Status: draft proposal evaluation

Last-Updated: 2020-08

Summary

Getting the .buildinfo files into the Debian archive has not yet happened, and it is one of the last infrastructure blockers for having full reproducible support in Debian.

Holger Levsen proposed in https://debconf20.debconf.org/talks/49-reproducing-bullseye-in-practice/ the possibility of bundling the .buildinfo files into the binary .deb archives, as a way to side step the deployment into the archive.

From the dpkg PoV while this seems like it could probably get implemented somehow, it also looks like the result might end up being impractical/cumbersome, more complex than needed, and backtracks on some of the design principles originally agreed on as good properties for the .buildinfo support (https://wiki.debian.org/ReproducibleBuilds/BuildinfoFiles). But it's still probably interesting to go through the pros and cons anyway, even if just for historical purposes.

Evaluation

While the proposal has definitely not really been fleshed out, we can still evaluate some possibilities.

Bundling the .buildinfo files inside the .deb archives would probably imply:

Some alternatives: