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Misc Developer News (#37)

The news are collected on https://wiki.debian.org/DeveloperNews
Please contribute short news about your work/plans/subproject.

In this issue:
 + Gift QA tag is now an official tag called "newcomer" (⎈)
 + Newcomer bugs for pseudopackages in how-can-i-help
 + MySQL server and client virtual packages
 + As-installed package checking
 + Making packages secure with systemd service files

Gift QA tag is now an official tag called "newcomer" (⎈)

 The gift usertag[1] has been made an official tag, and is now called
 "newcomer" and is represented by a ship's wheel (⎈). Please use this tag
 to indicate suitable bugs for new contributors to Debian.

  -- Don Armstrong

 [1] https://wiki.debian.org/qa.debian.org/GiftTag

Newcomer bugs for pseudopackages in how-can-i-help

 The maintainers of the package how-can-i-help[2] was recently updated to
 show newcomer bugs affecting pseudo-packages.
 If you're looking for new contributors to your team you may have a look
 at your team's related pseudo-packages[3] and tag the suitable bugs for
 newcomers as "newcomer". And of course, everybody is invited to install
 how-can-i-help and help with those bugs.

  -- Laura Arjona Reina

 [2] https://wiki.debian.org/how-can-i-help
 [3] https://www.debian.org/Bugs/pseudo-packages

MySQL server and client virtual packages

 Over the last 6 months, we have introduced a few new MySQL variants into
 Debian and expanded the use of the existing (but never formalized)
 virtual-mysql-* virtual packages to supporting switching in/out the
 different variants.

 The wider intent is that all maintainers of packages that depend on
 mysql-server or mysql-client are encouraged to add as alternative
 dependencies the virtual packages virtual-mysql-server[4] or

 This will enable the alternative MariaDB and Percona packages to satisfy
 the dependency. MySQL 5.5, MariaDB 5.5 and PXC 5.5 are all
 binary-compatible and most likely to work with any program that currently
 uses MySQL in Debian. If you prefer some of the non-Oracle versions of
 MySQL, you can even default to one of them using syntax like for example
 'Depends: mariadb-server | virtual-mysql-server'.

  -- James Page

 [4] https://packages.debian.org/sid/virtual-mysql-server
 [5] https://packages.debian.org/sid/virtual-mysql-client

As-installed package checking

 Several tools for checking packages as installed on the system include
 piuparts[6] (install/upgrade/remove testing) and DEP-8[7] /
 autopkgtest[8] / debci[9] (functional testing) and jenkins[10] (whole
 system testing). A lesser known tool called adequate[11] checks packages
 installed on the system and reports bugs and policy violations. It
 reports incompatible licenses, missing libraries/symbols/symbol versions,
 broken ABIs, broken binfmt entries, missing alternatives, missing
 copyright files, broken symlinks, program name collisions, obsolete
 conffiles, Python byte compiling issues and more. Please consider
 checking your packages with piuparts, autopkgtest and adequate before you
 upload. piuparts from jessie and later will automatically check packages
 with adequate if you install adequate. Up-to-date wheezy backports of
 both piuparts and adequate are available.

  -- Paul Wise

 [6] https://piuparts.debian.org/
 [7] http://dep.debian.net/deps/dep8/
 [8] https://packages.debian.org/sid/autopkgtest
 [9] http://ci.debian.net/
 [10] https://lists.debian.org/201308251648.38010.holger@layer-acht.org
 [11] https://packages.debian.org/sid/adequate

Making packages secure with systemd service files

 Packagers of Debian software, who are needing to create systemd service
 files would benefit from learning from Lennart Poettering's recent
 presentation (video[12], slides[13]) detailing various security features you
 can enable in your package's service files. Many of these features are
 simple to add, and would greatly enhance the overall security of Debian. 

-- Joe Hill

 [12] http://ftp.nluug.nl/video/nluug/2014-11-20_nj14/zaal-2/5_Lennart_Poettering_-_Systemd.webm
 [13] http://0pointer.net/public/systemd-nluug-2014.pdf



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