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Re: Future releases of Debian

On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 01:08:40PM -0600, Jamin W. Collins wrote:
> On Thu, Jul 24, 2003 at 10:12:11PM +0300, Halil Demirezen wrote:
> > > So, are you volunteering to help those of us without access to either of
> > > the above architectures with "bugs" found in our packages?  I'm not
> > > saying that all architectures shouldn't be supported equally.  I just
> > > don't have access to either of the above architectures to correct
> > > problems found in my packages.

> > do you mean you do not have any archs to test them out? All over the
> > world someone probably have access to them. Quitting support is not 
> > the aim of Debian. However, If you talk about Commodorre 63, I say ok.

> Yes, I do not have access to them for testing or debugging.  I have
> access to only x86 machines currently.  Thus, I can not adequately
> resolve problems with my packages on arm or other architectures.  This
> is currently a bug report for Jabber concerning a segfault on the arm
> architecture, I can not replicate the problem and thus can not resolve
> it.

This does not excuse broken, ugly x86isms in packages.  The vast
majority of portability problems are NOT confined to a single oddball
architecture; they may manifest in different ways, but the bugs are
usually there on multiple architectures at once.  If you don't directly
have the hardware or experience to debug a particular problem, there are
several mailing lists (debian-mentors, debian-devel, or upstream) where
it might be appropriate to ask.  The jabber bug in question doesn't even
have a 'help' tag -- nor does it have a severity appropriate for a bug
that renders a package completely inoperable on a given architecture.

It is an explicit duty of every maintainer to not only care for his
packages to the best of his ability, but also to recognize when he is
unable to care for a package and ask for the help of the larger Debian
community -- whether that means orphaning a package when he no longer
has the time or interest to maintain it, or asking for help on a
particularly confusing bug.

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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