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Future of the s390 port

Hi folks

The s390 port was released with Lenny. However it is not in the best
condition.  There are mainly two problems which needs attention, lack of
manpower and a 64 bit userland.

The first problem is the worst.  Currently only Frans Pop and I do work
on it.  Frans only does the Debian-Installer part and I simply have not
enough time to do the rest.  The s390 architecture is quite different to
anything else, so it needs several specialized packages to work[1] and
they need lasting attention.  So if anyone wants to help (especially
Debian developers) for the continuity of this port please speak up.

The second problem is not that critical. No other distribution still
supports a complete 31 bit s390 userland and even Debian dropped the 31
bit kernel support in the meantime[2]. Strategies for an upgrade to a 64
bit userland was discussed lately[3].

I doubt that I would be able to push this port through another release
in the current state. The consequence would by that the port dies
completely and with it the only free and released distribution for this


[1]: Mainly the kernel, generic tools (s390-tools), hardware support
(sysconfig-hardware) and a whole bunch of debian-installer packages.
[2]: <20090524185816.GA21482@wavehammer.waldi.eu.org>
[3]: <20090818204335.GA6874@droopy.oc.cox.net>
It would be illogical to assume that all conditions remain stable.
		-- Spock, "The Enterprise Incident", stardate 5027.3

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