Debian Weekly News - February 9th, 2005
Debian Weekly News
Debian Weekly News - February 9th, 2005
Welcome to this year's 6th issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for the
Debian community. Andreas Barth told us privately that the mipsel
architecture is back in the list of supported architectures for
testing. It's been reported that Bdale Garbee's young daughter
Elizabeth, who has been a Debian user since she was nine, will deliver
a talk about extending Tuxracer at the upcoming Linux
Debian Kernel IRC Meeting. Maximilian Attems announced an IRC
meeting of Debian's kernel maintainers in order to decide the kernel
versions for the sarge release. Dann Frazier added a table of
available kernels. Steve Langasek provided a log of the discussion
where the pros and cons of the 2.6.8 and 2.6.10 kernel trees were
identified. 2.6.10 is not in a releasable condition for sparc
currently, hence, the installer will stay with 2.6.8 for now.
Package Uploading without FTP. Since the compromise of Debian
servers in 2003 normal developers don't have SSH access to ftpmaster.
As a result, Bartosz Fenski wondered if there was a way to upload
packages without using FTP. Andreas Barth suggested using the
delayed queue on gluck which forwards packages every 15
Report from Solutions Linux. Julian Blache submitted a report
about the Debian booth at this year's Solutions Linux exhibition
in Paris. Apparently this was the best booth they ever managed at this
type of exhibition. Many visitors were interested in sarge release
plans and in Babelbox, a demonstration machine that reinstalls itself
automatically with a different language at each iteration.
Debian on the Mac Mini. William Sowerbutts reported that he has
Debian running on his new Mac Mini, a PowerPC system in a small,
quiet and attractive chassis. He has written up some notes on the
installation process and explained partitioning. Basically, only a
recent CD-R of the new installer and a weak lemon drink are all
Becoming a Debian Developer. Bruce Byfield explained how one
becomes a Debian developer (DD). The process includes agreeing to the
Social Contract, an identity check, and proving the candidate has
the required technical skills. All candidates must be recommended by
an advocate who is already a DD. In recent years the pass rate for
those who complete the various hurdles has been almost 100 %, though
the drop-out rate is high as well.
Software Vendors supporting Debian. Christian Perrier reported
about a software vendor that approached Debian during the
Solutions Linux exhibition due to the growing demand for
supporting Debian. They didn't know how to support Debian and its
kernels best. In France, some ministries are requiring contractors to
support Debian. Joey Schulze explained that it's probably a good
idea to follow Debian development by using an idle sid box.
A Peek into the NEW Queue. Al Stone wondered how to see what's in
the NEW queue of the Debian archive. Jeroen van Wolffelaar pointed
out the queue summary. Steve Langasek explained that
increasing the rate at which new packages flow into unstable is not
something that should be a priority when Debian is trying to fix
release-critical bugs in preparation of a new release.
Valid and invalid Usernames. Marc Haber sought public opinion on
usernames with dots and starting with digits. Alastair McKinstry
added that POSIX already permitted dots in the username and
Michelle Konzack revealed that chown from woody already supported
this. Usernames starting with digits probably ask for trouble. A
new adduser package has been uploaded to experimental to implement
Debug Packages in the Archive. Josselin Mouette noticed an
increasing number of -dbg packages in the archive that are only useful
for debugging. Joey Hess proposed to introduce a separate section
in the archive or a separate archive dedicated to debug packages.
Naming wireless Interfaces. Wichert Akkerman brought up a
discussion on naming wireless interfaces in Debian and Linux since
some are called eth* while others are named wlan*. Christoph Hellwig
asserted that all drivers in the mainline kernel use eth*. David
Goodenough added that some drivers use other interface names and
that wlan* is far from being the standard name.
Choice of Venue. Glenn McGrath wondered why a license which states
the choice of venue is non-free. Steve Langasek explained that the
problem with choice of venue clauses is that anyone who accepts the
license must also accept the burden of defending themselves against
charges of license violation in a court which is likely to have an
implicit bias in favour of the copyright holder.
Debian Project Leader Elections. Manoj Srivastava announced the
opening of the nomination period for this year's Debian Project Leader
elections. Matthew Garrett and Andreas Schuldei have
nominated themselves already. Further nominations will be accepted
until February 28th, followed by the campaigning period until March
21st and the voting period until April 11th.
Security Updates. You know the drill. Please make sure that you update
your systems if you have any of these packages installed.
* DSA 664: cpio -- Insecure file permissions.
* DSA 665: ncpfs -- Unauthorised file access.
* DSA 666: python2.2 -- Unauthorised XML-RPC internals access.
* DSA 667: squid -- Several vulnerabilities.
* DSA 668: postgresql -- Arbitrary library loading.
* DSA 669: php3 -- Several vulnerabilities.
* DSA 670: emacs20 -- Arbitrary code execution.
* DSA 671: xemacs21 -- Arbitrary code execution.
* DSA 672: xview -- Potential arbitrary code execution.
New or Noteworthy Packages. The following packages were added to the
unstable Debian archive recently or contain important updates.
* evince -- Document (postscript, pdf, dvi) viewer.
* maint-guide-ko -- Korean translation of Debian New
* myspell-he -- Hebrew dictionary for myspell.
* myspell-nl -- Dutch dictionary for myspell.
Orphaned Packages. 2 packages were orphaned this week and require a
new maintainer. This makes a total of 226 orphaned packages. Many
thanks to the previous maintainers who contributed to the Free
Software community. Please see the WNPP pages for the full list,
and please add a note to the bug report and retitle it to ITA: if you
plan to take over a package.
* bootcd-dvdplus -- Bootcd extension to use DVD+ media.
* prcs -- The Project Revision Control System. (Bug#293805)
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