[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Bits from the DPL (Opteron, LSB and cooperation)

I'm sorry that I haven't posted anything in a while.  As I mentioned
in my message in June, I spent a great deal of time in the last two
months at various conferences.  I attended 7 conferences and gave
talks about Debian at six of them (in Europe and Australia).  I had a
good time at the conferences, and it was great and productive to talk
to many Debian developers and users in person.  I especially enjoyed
the Debian Conference and the preceding Debian camp.  I think the camp
was a great success since we got a lot of work done.  I look forward
to the next camp and conference which is tentatively planned to be
held in Brazil.

At two conferences and trade shows, some developers and I approached
some hardware companies in order to get a dedicated Opteron machine
for Debian.  This was very fruitful and I'm happy to announce that
Digital Networks United Kingdom (DNUK) has donated an Opteron box to
the project which will act as a developer accessible .debian.org box.
This machine has recently been shipped to Positive Internet in the UK
and is currently being set up.  Watch [0] to see when it becomes
available.  Furthermore, FMS Computer has agreed to donate an Opteron
machine which will be used for various porting work, especially for
debian-installer.  I'm very thankful for their kind donations.
Finally, freenet.de AG has recently offered an Opteron machine which
is now available at pergolesi.debian.org and a PowerPC with chroots
(bruckner.debian.org).  Thanks!

I have not only talked to hardware companies, but also to some
software companies, notably to those who have products based on
Debian.  In particular, I talked to Lindows and Xandros.  Although
those companies use Debian, there is unfortunately no strong
relationship with them at the moment.  I discussed possible ways we
can work together closer and I hope something fruitful springs from
that.  As a start, Xandros has agreed to work with us to make sure
that sarge will be LSB compliant.  Regarding LSB, I also talked to
Scott McNeil of the Free Standards Group and he was very helpful
detailing the steps Debian has to take in order to get an LSB
certification.  As it turns out, there is quite a bit of paperwork to
do and some SPI members and our lawyers are looking at that at the
moment.  Also, in preparation for LSB v2.0 there is a review of LSB
v1.9 out and comments are solicited until the end of this month.  If
you're interested in LSB compliance for Debian, please download v1.9
and review it.  See my message at [1] on this for more information.

Of course there are not only commercial products based on Debian.
Many of you might heard that 80,000 GNOME desktops have been deployed
in Extremadura, Spain [2].  This is a great success for the GNOME
project, but in fact it's also one for Debian -- those 80,000 desktops
run GNU/LinEx [3] which is based on Debian!  There is also Skolelinux
[4,5] which is a Debian based distribution for schools.  I'm very
pleased with Skolelinux since they're closely working together with us
and everything they do gets integrated into Debian.  In particular,
they are a great driving force behind debian-installer.

I think we will see more efforts like LinEx and Skolelinux in the
future.  There is a great demand for Debian from governments and
educational institutions.  They like the fact that Debian is
vendor-neutral and a solid foundation on which further work can be
based.  The open nature of our development process also makes it much
easier to get involved and drive Debian in specific directions.  I
think that this interest in Debian is a great opportunity for us.  If
every government interested in using a Debian based system funds a
small number of people to work on it, then there is a great amount of
work done from which Debian and all other Debian based systems
benefit.  Clearly, this is something we would benefit from and
something we should encourage.  At the same time, it might create
problems.  Foremost, we have to figure out how we can effectively work
together with such projects and to make sure that their work is being
integrated in Debian so everyone profits.  Secondly, there are some
questions about how those projects should be related to Debian (e.g.
should they be allowed to carry the "Debian" name).  This question
recently came up in the case of Skolelinux, but I'm sure we will see
this more often in the future.  I've discussed the Skolelinux case on
the SPI mailing lists in the last few weeks.  I have now sent a
summary[6] to the debian-project mailing list to encourage input from
other people. (I'm aware I'm very vague here; my -project posting has
a complete summary.)

In any case, I think that there is a great opportunity for Debian now
to work with government or other (possibly funded) projects, and I
look forward to the benefits of that work.  Let's all make Debian
stronger by working together!

P. S.  If you're not subscribed to the debian-project mailing list
yet, now would be a good time to subscribe.  Summaries of recently
approved New Maintainers will be posted there soon as well.

[0] http://db.debian.org/machines.cgi
[1] http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel/2003/debian-devel-200308/msg02765.html
[2] http://www.gnome.org/press/releases/extremadura.html
[3] http://www.linex.org/
[4] http://www.skolelinux.no/index.php.en
[5] http://lwn.net/Articles/47510/
[6] http://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2003/debian-project-200309/msg00020.html

Martin Michlmayr

Attachment: pgpfmWMUgFod8.pgp
Description: PGP signature

Reply to: