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Re: Requalification of Alpha for etch

On Sat, Oct 08, 2005 at 07:40:15PM +0200, Falk Hueffner wrote:

> following hppa and ia64, I've started a wiki page to start collecting
> info for the Alpha requalification for etch:
> http://wiki.debian.org/alphaEtchReleaseRecertification

> AFAICS, all criteria but two are given:

> * More developers need to certify in that they're activly developing
>   on this architecture.

We're up to four now.  Is Peter De Schrijver willing to put his name on this
list?  As an active proponent of Debian port diversity, and Helge's
aforementioned DD aboot co-maintainer, I expect that he would be; but I
don't know if he subscribes to the list, so cc:ed.

FWIW, "exceedingly unlikely that there are less than 50 users" is
wishy-washy.  I would appreciate it if we could get a concrete count that
tops 50 users.  This shouldn't be hard, AFAICT; and I don't think it's too
much to ask for that we have 50 users who care enough about the survival of
the port to stand up and be counted.

So if you're on the list, run Debian on an alpha today, and haven't
installed popularity-contest yet, please stand up now and be counted. :)

> * There needs to be another buildd. There have been numerous offers in
>   the past. I have no idea what to do to actually make it happen.

Well, buildds are one of the more involved bits of our ports because they
represent a time committment from a number of people, and when they go wrong
they go very, very wrong.  So we do want to be careful that we act on the
*right* hosting offer; the last thing we want is to put a lot of work into a
box that's going to disappear a few months later for whatever reason, and
have to start over.

Here are the things that are taken into consideration when the DSA folks
evaluate a new buildd offer:

- local admin is a DD (or other known quantity) who knows the architecture
  *and* is available when maintenance is needed
- the type of machine -- proc speed, bus speed, disk capacity, memory, and
  whether the hardware is of a class that can actually handle sustained
  uptimes as expected
- where it's hosted -- is the machine in a hosting facility with HVAC and
  UPS, or is it under someone's desk?  Is it hosted by agreement with the
  owner/management of the facility, or is it being done under the table
  (which again usually means "under someone's desk" ;)?
- what kind of connection does the machine have -- how much bandwidth is
  available, is it a reliable connection or is it consumer-grade ADSL?  Are
  there transfer caps that we and/or our sponsors have to worry about, or is
  the buildd allowed to use whatever bandwidth it can?  Are we free and clear
  of firewall problems that will be an issue for getting packages and mail in
  and out of the buildd?  Note that a preexisting local mirrors will somewhat
  mitigate the bandwidth costs of running a buildd, but that a buildd must
  also be able to pull build dependencies from incoming.debian.org.

Now, I can't give you any kind of authoritative answer on whether a
particular machine would be accepted as a buildd without talking to Ryan and
James first, but the more of this information we have up front and the
better-sounding the answers are, the easier it would be to make a decision
to accept a machine as a new buildd.

I do have a collection of emailed alpha buildd offers that came in this
spring after the Vancouver blow-up, FWIW; I'll start to go through these and
see which sound like they might be good choices.  (Up to this point, I've
been working on trying to get a sparc buildd first, because the existing
vore.debian.org buildd is *not* fast enough to keep up with unstable
reliably, which means sparc needs two whole new buildds to qualify...)

BTW, interesting tidbit -- according to Ryan Murray, there have actually not
been *any* machine offers mailed to debian-admin this year... <shrug>

Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
vorlon@debian.org                                   http://www.debian.org/

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