Debian Weekly News - December 13th, 2005
Debian Weekly News
Debian Weekly News - December 13th, 2005
Welcome to this year's 50th issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for
the Debian community. Wouter Verhelst called for talks for the
developer's room at the upcoming FOSDEM conference. Nathanael
Nerode reported that the C++ transitions are processing well and
that he doesn't expect new problems with it.
Interview with Branden Robinson. TuxJournal delivered an interview
with Branden that talks a bit about his background and the advantages
of the Debian distribution. His primary focus as Debian Project Leader
has been to try to resolve some long-standing infrastructural issues
that have been frustrating our developers and users.
Joining Skolelinux Forces. Steffen Joeris proposed using
www.skolelinux.org as a debian-edu community base featuring a
Planet RSS feed aggregator as well as email addresses and web
space for project members. This should not only strengthen the
debian-edu community but also facilitate coordination and cooperation
between the different local teams.
Debian stabilising the Linux Landscape. Tom Adelstein explained
how he switched from several other distributions to Debian GNU/Linux
and why it serves him best. The Debian project tends to attract
members with a higher level of technical expertise and a strong
commitment to the Free Software Foundation. According to Netcraft,
Debian is currently the fastest growing GNU/Linux distribution for web
servers, with more than 1.2 million active sites in December.
DCC Common Core 3.0 released. The DCC Alliance announced the
release of DCC 3.0. This is an LSB 3.0 compliant base set of
packages based on and compatible with Debian sarge. DCC 3.0
contains 237 packages of which 200 are binary packages taken from
Debian sarge and 32 are a backports from etch. The remaining 5
packages provide LSB 3.0 compliance in such a way that the default
application environment is 100 % compatible with standard Debian
New Features on buildd.net. Ingo Jürgensmann announced the
inclusion of armeb, hurd-i386, kfreebsd-i386 and m32r
on buildd.net. Other features include estimations of package
building times on various architectures, more statistics, links to
package information and bugs, and an overview about currently
built packages for those buildd that support this site.
Mixing different Upstream Packages. Jay Berkenbilt pondered the
inclusion of third party programs from different upstream developers
in a Debian package and was soliciting input. Mark Brown replied
with details about the procedure with NIS packages. Nathanael Nerode
added that the inclusion depends on the size of the new program
and its prospective use.
Splitting Packages. Bill Allombert asked developers who split
their packages into a normal and a data package to obey to a number of
rules that will help Debian keep the archive sober. These include a
naming scheme, keeping program data in the normal package, the use of
symbolic links and actually moving the shared data into the data
Configuration Handling. Frank Küster wondered how to treat the
large number of potential configuration files of the TeX system best
in Debian packages. He proposed to use a new directory for local files
that should be preferred. Bill Allombert replied with details on
how the menu package handles its configuration.
GPLv3 Development Process. Francesco Poli reported that the
Free Software Foundation has recently disclosed details about the
drafting process that will be adopted for the upcoming version 3
of the GNU GPL. The final text is scheduled to be released between
September 2006 and March 2007 with at least two draft versions to be
released in January and June 2006.
Debian Task Descriptions. Andreas Schuldei called for volunteers
to document descriptions of various tasks within the Debian
project. The goal of these descriptions is to separate names and
persons from tasks that should lead to more objective discussion in
GameBoy Emulators. Robert Millan wondered whether GameBoy
emulators that are released under the GNU GPL should be placed in
main or contrib since they require potentially non-free games.
However, gngb is in main while gnuboy is in contrib. Andrew
Suffield added that there is a thriving community of developers of
free gameboy games.
Security Updates. You know the drill. Please make sure that you update
your systems if you have any of these packages installed.
* DSA 916: inkscape -- Arbitrary code execution.
* DSA 917: courier -- Unauthorised access.
* DSA 918: osh -- Privilege escalation.
* DSA 919: curl -- Potential security problem.
* DSA 920: ethereal -- Arbitrary code execution.
New or Noteworthy Packages. The following packages were added to the
unstable Debian archive recently or contain important updates.
* bmp-crossfade -- Beep-Media-Player Plugin for crossfading /
* gwsetup -- Utilities to configure and manipulate Geneweb
* hocr-gtk -- GTK+ frontend for Hebrew OCR.
* kanjisaver -- Japanese kanji screensaver.
* os-prober -- Utility to detect other OSes on a set of drives.
* pcmciautils -- PCMCIA utilities for Linux 2.6.
* pfb2t1c2pfb -- Convert PFB into more compressible format and
* pybaz -- Python bindings for the bazaar revision control
* remctl-client -- Client for Kerberos-authenticated command
* remctl-server -- Server for Kerberos-authenticated command
* sword-comm-tdavid -- C. H. Spurgeon's Treasury of David for
* xhtml2ps -- HTML to PostScript converter - Tcl/Tk GUI
Orphaned Packages. 2 packages were orphaned this week and require a
new maintainer. This makes a total of 190 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.
* gtk-engines-begtk -- BeOS-like theme for GTK+.
* manderlbot -- IRC bot, written in Erlang. (Bug#342918)
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