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[p2-dev] feature patches

Hi p2ers,

We (ECF) would like to release a new version of our bundles (ECF 3.2) on Feb 19...in order to make available our impl of OSGi 4.2 remote services [1] among some other new things. This release is something that a number of ECF consumers are waiting on and anticipating, and we want to make things available as soon as possible. We've had our review, etc.

To support the OSGi spec, however, some small additions to the ECF core bundles (i.e. org.eclipse.ecf and org.eclipse.ecf.identity) are required. These are truly additions...and do not affect backward compatibility.

The ECF/identity bundles are included in the set distributed with p2/Eclipse...to support file transfer. More specifically, these two bundles are part of the org.eclipse.equinox.p2.ui feature. Currently, the o.e.e.p2.ui feature includes a fully qualified version of ECF core in the feature, and unfortunately this means that we/ECF cannot update these bundles in our SDK, as p2 refuses to install a newer version of the ECF core bundle, given that the p2.ui feature specifies a particular version of ECF. Thomas Hallgren has opened this bug [2] so that this same problem can be avoided in the Helios release (thanks Thomas). We would highly appreciate having this bug addressed before Helios...so future difficulties can be avoided.

In order to get around this for our 3.2 release on Eclipse 3.5.X, we are thinking that we will produce a feature patch...to allow us to update our core/identity bundles to a recent version that includes the osgi remote services support. First: creating a feature patch seems like the easiest best way for us to allow ECF 3.2 to be installed on 3.5.X...but there may be other options possible...if so, please let us know.

Second: I have created a feature patch project, and have a question: Can the o.e.e.p2.user.ui feature version be specified as '0.0.0', so as to allow the use of a single feature patch for use with any version of o.e.e.p2.user..ui feature? Specifically, will this work (from feature.xml for the feature patch)?

<import feature="org.eclipse.equinox.p2.user.ui" version="0.0.0" patch="true"/>

Will this have the desired effect? (i.e. allowing a single feature patch to be used to update multiple versions of org.eclipse.equinox.p2.user.ui?). Is there some other acceptable version that will have the desired effect?



[1] http://eclipseecf.blogspot.com/2010/01/osgi-remote-services-from-ecf.html and ECF 3.2 project review: http://www.eclipse.org/projects/previous-release-reviews.php
[2] https://bugs.eclipse.org/bugs/show_bug.cgi?id=302877