The Linux Foundation


From The Linux Foundation

The LSB Project's Specification Group (or "subproject") is responsible for the development and maintenance of the LSB written specification. It is also responsible for the development and maintenance of ISO/IEC International Standard 23360, the ISO LSB standard (note: for some years now, LSB is no longer actively maintaining the ISO specification).

The specification group

  • manages the LSB database - see SpecDatabaseSchema
  • writes the specification
  • develops and maintains the toolchain used to produce the specification

Contributors to the written specification should familiarize themselves with the Docbook utilities and the information in WrittenSpecificationHowTo.

The current specification is here.
Development specification snapshot is here.

Books vs. Booksets

As described in WrittenSpecificationHowTo, the LSB project continues to use the terminology of Book and Bookset, originally taken from the DocBook concepts of the same name, but no longer uses the DocBook mechanism. As currently presented on the specification page, Booksets correspond to specification modules or module groups that have meaning to a consumer of the LSB specification. Some booksets are divided into components which could possibly be glued together in different ways; these are known as Books. A Book in this sense may not have any meaning as a distinct unit. Since this is a bit confusing in the abstract, here's an example:

LSB-Core is a Bookset, and a module; conforming applications can indicate that they use only the features of the lsb-core module by having the installable package for ia32 depend on `lsb-ia32-core`. In this sense, this is a user-visible unit.

The LSB-Core Bookset is made up of three Books: Elf (binary file formats), LSB (libraries and commands), and Packaging. For a consumer of the specification to worry about these as individual books makes no sense. However, the prospect exists that one of the books could be published as a separate entity (Elf or Packaging might make sense outside the LSB concept), or a bookset for LSB-Embedded might be glued together from the same Elf book, a slightly different LSB book that used a different library set, and an entirely different Packaging book.

In some cases, the Book is a user-visible unit. At the moment, the Printing module and the C++ module stand alone and are not combined with other pieces. To identify that these Book members are going to be released documents, they get a prefix of LSB-. Starting with LSB 5.0, the status of both will change - the historical choice that C++ is part of the core of LSB but is treated as a separate module will be corrected (this choice was made because it kept the most commonly read part of LSB, the LSB-Core specification, comparatively small; since the favored delivery mechanism is now html with hyperlinks, that's really a non-issue). And Printing will be repositioned as a submodule which will be part of the Imaging module. The 5.0 specification build directory books will thus see those eight books renamed to drop the LSB- prefix. It will remain the case that across books and booksets, directories beginning with LSB- are components intended to be published as is as part of a specification release.

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