RFH: handle bug reports for unknown packages
Over the years, with the help of Colin Watson and others, I've handled
bug reports for packages that the BTS doesn't know about (either
because the package was removed, is in some unofficial repo or because
the bug submitter made a typo). I'm looking for someone to take over
this activity. I've included more information below on what is
P.S. Is there a good place in the wiki to add this job description.
I think it would be worth to preserve it there for the future.
(Please CC since I'm not subscribed to -qa)
When a bug is filed in the BTS for a package that is not in the Debian
archive, the bug report is sent to the QA unknown-package alias. The
bug report then needs to be handled in an appropriate manner, e.g.
reassigned to another package (for example when there's a typo in the
package name) or closed (when the package no longer exists in the Debian
When a bug report for an unknown package comes in, the following
information can be checked to decide what to do about the bug:
- Check the NEW queue at http://ftp-master.debian.org/new.html and
the incoming queue at http://incoming.debian.org The BTS doesn't
know about packages in NEW or incoming but bug reports for such
packages are worthwhile reports. You can simply bounce a copy of
the bug report to the maintainer or reply to the bug and put the
maintainer in CC.
- Check the list of removed packages at http://ftp-master.debian.org/removals-full.txt
If the package was removed from Debian, you can close the bug report
saying that the package was removed and why it was removed.
- Check the Content file to see if the unknown package name is a valid
in an existing package.
- Often the package name in the bug report is an obvious typo for an
existing package. In that case, you can simply reassign the bug,
ideally with a version number (reassign nnnnn package version).
- We often get bug reports for linux-image-2.6.xx* packages that no
longer exist. They should be reassigned to the linux-2.6 package
since they might still be relevant.
- We also get a lot of bug reports for packages in the unofficial
Debian Multimedia repository at debian-multimedia.org. The best
way to handle such reports is to CC the debian-multimedia.org
maintainer, Christian Marillat <firstname.lastname@example.org>, and close
them with a message that debian-multimedia.org is not an official
repo and that you have copied the maintainer.
- Finally, if you don't know where the package comes from, you can ask
the submitter. Suggest that they run:
dpkg -p PACKAGE | grep Maintainer:
to see who the maintainer is.