On Dec 31, 2019, at 09:37, Daniel J. Luke wrote:

> On Dec 31, 2019, at 10:34 AM, Ken Cunningham wrote:
>> On 2019-12-31, at 7:26 AM, Daniel J. Luke wrote:
>>>> Except that would get the rdeps of openal-soft with its default variants, rather than with the +gui and +tests variants.
>>> That's what I understood Ken was trying to do.

No, he said he wanted to install openal-soft with the variants +gui +tests and he did not want those variants passed down to uninstalled dependencies, but that is what MacPorts will do.

Normally openal-soft does not have a dependency on qt5-qtbase but with the +gui variant it does.

qt5-qtbase has a +tests variant.

Ken doesn't want MacPorts to install qt5-qtbase with the +tests variant, but in his scenario it will.

>> There is just no good way to fix this -- unless we were to decide that a certain set of named variants, like "tests" or "docs" or "gui" , would not be propagated down. Or conversely that only a certain set of named variants are propagated down (like "universal" and -- any others?).
>> Probably too much trouble.
> I think it is - in my mind the correct solution is to just avoid the use of variants wherever it's reasonable.

Agreed. A variant with a name "gui" suggests to me that it will install a GUI in addition to whatever else the port will install. A variant named "docs" suggests to me that it will install additional documentation. In either case, it is a better user experience for those to be implemented as subports rather than as variants.

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