[OE-core] The state of reproducible Builds

Joshua Watt jpewhacker at gmail.com
Tue Jul 2 00:57:20 UTC 2019

On Mon, Jul 1, 2019, 7:43 PM Douglas Royds <douglas.royds at taitradio.com>

> On 2/07/19 3:58 AM, Joshua Watt wrote:
> > 1. Testing RPM and IPK package formats. I think RPMs will be pretty
> > easy; IPKs might be more challenging since AFAIK the tools that make
> > them don't generate reproducible output to begin with.
> This has not been my experience. I have been building reproducible ipks,
> indeed, it is the hashsums of the ipks that I've been examining. In most
> cases, the correct SOURCE_DATE_EPOCH is enough, but there have been
> cases where I've had to correct upstream projects to cope with the
> SOURCE_DATE_EPOCH or avoid the effect of differing uname settings.

Ah, fair enough. I must have misremembered something.

> > 1. HOSTTOOLS differences. There are a lot of tools listed in
> > HOSTTOOLS, and unfortunately some of them have version dependent
> > output and are used for target builds (the one I've currently stumbled
> > upon is pod2man, but I'm sure there are others). Unfortunately, one
> > could probably argue that HOSTTOOLS is somewhat antithetical to the
> > above statement, at least in regard to target builds. Any host tool
> > output that "leaks" into the target build output can result in a
> > non-reproducible build across hosts, and possibly should be avoided;
> > the alternative is to use (or mandate) the corresponding -native
> > recipe that provides that tool as a DEPENDS so that the controlled
> > internally built version is used instead. Note that this only really
> > applies target builds, not -native (or nativesdk right now). -native
> > recipes would obviously need more HOSTTOOLS to help bootstrap the
> > system. I suspect this would require reworking how HOSTOOLS works so
> > that they can be split into two categories somehow; the tools that
> > have "ubiquitous and stable" interfaces and are fine for all recipes
> > (e.g. cat, sed, true, rm, etc.) and those that are variable and should
> > only be used for -native builds (e.g. pod2man, rpcgen(?), chrpath(?),
> > tar(?)... others?). Anyone have thoughts on this?
> Perhaps reproducibility is the decision-point for adding a tool to the
> HOSTTOOLS: If the precise version of the tool has no impact on
> reproducibility (eg. cat, sed, and even gawk), it is a good candidate
> for the HOSTTOOLS. pod2man shouldn't be in the HOSTTOOLS, because we
> need to control the version.
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