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Debian Weekly News - January 9th, 2001

Debian Weekly News
Debian Weekly News - January 9th, 2001
Welcome to Debian Weekly News, a newsletter for the Debian community.

Linux 2.4.0 is out, and Debian has suddenly received a lot of 2.4
compatibility testing. Unstable supports the new kernel without many
difficulties. The main source of problems is devfs, and a number of
bug reports have been filed on packages that need devfs support.
Testing and stable don't quite [1]support the new kernel yet.

The first Debian conference (a followup to last year's zeroth
conference), is in the planning stage. More information about the
conference is on its [2]web page, and [3]this mail from Thierry
Laronde. It will be held from July 4th to 9th in Bordeaux, France.

Watch out for the Debian tar SNAFU. The -I switch in Debian's tar
program makes it use bzip2 for compression. However, in unstable the
-j switch should be used instead, and -I has an altogether different
meaning. So a command such as "tar cIf ..." might compress the file
with bzip2, or it might create an uncompressed archive with [4]no
error message, depending on the version of tar that is used. Tar's
NEWS file explains why this change was made -- compatibility with
Solaris's tar. A fix is planned: Tar's maintainer came up with a
[5]transition plan that will make tar output an error message when -I
is used, and tar's author has [6]accepted the plan.

Lilo is also rather broken in unstable this week. Lilo's new
maintainer made some [7]large changes to the way it is configured,
unfortunately the result is that the new package [8]replaces
/etc/lilo.conf with an automatically generated and often broken file.
The maintainer is [9]working to fix the this and related problems,
but new bug reports (and flames) keep rolling in, so it might we a
while until he has all the kinks worked out.

What's appropriate content for Debian changelogs? Since bug reports
can be automatically closed by changelog entries, there have been some
clear instances of abuse of this feature, and other cases that are
more borderline. One such case is using the changelog to close a bug
report when no changes were actually made to the package, as was done
in [10]this glibc changelog. Whether that is ok is debatable, and
[11]it was. One thing the discussion made clear is that thanks to
automated bug closing and [12]apt-listchanges, an increasing number of
people are reading Debian changelogs. Write them with that in mind.

Warning: source-only uploads [13]no longer work now that Debian uses
package pools. It might get fixed later but for now its broken, so
"Ob!Nike: Just don't do it."

  1. http://lists.debian.org/debian-user-0101/msg00709.html
  2. http://lsm.abul.org/program/topic20/
  3. http://www.debian.org/News/weekly/2001/2/mail#1
  4. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-0101/msg00555.html
  5. http://bugs.debian.org/81556
  6. http://www.debian.org/News/weekly/2001/2/mail#2
  7. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-0101/msg00379.html
  8. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-0101/msg00545.html
  9. http://lists.debian.org/debian-user-0101/msg00960.html
  10. http://lists.debian.org/debian-policy-0101/msg00000.html
  11. http://lists.debian.org/debian-policy-0101/msg00024.html
  12. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/apt-listchanges.html
  13. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-announce-0101/msg00000.html

see shy jo

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