man-db cron job returns dpkg-query errors about version strings

Bug #783903 reported by Lee Maguire on 2011-05-17
This bug affects 1 person
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
man-db (Ubuntu)
Colin Watson

Bug Description

Binary package hint: man-db

I have apt sources where the Version string for packages starts with a letter. As a result I get a daily email from cron on each server containing multiple lines that look like:

  dpkg-query: warning: parsing file '/var/lib/dpkg/available' near line 179 package 'linux-headers-':
   error in Version string 'example-20081020-1': version number does not start with digit

Which is the stderr output of the command "dpkg-query -W -f '${Version}' dpkg"

The naming of the packages is not withing my control, and indeed the Debian policy manual suggests that upstream_version strings starting with non-digit alphanumerics is valid.

I would suggest that stderr from dpkg-query be supressed for the query on the cron job
   "dpkg-query -W -f '${Version}' dpkg 2>/dev/null"

If you feel this is an error of dpkg-query rather than man-db, please reassign to dpkg.

Version: 2.5.9-4

Related branches

Lee Maguire (leemaguire) wrote :

 Just to add the note: the debian policy notes the version "should start with a digit" (rather than "must") so it's a valid warning from dpkg-query.

Colin Watson (cjwatson) wrote :

Thanks; I've made this tweak for my next Debian upload.

Changed in man-db (Ubuntu):
assignee: nobody → Colin Watson (cjwatson)
importance: Undecided → Low
status: New → Fix Committed
Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

This bug was fixed in the package man-db -

man-db ( unstable; urgency=low

  * Discard stderr from dpkg-query in cron jobs (LP: #783903).
  * Make man-db Multi-Arch: foreign.
  * Upgrade to debhelper v9 and its new arrangements for honouring
    dpkg-buildflags output.

 -- Colin Watson <email address hidden> Wed, 09 Nov 2011 01:33:33 +0000

Changed in man-db (Ubuntu):
status: Fix Committed → Fix Released
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