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deviceinfo moved from /etc to /usr/share/deviceinfo

September 25, 2023 1 min. read

Breaking changes

The main deviceinfo file has been moved from /etc/deviceinfo to /usr/share/deviceinfo/deviceinfo. If you have any local scripts that for any reasons read it, we recommend to instead source /usr/share/misc/source_deviceinfo. That file has all the necessary compatibility logic, and will warn you if something goes wrong.

User action

IMPORTANT for mrtest users

If you have any previous packages installed through mrtest, you must run mrtest zap to remove those before upgrading with the instructions below! Failure to do this can result in /etc/deviceinfo being removed and no logic in place to use the new location. If this happens, you can either choose to keep the mrtest and recover by:

sudo mv /etc/postmarketos-mvcfg/backup/devicepkg-utils/etc-deviceinfo /etc/deviceinfo

or completely remove it from your system:

mrtest zap && apk upgrade -a

"apk upgrade" error

Due to the situation of the packages, next upgrade will certainly produce an error. Please run apk fix, and the error should be gone. If you ever modified your /etc/deviceinfo file, you can find it under /etc/postmarketos-mvcfg/backup/devicepkg-utils. If you still need local configuration, please read the new /etc/deviceinfo file, and adjust it accordingly.

The facts

The deviceinfo file, arguably one of the most important parts of postmarketOS has been moved from /etc/deviceinfo, to /usr/share/deviceinfo/deviceinfo. This has been the final consequence of a great effort started at FOSDEM, and involving lots of public (pma#1836) and private conversations. The main reason is that there was no distinction between user's customization of the deviceinfo file, and defaults provided by the packages. Once users would start to modify the file, it would not get updated anymore and this could lead to serious problems such as non-booting devices. Another reason is that this is a required step towards having the same image used by multiple devices.

Related: pma#1836 pma!4283 Move deviceinfo to /usr/share milestone