[TZInfo-users] Ruby and timezones
Roberto C. Sánchez
roberto at connexer.com
Fri Oct 31 13:45:17 EDT 2008
First let me apologize for the length of this mail. However, there are
a number of issues and I want to make sure I do not leave out anything.
A while back I was engaged to package Active Record and Active Support
into libactiverecord-ruby and libactivesupport-ruby for Debian and
Ubuntu. At the time I created the initial packages, I noticed that
Active Support shipped a vendor directory containing builder,
memcache-client, tzinfo, and xml-simple. The builder and xml-simple
were already packaged for Debian. The other two were not, so I went
ahead and used the embedded sources from within libactiverecord-ruby, as
that is how it was shipped.
Later on, I realized that it would be better to package tzinfo and
memcache-client into separate Debian packages, as using embedded sources
is generally frowned upon in Debian. So, I created the libtzinfo-ruby
and libmemcache-client-ruby packages.
Right after the libtzinfo-ruby package was accepted, bug #503591  was
filed in the Debian BTS. The bug's title is "Please don't include yet
another copy of tzdata in the archive". So, I am emailing you, the
authors of tzinfo, ruby-tzfile, and activesupport, to see if there is a
way that we can make this work so that activesupport can remain in
Debian. (ruby-tzfile was recommended as a possibility by a user who
sent a follow-up message to #503591)
Here are three options:
1. Modify libactivesupport-ruby to use ruby-tzfile
- Requires packaging ruby-tzfile into Debian (which I would do)
- Requires modifying libactivesupport-ruby (could this be done
2. Modify libactivesupport-ruby to use ruby-tzfile or tzinfo (depending
on which is installed).
- Same issues as above
3. Modify tzinfo to no longer embed the zone data and use the data from
- Requires modifying libtzinfo-ruby (could this be done upstream?)
- May have impacts on other platforms at which tzinfo is targeted
that do not ship zoneinfo (is this why the zone data are shipped
In any event, it is important to either remove libtzinfo-ruby's zone
data files from Debian (or remove libtzinfo-ruby entirely). However,
people are using libactivesupport-ruby in Debian and I would hate to see
libactivesupport-ruby removed on account having to remove
libtzinfo-ruby. So, one of libtzinfo-ruby or libactivesupport-ruby will
need to be modified.
Roberto C. Sánchez
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