Thank you for your input, its highly useful as I attempt to revamp the apt repository. Responses inline.
My name is Steven Noble and I have been in Networking since about 1988, starting with multi-node BBSes (FidoNet 1:203/7666), moving to large internet providers (Exodus Communications), Network hardware vendors (Procket, Cisco) and eventually into the Open Networking space. I have historically been a very open person, sharing information about how I run systems, an early example is the work I did with OS/2 in the early 90's and my "DOS Sysops in an OS/2 World" publication. I am also the President of a non-profit (https://www.netdef.org) that funds work on Quagga and other open networking projects.
Open Network Linux (ONL) is a project that started in late 2013 to provide a base network operating system for bare metal switches. The goal of ONL is to provide a functional linux distribution providing system level functionality (fans, leds, etc) and a path for the community to build their own forwarding agents. At this time we support ~25 different switches from multiple hardware vendors. ONL also provides binary only closed source drivers for certain Broadcom chips and systems due to licensing restrictions.
My mistake, filling out the form required a lot of information and I chose the wrong one, I have updated it. We build using a generic Debian image using buildroot.
I have been working on revamping the apt repository to conform to the Debian standards. I do have to admit that it is not completely clear how things should be laid out and that I have taken a lot of information from looking at other repositories. We have our system that builds the repository data and I will look into how we can add a Release file.
I take pride in being as open and compliant as possible when it comes to licenses. While we do have limited disk space on the apt server, I will look into pulling the sources in for any packages that we have mirrored the binaries for.
armel is very, very new (the main pull was yesterday) and has not been announced yet. We have not pushed any packages to the repo yet, but will do soon.
I am looking into this, once I understand how to generate it I will put it into the build system.
We are migrating to Jessie, but stability is the most important thing to us and we need to be sure that we have all of the same tests that we do on wheezy working on jessie (no small task).
Historically and now, we have always worked with other NOS vendors including Cumulus, Pica8 and others. Our software has been available for many years and is used for quite a few projects.
We have SSL available on the repository but due to issues with ONIE not supporting SSL, we default to non-ssl.
Thank you for all the feedback, I will be working through each of the things you brought up, starting with the repository.