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RFH: handle bug reports for unknown packages

Over the years, with the help of Colin Watson and others, I've handled
bug reports for packages that the BTS doesn't know about (either
because the package was removed, is in some unofficial repo or because
the bug submitter made a typo).  I'm looking for someone to take over
this activity.  I've included more information below on what is

Anyone interested?

P.S. Is there a good place in the wiki to add this job description.
I think it would be worth to preserve it there for the future.

(Please CC since I'm not subscribed to -qa)

Job description:

When a bug is filed in the BTS for a package that is not in the Debian
archive, the bug report is sent to the QA unknown-package alias.  The
bug report then needs to be handled in an appropriate manner, e.g.
reassigned to another package (for example when there's a typo in the
package name) or closed (when the package no longer exists in the Debian

When a bug report for an unknown package comes in, the following
information can be checked to decide what to do about the bug:

 - Check the NEW queue at http://ftp-master.debian.org/new.html and
   the incoming queue at http://incoming.debian.org  The BTS doesn't
   know about packages in NEW or incoming but bug reports for such
   packages are worthwhile reports.  You can simply bounce a copy of
   the bug report to the maintainer or reply to the bug and put the
   maintainer in CC.

 - Check the list of removed packages at http://ftp-master.debian.org/removals-full.txt
   If the package was removed from Debian, you can close the bug report
   saying that the package was removed and why it was removed.

 - Check the Content file to see if the unknown package name is a valid
   in an existing package.

 - Often the package name in the bug report is an obvious typo for an
   existing package.  In that case, you can simply reassign the bug,
   ideally with a version number (reassign nnnnn package version).

 - We often get bug reports for linux-image-2.6.xx* packages that no
   longer exist.  They should be reassigned to the linux-2.6 package
   since they might still be relevant.

 - We also get a lot of bug reports for packages in the unofficial
   Debian Multimedia repository at debian-multimedia.org.  The best
   way to handle such reports is to CC the debian-multimedia.org
   maintainer, Christian Marillat <marillat@debian.org>, and close
   them with a message that debian-multimedia.org is not an official
   repo and that you have copied the maintainer.

 - Finally, if you don't know where the package comes from, you can ask
   the submitter.  Suggest that they run:
       dpkg -p PACKAGE | grep Maintainer:
   to see who the maintainer is.

Martin Michlmayr

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