DevHeads.net

Proposal: Abandon v8 package

I made the original v8 Fedora package many moons ago, when I was more
optimistic about the possibility of separating the useful components
inside of chromium. Since that point, it has become clear that while v8
is useful software, the following facts are also true:

1. The v8 upstream is entirely disinterested in the concept of
maintaining any sort of ABI/API consistency between releases.
2. The v8 that is used in chromium is not necessarily compatible with
the upstream v8, as they have a history of picking and choosing code
changes (and even applying chromium specific changes locally).
3. Virtually all consumers of v8 (including chromium) take a git
checkout (not a specific one, just whatever they decided to code to) and
use that revision, often creating a local fork of v8 from that revision,
as they are either unwilling or unable to track v8 upstream.
4. Since v8 has no concept of a "stable" release that I can see, they
simply do security fixes to the master branch, which, combined with the
code changing violently, makes it very difficult to backport security fixes.

This means that other than plv8 (which is currently unable to build
against the current v8 package in Fedora), I do not see any consumers of
the Fedora v8 package (chromium has long since abandoned any possibility
of using it). It does contain a "d8" binary, which is a javascript CLI
debugger, but it is not clear to me that this is widely used, or that
the benefit of its inclusion in Fedora outweighs the pain of maintaining
this package.

Thus, I propose that the v8 package be abandoned/orphaned/taken to the
farm upstate to run and play with the other dogs.

If you disagree, or are crazy enough to want to take it over, speak now.

~tom

P.S. I'll still maintain v8-314 as best I can, since there are actually
users of that. The irony of that really ancient version being considered
stable (and thus, used by other software) as a result of Fedora sticking
on that version of v8 for so many releases is not lost on me.

Comments

Re: Proposal: Abandon v8 package

By Eamon Walsh at 06/11/2018 - 12:01

On 6/11/2018 10:42 AM, Tom Callaway wrote:

My packages in COPR depend on libv8 but I can just bundle it so it's not
a problem. Thanks for maintaining it to this point.

Re: Proposal: Abandon v8 package

By Stephen Gallagher at 06/11/2018 - 10:45

For all of these same reasons, the Node.js SIG opted to carry a bundled
copy of v8 in that package as well. I think we should move to have v8
considered to be a copylib for all reasonable purposes within Fedora.