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

weekly policy summary

Here's what's been happening on debian-policy this week.

Thanks to Julian Gilbey, every old proposal on the BTS has been added
to this list. Most of them are marked "old". At least two of them seem
to be consesnsuses already and appear as accepted amendments.

Note: for details of the policy process, see
http://www.debian.org/~srivasta/policy/ch3.html. Also, this summary is
available on the web at http://kitenet.net/~joey/policy-weekly.html.

                           Accepted Amendments
Rewrite of section 5.7 (Programs for the X Window System) (#38212)
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed on 23 May 1999 by Branden Robinson; seconded by Joey
    Hess, Joseph Carter, Antti-Juhani Kaijanaho and Brock Rozen.
  * Updates section 5.7 to reflect changes made in the great X re-org.
    Also modifies the section on motif, and also includes a few minor
    typographical changes elsewhere.
Separate menu policy (like virtual package list) (#37713)
  * Consensus for 2 weeks.
  * Proposed on 15 May 1999 by Chris Waters; seconded by Edward Betts,
    Joey Hess, Joseph Carter and Steve Greenland.
  * Consists of some text to add to policy referring people to an
    external file that has the menu hierarchy in it. It's argued that
    this will make it easier to maintain the menu hierarchy, since
    Joost won't have to release a new menu package to do so. The
    proposed hierarchy is identical to that in #36051 with the
    addition of a top level Help menu and Apps/Databases.
Libtool archive (*.la) files in -dev' packages (#37257)
  * Consensus for 2 weeks.
  * Proposed on 4 May 1999 by Ossama Othman; seconded by Marcus
    Brinkmann and Marcelo E. Magallon.
  * .la files aren't useless, libtool can use them and they are
    essential to programs that use libltdl. Proposal is to include .la
    files in -dev packages if they are produced by the build process.
Logrotation (#37342)
  * Consensus for 2 weeks.
  * Proposed on 28 Apr 1999 by Balazs Scheidler; seconded by Brock
    Rozen, Raphaël Hertzog, Brian Almeida, Marco d'Itri and Joseph
  * Change to using logrotate instead of savelog.
Utmp group proposal (#37389)
  * Consensus for 2 weeks.
  * Proposed on 09 May 99 by Wichert Akkerman; seconded by Branden
    Robinson, Joel Klecker, Ossama Othman, Raphael Hertzog, Marco
    d'Itri, Joseph Carter and Karl M. Hegbloom.
  * Create a new utmp group that can modify utmp, programs that were
    previously suid root can be sgid utmp instead.
    ( Amended by Branden Robinson to make wtmp and lastlog also
    writable by group utmp. )
Adopt the FHS in place of FSSTND (#37345)
  * Consensus for 3 weeks.
  * Proposed on 09 May 99 by Julian Gilbey; seconded by Joseph Carter,
    Aaron Van Couwenberg and Marco d'Itri.
  * Modify policy to require use of the FHS, with possible exceptions.
Needs clarification about Standards-Version (#21969)
  * Consensus.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila; seconded by Martin Mitchell.
  * Summary of a huge thread/flamewar: the changelog for version of debian-policy contains a description of the
    version-numbering scheme of debian-policy, packaging-manual and
    devel-ref which are all meant to agree on the first three
    components (major, minor version and major patchlevel). They may,
    however, disagree on minor patchlevel. Thus it makes sense only to
    use the first three components in the Standards-Version field of
    packages, although use of all four components is also OK. This is
    documented in the changelog, but was never actually incorporated
    into the policy document. A flamewar ensued about the meaning of
    the changelog sentence....
    ( It appears that consensus was reached and that this proposal is
    now accepted, but it is hard to tell. )
GPL moved to /usr/share/common-licenses (#28747)
  * Consensus for 7 weeks.
  * Proposed on 1999/04/05 by Santiago Vila; seconded by Marcus
    Brinkmann and Antti-Juhani Kaijanaho.
  * Correct the description of the location of the common licenses in
Definition of extra priority (#33076)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed on 8 Feb 1999 by Santiago Vila; seconded by Peter S
    Galbraith, M.C. Vernon, Jules Bean and Julian Gilbey.
  * Clarification of what the "extra" priority means.
Let's Debian blow... gracefully!
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Fabien Ninoles; seconded by Sean E. Perry, Edward
    Betts and Peter Makholm.
  * Creation of a sub-directory aside from main, contrib, non-free
    named data, that will hold non-program related data.
Have proposal-submitting guidelines in policy package
  * Proposed on 31 May 1999 by Julian Gilbey; seconded by Santiago
    Vila and Antti-Juhani Kaijanaho.
  * Put Manoj's proposal-sumbitting guidlines in the policy package
    and be referred to by policy section 1.3.
    ( Manoj has made an executive decision to put this in. )
Md5sum proposal
  * Stalled for 1 week.
  * Proposed on 17 May 1999 by Piotr Roszatycki; seconded by Peter S
    Galbraith and Christoph Lameter.
  * Require a md5ums file be present in all packages.
Software depending on non-US (#37251)
  * Stalled for 2 weeks.
  * Proposed on 06 May 1999 by Marco d'Itri; seconded by Gordon
    Matzigkeit, Joseph Carter, Chris Waters and Davide G. M. Salvett.
  * Proposal to allow software that depends on software in non-us into
    main (currently restricted to contrib).
    ( This may be unnecessary given the recent re-org of non-us. )
                            Active proposals
A better way to configure debian systems (#38703)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed on 1 Jun 1999 by Goswin Brederlow.
  * Another configuration management proposal.
Editor and sensible-editor
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed on 2 Jun 1999 by Goswin Brederlow.
  * Instead of having programs use $EDITOR and fall back to editor,
    just use sensible-editor.
Data section (#38902)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed on 3 Jun 1999 by Darren O. Benham.
  * "Since there is interest in packaging census data, maps, genome
    data and other huge datasets I and since most people agreed that
    dropping them in main or contrib is not a great idea, I propose
    the creation of a data section to reside along side of main,
    contrib and non-free." Includes rules about what goes in this
Policy should not be governed by GPL (#38762)
  * Withdrawn.
  * Proposed on 1 Jun 1999 by Julian Gilbey.
  * Proposal to do something about debian-policy's copyright so
    modificed versions cannot be passed of as debian policy.
    Specifically to put it under the FSF's documentation license
    ( There were many objections and this was withdrawn. )
On closing of bugs (#23355)
  * Proposed on 31 May 1999 by Santiago Vila.
  * Add a section to policy about bugs, laying out how developers are
    allowed to manipulate them.
    ( Ian Jackson posted some guidlines about a year ago that meet
    this need. The Developer's Refernece may be a more suitable
    location for them. )
Shouldn't start init scripts in wrong runlevel (#20373)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Herbert Xu; seconded by Julian Gilbey.
  * Maintainer installation scripts should only start a service
    (/etc/init.d script) if it is required by the current runlevel.
    ( Have to take account of sysvinit versus rc-file methods; want
    the logic to be in an external program. )
/etc/init.d/script need not be a conffile if actively maintained
  * Proposed by Bdale Garbee; seconded by Julian Gilbey.
  * /etc/init.d/script files need not be conffiles if they are
    actively handled by maintainer scripts.
    ( Compare 29770 and 30122. )
Policy still suggests /etc/rc.boot instead of /etc/rcS.d (#32448)
  * Proposed on 26 Jan 1999 by Brian Servis; seconded by Julian
  * Change policy to refer to /etc/rcS.d instead of the old
    ( No packages in potato still use /etc/rc.boot, so this will not
    cause anything except policy to change. )
Automatic installation and configuration
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed on 25 May 1999 by Massimo Dal Zotto.
  * Similar to the "configuration of packages" proposal, this is a way
    to allow automatic configuration of packages. This one records
    answers as you install once and remembers them for use later
    (possibly on a different machine). It also includes question
    priorities, and a mechanism for storing install-time messages in a
    mailbox. This proposal includes working code. No changes need be
    made to dpkg for this proposal to work.
Do not make hardlinks to conffiles (#22935)
  * Under discussion.
  * Proposed by Ian Jackson; seconded by Julian Gilbey.
  * They should be avoided wherever possible.
                            Stalled proposals
A pre-install required space checking mechanism for Debian packages
  * Stalled for 1 week.
  * Proposed on 19 May 1999 by Manoj Srivastava.
  * The idea is to enable tools like apt to check if a set of packages
    will fit on a disk, taking various partitions into account. This
    will require adding something like the output of du to the package
    or to the Packages file or to a new file that can be downloaded.
    The details are still being hashed out.
Configuration of packages
  * Stalled for 1 week.
  * Proposed on 05 May 1999 by Brederlow.
  * Draft proposal to graft user-friendly and/or automatic
    install-time configuring of packages onto dpkg.
                              Old proposals
Patented software == non-free?
  * Old.
  * Proposed on 10 May 99 by Joseph Carter; seconded by Davide G. M.
  * Amend policy 2.1.4 to remove reference to patents as something
    that may place software in non-free.
Ispell suggests non-existant package (#8221)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Vincent Renardias.
  * The ispell packages use the ispell-dictionary virtual package,
    which is not listed in the virtual package list.
    ( We could either add it or ignore it as the ispell packages all
    cooperate. )
/etc/environment (#20099)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Florian Hars.
  * There is currently no policy on the use or content of
    /etc/environment, and there probably should be.
Mutt: Mail can be lost from inbox! (#31441)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Marco d'Itri.
  * Require both fcntl() and dotlock locking for mailbox locking to
    prevent mail loss when using NFS.
    ( This was originally raised as a critical bug against mutt, so
    should probably be looked into quite soon. )
Unexpected use of /cgi-bin/ (#32263)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Johnie Ingram.
  * Desire to split /cgi-bin/ into system and local CGI directories
    for the scripts provided by Debian and locally.
    ( Quite contentious, but with good arguments for it if done
    properly. )
Section 3.4.2 clarify naming .sh scripts in /etc/init.d/ (#33826)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Richard Hawes.
  * The rc and rcS scripts do (or should) source (ba)sh scripts for
    efficiency; they are identified by a '.sh' suffix. But policy
    makes no mention of this.
    ( /etc/init.d scripts are now described in section 3.3.2 of
    policy. )
Missing UUCP-locking info (#11094)
  * Old.
  * Proposed on 1997/08/24 by John Goerzen.
  * The policy should explicitly mention that serial lines require
    UUCP-style locking.
    ( The then-current policy maintainer said that it was in the
    FSSTND so did not need to be in policy, but policy would be
    modified to include a note about it. However, closer reading of
    FSSTND and FHS would seem to indicate that it just describes where
    lockfiles should be placed, not that they must be used. )
Smartlist: don't die if /etc/aliases is not a file (#22518)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila; seconded by Martin Schulze (?).
  * Maintainer scripts should not fail if /etc/aliases is not a file
    (similar to the policy about newaliases possibly not existing).
Security issue when accessing documentation through an http server
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Martin Stjernholm.
  * /usr/doc can be accessed through the http servers by default,
    which allows crackers easy access to version numbers of all
    installed software. This default should be changed by policy.
    ( This was originally raised as an Important bug, and has
    apparently been discussed on Bugtraq recently. )
Is it ok to close a bug without fixing it? (#24067)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila.
  * There is no proposal here, except in the title.
    ( This is a debate between Santiago and James T. over a particular
    "bug". )
Suggestion to use (#24133)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Francesco Potorti`.
  * Default news server should also be looked for using NNTPSERVER
    environment variable
Dependency issue of the manpages (#24695)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Keita Maehara.
  * The man-browser virtual package should be in virtual packages
    ( This could be closed if we class all manpage readers and users
    as cooperating, but this seems to be too much to ask. )
Mailboxes with perm 660 (#24772)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Herbert Xu.
  * Mailboxes should surely be installed with mode 600 rather than
    mode 660 owned by .mail.
Gradio: binaries should be in /usr/bin not /usr/X11R6/bin (#25199)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Ben Pfaff.
  * X-dependent binaries should live in /usr/bin, not /usr/X11R6/bin.
    ( This is currently being discussed in a separate thread on
    -policy. )
Debian-policy should probably contain the FHS standard. (#25533)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila.
  * As the title.
    ( This can be closed as soon as 37345 (adoption of FHS) is
    implemented; this will follow as a direct result. )
U/gid 100 should be statically allocated (#25882)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Anthony Towns.
  * Three users in the 0-99 range have GIDs of 100, and base-passwd
    statically assigns GID 100, which is against current policy.
    UID/GID 100 should be classed as statically assigned.
    ( Objection received from Julian Gilbey: this is, as it was
    originally filed, a critical bug against base-passwd and should
    return there instead of changing policy. )
Contact address for virtual package name list (#26159)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Adam di Carlo.
  * Contact name in virtual-packages-list should be debian-policy, not
    Christian Schwarz.
    ( This *must* be implemented, possibly by referring to the
    policy-modification process. )
Debian Logo License (#26915)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Manoj Srivastava.
  * No actual proposal included.
    ( Can probably be closed, especially given the recent vote(s). )
Minor error in S2.1.6 of policy manual (#27137)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Mark Baker.
  * Programs whose authors encourage donations but claim that not
    donating is immoral etc. should go in non-free, not contrib;
    contrib's defn changed
Daemons should run as root only if really needed (#27205)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Marco d'Itri.
  * As title; this should be in policy.
Icon location policy (#27869)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Daniel Martin.
  * Where should XPM and other icon files live? Not discussed by FHS.
Differentiate between conffile and configuration file (#29770)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila.
  * (a) Rewrite policy to make a clear distinction between conffiles
    (thing's listed in a package's conffile) and configuration files
    (b) Modify policy to say: "A package may not modify a
    configuration file of another package, except by arrangement (with
    that package or by policy)."
    ( Compare 21585 and 30122. )
Debian-policy could include emacs policy (#20036)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila.
  * Discussion about including sub-policies (emacs, menu) in the
    debian-policy package.
    ( How does this interact with accepted amendment 37713? )
Fix bad advice about conffile management (#30122)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Steve Greenland; seconded by Manoj Srivastava.
  * Another clean-up request for policy's description of conffile
    ( Compare 21585 and 29770. )
xdm: xdm should not start in all multi-user runlevels by default
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Branden Robinson.
  * Runlevels policy: should we have a runlevel which does not start X
    (specifically xdm)?
/etc/init.d scripts (#36151)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Brock Rozen.
  * /etc/init.d scripts should specify an explicit PATH so that they
    find the necessary programs such as start-stop-daemon, even if
    called in an unusual way.
What exactly is allowed in the PAGER variable? (#36619)
  * Old.
  * Proposed by Santiago Vila.
  * This should be described in policy.
    ( Should other similar variables such as EDITOR and VISUAL also
    be? )

Last modified: Sat Jun 5 14:31:30 1999

see shy jo

Reply to: