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Re: Opera in your repos

Dear Ilya,

Ilya Shpan'kov wrote:

> Last 7 years I use GNU/Linux and know that, for example, in Russia the
> Opera browser is very popular in GNU/Linux Community. Unfortunately, not
> always I can see this browser in the non-free repos. Well, there is a
> question: whether Opera is included to your distro and if not - how we can
> fix this problem? We are ready for any discussions, technical help or
> agreement, if necessary.

have many thanks for your initiative. As an informal start, you might want improve
http://wiki.debian.org/Opera to some degree.

"We" had previous exchanges of thoughts in the past
2001 http://www.mail-archive.com/debian-www@lists.debian.org/msg08128.html
2007 http://www.mail-archive.com/debian-devel@lists.debian.org/msg251312.html

the thread on -devel was rather excellent.

Summarising from what I understood, the major advantage over a deeper integration of your
binaries with Debian would be in a leaner product, i.e. an Opera binary that dynamically
links to as many Debian packages already in the system (and possibly already in memory) as
possible. Debian would then profit from an increased number of libraries that your product
is likely to use and an increased scrutiny of its existing packages. And so would the
upstream authors of those packages.

For that approach to be successful, you would need to perceive Debian as a regular part of
your production environment. A change of the soname of some library would require a
renewed compilation of your binaries. This might work, but only with a very close coupling
of the binary's uploader with your source code. Consequently, the uploader, a Debian
developer, should be part of your team. Since you are apparently based in Oslo, I suggest
you to talk back to Petter (https://nm.debian.org/gpg_offer.php) to help with some initial
steps towards Debian packaging and guide you and your team towards DD status - and/or you
might want to hire him (or another DD somewhere in the world).

A plan B might be to contact Canonical and have that integration process outsourced, so
you would end up in Ubuntu directly. As a good netizen I hope you to approach the first
route, via Debian to Ubuntu, although it is slightly more painful as a start as it seems.
But once that it becomes clear to the other DDs that Opera really cares about our
distribution, they (or the vast majority of them) will also tolerate the Opera binaries in

All the best, hoping for lots of contributions from the other side of the Baltic Sea


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