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News about the Package Tracking System



Hi folks,

I just made an important change to PTS. Since the PTS email adresses
have been available on the web, they start collecting a significant
quantity of spam. As a first measure to avoid them I decided that any
email sent directly to the PTS should be auto-approved. Auto-approval is
easy, you just have to add an "X-PTS-Approved" header with a non-empty
value. If you don't do that, you get a bounce (and the bounce explains
you how to auto-approve your message).

This change shouldn't affect too many people since the PTS is mostly
used to receive information and not to send it. However if you were
used to use the PTS for discussing with co-maintainers, you'll have to
get used to add this header.

Otherwise, the PTS continues its (slow) growth. Latest figures are :
- 1274 source packages
- monitored by 981 unique email adresses
- totalizing 2044 subscriptions

Currently I'm alone to manage the PTS and its evolution. I'd like this
to change ... so I'm looking for people who are willing to help manage
it. As a proof of interest, you only have to implement one (or more) of
the items that still are on my TODO list ;-)

Otherwise, applicants or future maintainers can also pick something to do
and I may sponsor them or advocate them in return.

So, what is there to do ?

- Integrate the information from WNPP in the web interface (so that
  people can notice that the package is orphaned or looking for a new
  maintainer (O or RFA))
- Use a more elaborate anti-spam measure (whitelist with one-time
  confirmation for the first time, or something similar to that)
- Check for the validity of the sender adress before sending a
  bounce (this is to reduce the volume of bounces that I
  receive because of the refused spams)

That's what is the most important to me but you may of course have your
own ideas about what needs to be added/done and I'll consider any patch.
I can find many other things that would help (script to
remove/disable/reenable a particular email address for example) but
that's not priority one right now.

So, you want to start hacking ? The sources are in the QA CVS :
http://cvs.debian.org/pts/?cvsroot=qa
(anonymous cvs access at :pserver:anonymous@cvs.debian.org:/cvs/qa, 
module pts) 

The working setup is installed in /org/packages.qa.debian.org/ on
master.debian.org. Of course, I'll respond to questions concerning
the code of the PTS.

Cheers,
-- 
Raphaël Hertzog -+- http://www.ouaza.com
Formation Linux et logiciel libre : http://www.logidee.com

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