Providing a mysql connector extension on Linux that works independently of system mysql library versions - a pipe dream ?

Enrico Weigelt enrico.weigelt at
Sat Mar 31 13:31:44 PDT 2012


> Whilst I understand all you have said, and agree with it within the
> confines of using a distro oriented and provided solution, you are
> failing to take into account both the past and current demand.

No, I'm not failing, but ignoring that on purpose. See:

> The past : Sun and then Oracle, produced and provided a distrib
> independent version of the connector to go with their version of
> - the people who downloaded the official versions of OOo
> from Sun/Oracle could then be sure that the mysql connector would be
> provided and would work. 

This is was a stupid idea in the first place. It never has been distro
independent, just ignoring the whole purpose of distros at all. The only
way that it ever can work half-reliable is expecting that the user has
*their* prebuilt binaries, and bundle all the 3rdparty libraries with
the matching ABI.

Just look at their history, look at how ugly eg. Oracle RMBS is packaged,
they never really understood the whole concept of distros and opensource
at all.

I simply *refuse* to accept their stupidity as an valid technical argument,
because I want good software quality.

> Today that is no longer the case, not even Apache has the connector code
> in its repo, as it was not part of the Oracle Software Grant. This means
> that unless some kind soul within the AOOo community does the work and
> provides the connector there will be none for those people that continue
> to use OOo

Just ignore the precompiled binaries and et the distros handle building
and packaging.

root at excalibur:/var/lib/dpkg/info# aptitude search libreoffice | grep mysql
p   libreoffice-mysql-connector     - MySQL Connector extension for LibreOffice 

> The present : people want/need a mysql connector (which also happens
> to work with MariaDB according to reports I've received) to go with
> their official download versions that they get from TDF.


> This is the only way they can use new stable versions of LO which are
> updated far more quickly than any of the distros currently provide, at
> least to my knowledge. 

If you want a stable system, choose a proper distros and take what they
provide. Otherwise you find yourself faster and deeper in the package
maintainer role as you expect.

In case your distros doesnt keep up with upstream fast enough, just jump
into the package manager role explicitly and do it right, provide upgraded
packages for your distro, through the distros build/packaging machinery.

> However, if no generic connector can be built, as Sun/Oracle used to do,
> then the whole ecosystem relies on someone being able to build for each
> distro out there.

Well, as it always has been, for all thousands of thousands of packages.
Trying to take binary packages from distro to another always has been
a russian roulette, because there never was such thing like an stricly
defined ABI (including virtually all libraries that somebody might require).

> As you correctly state, "why bother", when the distros do it (eventually,
> sometimes even several months after the latest official stable release is
> made). The reason is that there is a demand. 

The demand is always coming from scopes of specific distros. Feel free
to provide updated packages for these distros.

> You may not see it, but I see it, it crops up fairly frequently on the
> user lists (both in French and English) and similar questions have been
> raised on the Extensions site in response to my posting the Mac and Linux
> 32bit extensions up for download.

Yes, because the whole approach of trying to provide distro-independent
is simply doomed to fail, as soon as shared libraries that cannot
guarantee long-term ABI compatibility are involved. 

You're fighting against windmills.

> Note that I am not going to flog a dead horse, but when I do QA on
> the database module, I do it with a mysql connection on the whole and
> with the native connector. If the connector that my distrib provides no
> longer works with the stable versions or RCs that I test out, then I
> can no longer do that QA work and in the end I will give up, or else I
> will just build it for myself and test it when I get the time or the
> inclination. 

QA an only work in the context of an specific distro. Actually, this
is what distros are for.

> That of course is just my personal viewpoint, but one should not ignore
> that other, more "normal" users, who are consumers of the system, expect
> a solution to be provided for something they used to have which "just
> worked" with their official version of OOo/LO and no longer does.

By "official version" you mean the precompiled binaries ?
Well, it just was a matter of luck that they worked.

Actually, when I last tried on my Gentoo systems, they did *not* work.

"Normal users", that want a system that "just works", should choose
a proper distro for that.


More information about the LibreOffice mailing list