[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: I'm new to Debian

Hi Sarah,

I am going to reply to you directly and on the list, let me know if you prefer not to be cc'd.

On Oct 1, 2007, at 11:29 PM, Sarah Connor wrote:

I'm new to contributing to Debian, and given that I work with Perl on a regular basis I'm hoping to contribute in perl-related ways at least initially.

One of the best places to start is here: http://pkg- perl.alioth.debian.org/ That link has all the contact information and documentation in one convenient location, bookmark it. :-)

Then, once there, click on the last link on the page, called "subversion.html". It explains how modules from CPAN get put into the debian subversion repository. You will likely want to get an account on alioth if you haven't already, it is needed if you want to inject code into the repository, of course you can check out code anonymously. The subversion tool is how one "uploads" one's work, i.e. new modules, or a new package of an old module.

Much of what needs to be done is listed here: http://pkg- perl.alioth.debian.org/qa/versions.html That link is called "Work in progress or Todo. Once you click on it you will see a list produced by some perl magic that goes through the repository collecting info and then spitting it out in a pretty way. The page is pretty self-explanatory, but I will run down the various columns to the best of my ability. (You can also see my previous email on this subject: http://lists.debian.org/debian-perl/2007/07/msg00177.html and gregor's answer: http://lists.debian.org/debian-perl/2007/07/ msg00178.html)

Essentially what the Todo page shows is the version of the package in debian, and the version of the package "upstream". Upstream is usually CPAN. If the upstream package has a higher version number then there is work for us! We need to download that source code from CPAN and build a new package for debian.

The good thing about this is that all these packages are already in debian and already in the form of a package. So you can look at the previous packager's work, in fact, it might be best to completely copy their work and just add information where it is needed. That can be as little as adding a line or two to the copyright file and the changelog, or it can be sending patches to the bug tracking system and reworking the package, though that is uncommon.

I suggest you start there, find a package you use or you are interested in or have worked with, download the source from CPAN in the method suggested by subversion.html, and then build a new package for the updated software. When you think the package is ready, going onto IRC or sending an email to the list is a good idea, then a debian developer or someone from the perl list can look at your work. More eyes are always better and often people find things that need fixing. Many of the DDs have done a lot of packaging so they will know what needs fixing, they are often busy so patience and politeness are virtues here.

Once your work has been checked, the DD will upload the package to Testing and off it will go though the various process that test new packages. Eventually it will find it way into sid and then maybe etch or lenny, in any case, you will have done a service for debian.

Hope this gives you some places to start and if you have any questions, send them to the list or IRC.

Having looked over the bugs assigned to the Debian Perl group[0] the only one that looked easily solvable and fixable to me right now was #442764, which already has a patch present. (However I've not tested the patch and couldn't NMU right now without a sponsor ..)

So I'm a little stalled. I'd like to contribute to the perl packages in the project, but without being able to upload I'm a little lost.

Are there any perl modules on CPAN that users would particularly appreciate me packaging? I could probably find a sponsor easily enough, and I'm certainly comfortable with actually making Perl packages, having done so locally since the Sarge days. (Initially via dh-make-perl, and later "by hand").

One final question - If I do find a perl package which could be usefully uploaded would I be welcome to ask for membershop/ uploaders here? Or should I stick to the traditional debian- mentors route?

If you are working on a perl package, this is probably the best place to seek sponsorship. If you are working on a package from the debian- perl subversion repo, this is definitely the best place to go.


Reply to: