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Re: Future releases of Debian

How hard or unreasonable would it be to make it easy for users to sign up
for some sort of automated notification system which would keep them
informed about the status of packages they use?  If I were a completely
pragmatic user, I would want something like this:

  1.  To run stable.
  2.  To be informed if a package I use regularly has some_number of RC
      bugs open in unstable for some_amount_of_time.
  3.  To be informed if a package gets orphaned upstream, or (more
      feasibly and probably more importantly) at the debian level.
  4.  Possibly to be informed if a package I use hasn't been updated
      upstream and/or in debian for a long time.

This would be useful information for making choices and plans, and
acquiring it by hand can be a bit painful.

Debian developers are uniquely situated to help users navigate and select
amoung the tens of thousands of packages now available.  All we would need
to do is expose some selected bits of our existing infrastructure in a
collected, readable form.  We could simultaneously serve our users and
address the fact that at some point, we're going to have to jettison
packages that people are using (fair warning will make this less painful).

Actually, if there is any interest I might try to put something like this
together myself.

Britton Kerin
GNU GPL: "The Source will be with you... always."

On Sat, 19 Jul 2003, Eduard Bloch wrote:

> Moin Adrian!
> Adrian Bunk schrieb am Saturday, den 19. July 2003:
> > Where's the big use if you ship 7 CDs but some random packages are not
> > present?
> >
> > You might not care, but perhaps thousands of users care.
> >
> > The "What, Debian 3.1 ships 10 CDs but this common program I need for my
> > work that was in Debian 3.0 is not included?" would do much harm to the
> > reputation of Debian.
> Bitching about this problem won't help. Instead, I suggest automated
> MIA probes (warning email) with maintainers who have RC bugs open
> without any comment or without a comment but not particular action in 14
> days, for example (hello tbm ;-).  Looking at the RC bug list, I get the
> impression that many maintainers are just not interessted in maintaining
> their packages. The mail should contain the suggestion to orphan the
> package or set the help flag or file an RFA bug report on it. When the
> maintainer does not respond in 4 weeks, orphan the package. No bug gets
> fixed by just waiting (in normal situations) and when the package gets
> removed from the stable distribution, well, blame the maintainer instead
> of posting rhetorical questions on -devel.
> MfG,
> Eduard.

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