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Misc developement news (#4)

The news are collected on http://wiki.debian.org/DeveloperNews
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Debian Enhancement Proposals

 Lars Wirzenius, Stefano Zacchiroli and Adeodato Simó are trying to
 introduce the concept of Debian Enhancement Proposal[1]. Quoting dato's
 mail[2] that started the discussion, the goals of the proposal are

  1. having clear indication of the status of ongoing proposals,
  particularly to settle that a certain design/implementation has been
  agreed upon, ensuring that time spent in that implementation will not by
  wasted, and dissipating "fears" of adopting such implementation (which
  should help to break the traditional "wide adoption vs normative
  documents" Debian loop)

  2. having a central place/mechanism to document decisions and consensus
  reached in our traditional ways and forums, to which we can later refer
  to instead of "yeah, *that* mailing list thread"

 The proposal has received much support although there are still some
 debates on the technical means to store the DEP documents themselves.

  -- Raphael Hertzog

 [1] http://dep.debian.net
 [2] http://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2008/01/msg00045.html


 http://wnpp.debian.net provides a nice overview page and RSS feeds about
 work needing packages and their statistics.

  -- Holger Levsen


 Out of popular request, here is a long overdue announcement about

 Available since September 2007, debcheckout is a new devscript[3]
 performing version control system checkout of a given package. When given
 a package name on the command line, it parses the Vcs-XXX fields of the
 package and attempts to checkout the debianized source tree of the
 package using the needed version control system. It can also be used to
 just print out VCS information or to check out packages from plain URL.
 Usually `debcheckout packagename` is enough to get you started.

 Usually, Vcs URLs point to anonymous checkout, so you won't be able to
 commit on the checked out repository. However debcheckout recognizes some
 typical Debian URL schemes (for example for VCS hosted on alioth or
 launchpad) and, if requested by passing the `-a` (for authenticated)
 flag, will mangle the checkout URL so that you can commit on it. Of
 course this requires you to have the permissions to do so, but that's
 already true for all DDs on some repositories (for example collab-maint).

 See the `debcheckout (1)` manpage for additional information.

  -- Stefano Zacchiroli

 [3] http://packages.debian.org/devscripts

Bits from DEHS

 It's been some time since DEHS[4] had some 'big' changes (probably since
 its creation). Here's a list of changes that have been done lately:

 New look&feel:: DEHS' website now has a look similar to other *.d.o
 pages. More restyling will be done at some point in the future :).

 DEHS statistics:: For some time now DEHS provides a statistics page[5]
 which shows the overall "external status" of Debian over the time. The
 big bumps shown were some changes/tweaks in the backend, not actually
 large changes in the archive.

 Updated uscan:: DEHS is now using, and will continue to use, the latest
 uscan version available. This will increase the quality of the checks by
 using the latest improvements of uscan.

 New upstream version notifications:: DEHS started sending notifications
 to the 'summary' tag/keyword of the PTS when it finds a new upstream
 version. Anyone interested in receiving this kind of notifications should
 read the PTS' documentation to find out how to subscribe[6]. Note that
 there are some packages shipping a watch file which reports an incorrect
 upstream version. I'm going to file reports on those I notice.

 Fresher data:: DEHS now refreshes its data daily (new/updated packages
 only) and several times a month (archive wide) meaning the data is
 fresher than ever. Some more work is being done so packages are checked
 even more often by making use of timestamps, reducing the workload and
 providing even fresher data at the same time.

 Hoping I didn't miss any other important change I invite anyone
 interested in joining DEHS' development or wanting to know more about it
 to contact me (I don't think Stefano will reject anyone willing to
 continue with his work).

  -- Raphael Geissert

 [4] http://dehs.alioth.debian.org
 [5] http://dehs.alioth.debian.org/stats.html
 [6] http://www.debian.org/doc/manuals/developers-reference/ch-resources.en.html#s-pkg-tracking-system

PTS <-> DEHS integration

 A first implementation of DEHS <-> PTS integration is now available.

 On one hand if you are subscribed to the "summary" keyword of a given
 package you will receive mail from DEHS notifying the availability of a
 new upstream version, as detected by DEHS[7]. Kudos to Raphael Geissert
 for the work on the DEHS side.

 On the other hand at each PTS pulse, information about packages which
 have newer upstream version and about packages which failed an uscan run
 are gathered. Packages which a newer upstream will have a corresponding
 TODO item in the PTS page whereas packages with failed uscan run will
 have a corresponding item in the Problems section.

  -- Stefano Zacchiroli

 [7] http://dehs.alioth.debian.org

Using wildcards in symbols files

 Since dpkg-dev 1.14.16, dpkg-gensymbols supports a new syntax in the
 debian/*.symbols files to provide the same dependency information for all
 symbols from a given library version (example: *@GLIBC_2.0). It makes it
 easy to provide a symbols file for sane libraries using symbol
 versioning. Check dpkg-gensymbols' man page to learn more about this.

  -- Raphael Hertzog

Dpkg feature removal schedule and API information

 Starting with dpkg 1.14.16, two files are provided under /usr/share/doc
 (README.feature-removal-schedule and README.api) which describe the
 timeline for features that are going to get removed and the status of the
 APIs provided by dpkg and dpkg-dev.

 Check them out online too:

  -- Guillem Jover

Raphaël Hertzog

Le best-seller français mis à jour pour Debian Etch :

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