Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 67760
RFE: provide debugging symbols in separate packages
Last modified: 2008-05-01 11:38:02 EDT
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Description of problem:
Absent a public build tree (and perhaps even in concert with one),
I propose the following:
I believe that providing debugging symbols for binary packages would result in
better bug reports from users, including more patches! I propose that packages
are built with -g (since this works with -O when using gcc) and the stripped
symbols are placed in separate RPM packages (foo-debug?). This could be done
automatically by rpm-build when it strips the binaries, with a separate package
created for each sub-package that contained object code (i.e., foo-debug,
Ideally, one would provide an "unstrip" facility (fenris has appropriated the
name "dress") in binutils, so that the user could recreate the unstripped
executable or library, and use their favorite debugger (gdb, ups, etc.). Before
replying "but you need the build tree anyway," let me add that (1) rpm -bp and
perhaps a "configure" is cheap, and (2) several debuggers have integrated
interpreters that handle the little stuff. It *is* necessary to make sure that
something reasonable is done with the file paths in the debugging info, though.
[I'd suggest unstripping allow relocation on the file paths.]
I would not expect RedHat to ship these packages to customers (except perhaps on
Advanced Server), as the size cost is likely to be prohibitive. But the
packages could readily be made available on RHN and the usual mirrors, as users
only need the packages that they intend to debug.
Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
Steps to Reproduce:
1. Find bug.
2. Get SRPM, hack spec file, wait minutes to hours (XFree86, gcc) to rebuild
unstripped. Worry that build environment is different.
3. Localize bug and create (often trivial and obvious) patch.
Actual Results: User doesn't bother to find and fix the bug.
Expected Results: Lots of small patches fixing thinkos.
This is mostly functional in rpm-4.1, completely
functional in rpm-4.2-0.10 packages.