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Periodically, Fink releases a "binary distribution" or "point distribution", traditionally numbered according to the Darwin version number. This consists of several things:

  • a source release from which fink can be bootstrapped, which includes all of the packages in the distribution (such as fink-full-10.5-0.9.0.tar.gz)
  • a release of a tarball of all the .info files from the distribution (such as dists-10.5-0.9.0.tar.gz)
  • periodic subsequent releases of tarballs of .info files from updates to the distribution (such as dists-10.5-
  • binary .deb files for pre-compiled versions of all of the packages in the distribution, for all currently-supported architectures
  • periodic updates to the set of binary .deb files, as needed (in conjunction with updates such as dists-10.5-
  • binary installers for the distribution (such as Fink-0.9.0-Intel-Installer.dmg and Fink-0.9.0-PowerPC-Installer.dmg

Fink makes pre-compiled versions of its "stable" packages available for automatic installation (when the package license permits). Many of these packages were released under the Gnu Public License (GPL), and the Fink project takes its obligations under the GPL quite seriously. See Archive Browser for more information.

Here are a few tips for the Fink Developer team:

  • the set of .info files in a distribution should be tagged with a cvs tag such as release_0_9_0
  • the set of .info files in the updates to a distribution should be tagged with a cvs tag such as release_0_9_0_1; these updates should be cumulative, so that release_0_9_0_2 contains everything from release_0_9_0_1 plus additional updates. (The pdb must be configured to grab both of these cvs tags and get fink to merge their contents when indexing them.)
  • note that any of these tagged distributions must include the files ,DISTRIBUTION, VERSION, README, and stamp-cvs-live, and must also include at least one .info file (in the appropriate heierarchy). The tarball-rolling script scripts/srcdist/ will replace stamp-cvs-live with stamp-rel-$version.
  • the VERSION file in an update release such as release_0_9_0_1 should still contain the string 0.9.0-cvs, not reflecting the update. The tarball-rolling script scripts/srcdist/ will insert the correct value for users obtaining (and injecting) the tarball.