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Arm Buildds and developer machines

Hi people,

Executive summary: Help! What, exactly, does the arm port need to do to make
a developer-accessible machine happen?

the long version:

As you know arm has not had a developer-accessible machine available to devs
for quite some time.

Various people have volunteered hardware over the last few months, but of
course any such box needs to be set up properly and blessed to be part of
the Debian LDAP structure too.

As documented on this page (which I just discovered, trying to research this
issue: http://azure.humbug.org.au/~aj/blog/2005/12/11?seemore=y ) I thought
arm was waiting on DSA to make jennifer available (because kyllikki told me
so). More recently he said it was being used for kernel development and so
europa and elara were more suitable. I mailed Woody Suwalski outlining the
situation, and asking if it was OK to use them as Developer machines and
nothing happened for a couple of weeks. Last week I mailed him again to find
that he never got the original mail (Spam-filtering, me going quietly mad?),
but he was happy for them to be used as developer machines, and that there
was activity on the box from elmo, presumably making it so.

Excellent, I thought.

But in fact europa and Elara have been made into buildds again, apparently
(according to AJ's post above) because in fact Woody isn't happy to have
them as developer machines. The reason the wiki says (now said) something
different is because I was told something different, indeed had understood
the opposite (and nobody else changed it).

So, AJ says we should communicate better. Fair comment, perhaps, but it's
not that I haven't been trying, and so have others. I have been trying to
understand what we are supposed to do about getting a developer-accessible
machine for months, and I still feel confused. I thought we were waiting on
DSA, but apparently DSA knew nothing of 'jennifer'. I thought Europa and
Elara were going to solve the problem, but apparently that was wrong too.

Can someone please tell this list what the arm port needs to do to get a
developer-accessible machine?

Do we need to find another machine with good connectivity where lots of
accounts are allowed, install the right software and then ask debian-admin
to sprinkle the magic dust? Or would it be better to make one of the 7
builds into an developer-box? I feel that we need a developer box more than
a 7th buildd (indeed I was being told in no uncertain terms a few weeks back
that more than 3 buildds was too many so I'm a bit surprised we now have 7
sanctioned), but ultimately that's not my descision to make (I don't think).

I quite happy to be told that I am useless and incompetent, but I do want to
fix this problem, and it seems to be suprisingly difficult, with different
people telling me conflicting things. The info on the wiki was put up in
good faith. Presuambly the info in AJs post should be considered
authoratative so I should change it to reflect that (looks like he's done
that - thanx)?

Please someone tell me/this list what we need to do to make this happen.

Just for completeness, and in the spirit of AJs comprehensive anaylsis,
The mail exchange with Woody went like this:
> Woody - I mailed you asking about this a couple of weeks ago but have heard
> no reply - did you get my mail?
> We would really like to get these machines converted into
> developer-accessible boxes, but someone said he thought maybe the hosting
> agreement wouldn't allow that? Is that a problem or not?
> Wookey

Nope, I do not believe I have got anything from you...

However couple days ago I have got an email from James with ssh keys to put
on the machines - I inserted them and at one time have seen that somebody
has been accessing the machine using ssh_public_key. So I guess it was
James, although he did not confirm my question if he can access the machines

So as you can see he didn't in fact say 'yes it's fine to have them as
developer boxes', but he didn't say it was a problem either - you can see
how I might have thought that there was not a problem here. And elmo didn't
tell me or the list either so there was no way I could know until AJs post.

Now I know that the two primary threads leading to a new dev-acc box have
floundered, I can start on the lesser ones (i.e. Kick Bill gatliff and the
Nokia people, or get one of the offered simtec boxes and host it here. 

But I would like to be assured that this is the right course of action, as
there seems to have been so much conflicting info generated on this subject.

Advice very much welcome.

Aleph One Ltd, Bottisham, CAMBRIDGE, CB5 9BA, UK  Tel +44 (0) 1223 811679
work: http://www.aleph1.co.uk/     play: http://www.chaos.org.uk/~wookey/

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