Web lists-archives.com

Re: Tell me about your salsa experience

[ I know, it month and half late ]
[ I did my best to recover thread. Sorry, If I failed. ]

[ Please, CC me if you want me to reply. I'm not subscribed to debian-devel@ ]

[ Alexander Wirt ]
> Thats where you come in, please tell me how tools like salsa, alioth,
> git, tracker and so on changed to way you work. I want to know
> everything, the good, the bad and so on.

Glad you asked. So I have excuse for stating my opinion, which is quite

Summary: Introduction of salsa is nothing short of disaster.

I started working with Debian in mid-2014, when all code lived on
alioth. The best thing about alioth is that I did not interact with it.

Alioth did not get in my way. I had ssh access to alioth.debian.org, all
operations was simple and intuitive. I had choice of VCS to use, git
hooks were easy to setup, every chore was easy to script. I participated
in two teams -- Haskell and Emacs. Everything was smooth, it is just
matter of file permissions.

Maybe developers, who granted me access to teams, had to deal with
something more terrible I can imagine. Maybe administering Alioth for
DSA team was nightmare. No idea, I am telling about my experience.

And then came yet another tragic day for Debian, and Gitlab replaced
alioth.debian.org. It brought pain, inconvenience and friction.

  Performing basic operations with repository now either impossible
  (salsa forces foo/bar naming, instead of flexibility of proper
  filesystem on Alioth), or requires learning new useless stuff.

  There is no longer proper git hooks.

  Other version control systems are gone.

In an instant, I became second-class citizen, now everything --
documentation, processes, defaults -- everything is optimized for
running "modern" browser and pushing buttons. Scriptability is pain.

That is not all, folks. Salsa brought own issue tracker and concept of
pull-request. So now I can't just mail a patch with reportbug(1) --
there are chances, that maintainer will either ignore it, because he
only follows salsa issue tracker, or that he will ask you to make a
pull-request on salsa.

git was step forward from svn/cvs -- now we can work on our version
control system offline. Salsa issue tracker is a same step backward from
debbugs -- it disables offline working with bugs.

To be fair, there is very minor positive thing in salsa -- Gitlab CI.
Its usefulness is limited, since there is no API to capture output in
real time, so I still have to use sbuild on my local machine, but
ability to rebuild package once in a week and get email on failure is
good thing to prevent package rot.

I know, Alioth was unmaintained, but just having box with sudo rules
about adduser/usermod and Apache, running cgit would be much better
replacement. Well, this ship sailed; I have been writing scripts to deal
with madness around for a while, and it seems I will have to continue to
do so.
        Note, that I send and fetch email in batch, once every 24 hours.
                 If matter is urgent, try https://t.me/kaction

Attachment: pgpR8t9gsZIcE.pgp
Description: PGP signature