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The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Sun Feb 5 00:00:00 2017 in weekly-news

For other news, please read the official Debian blog Bits from Debian, and follow https://micronews.debian.org which RSS-feeds the @debian profile in several social networks too.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Debian's Security Team releases current advisories on a daily basis (Security Advisories 2017). Please read them carefully and subscribe to the security mailing list.

Internal News/Happenings

The seventh update of the stable distribution Debian 8 "Jessie" was published on 14 January 2017. This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the stable release, along with a few adjustments for serious problems.

Events: Upcoming and Reports

On 25–26 February 2017 there will be a Bug Squashing Party in Endocode AG, in Berlin, Germany. See the wiki page for details.

Help needed

Debian has a 'newcomer' bug tag, used to indicate bugs which are suitable for new contributors to use as an entry point to working on specific packages. There are 188 bugs available tagged 'newcomer'.

More than just code

945 people and 17 teams are listed on the Debian Contributors page for 2017.

Reports

Freexian issues monthly reports about the work of paid contributors to Debian Long Term Support.

Quick Links from Debian Social Media

This is an extract from the micronews.debian.org feed, in which we have removed the topics already commented on in this DPN issue. You can skip this section if you already follow micronews.debian.org or the @debian profile in a social network (Pump.io, GNU Social, or Twitter). The items are given unformatted, and in descending order by date (recent news at the top).

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Nov 28 00:00:00 2016 in weekly-news

For other news, please read the official Debian Blog Bits from Debian, and follow https://micronews.debian.org which RSS-feeds the @debian profile in several social networks too.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Debian's Security Team releases current advisories on a daily basis (Security Advisories 2016). Please read them carefully and subscribe to the security mailing list.

Internal News/Happenings

Debian "Stretch" has entered its transition freeze. There will be no new library transitions or package transitions that involve a large number of packages.

Events: Upcoming and Reports

On 4 December 2016 there will be a Bug Squashing Party in Dresden, Germany. See the wiki page for details.

Help needed

All Debian contributors - from bug reporters to Debian project members and participants in any Debian team - are invited to take part in the first edition of the Debian contributors survey. The deadline for participation is: 4 December 2016, at 23:59 UTC. See more details in the call for participation mail.

More than just code

1,898 people and 19 teams are listed on the Debian Contributors page for 2016.

Outside News

Daniel Pocock attended the first summit of the Free Software Foundation Europe (FSFE), and sent a report about it.

Reports

Freexian issues monthly reports about the work of paid contributors to Debian Long Term Support.

Quick Links from Debian Social Media

This is an extract from the micronews.debian.org feed, in which we have removed the topics already commented on in this DPN issue. You can skip this section if you already follow micronews.debian.org or the @debian profile in a social network (Pump.io, GNU Social, or Twitter). The items are given unformatted, and in descending order by date (recent news at the top). Sorry for the long list, we expect to deliver these "digests" more often in the future.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Mar 18 00:00:00 2013 in weekly-news

Holger Levsen announced the first update of Debian Edu Squeeze since its initial release. "This update contains all the changes between Debian 6.0.4 and 6.0.7, as well as Debian Edu specific bugfixes and enhancements", explained Holger. The updated installer images are available for downloading.

DPL election campaign

This year's DPL election campaign has now officially started. Three candidates are running for DPL this year: Moray Allan, Gergely Nagy and Lucas Nussbaum. There is already quite an active debate on the debian-vote mailing list, where people can ask the candidates questions about their platforms. So far, the main topics discussed have been: questions about recruitment of new contributors and mentoring; the use of Debian's money and the possibility of fundraising campaigns to renew Debian's core hardware infrastructure; and possible changes to the constitutional role of the DPL, including the creation of a DPL board or changing the length of the term of office.
The campaign will end on 30 March, and will be followed by a two-week voting period. "These early days of the 2013 DPL campaign have been very intense; as a mere voter I'm struggling to keep up with the debian-vote backlog. Still, it's incredibly refreshing to see such a democratic battle between volunteers eager to offer their free time as DPL. Volunteerism in free software is in very good health, it seems", said Stefano Zacchiroli, who has been DPL for the last three years.

A deeper look inside the freeze

Lisandro Damián Nicanor Pérez Meyer blogged about his experience with the Debian freeze as a Debian Developer. Lisandro, who is a member of the Qt/KDE team, intensified his activity during the freeze, reviewing patches, applying them and testing the fixes. With help from the other members of the team, Lisandro has done eleven uploads of Qt to get it ready for the new release. He explains that during the freeze, communication within and between teams is crucial, as the energies of all Debian Developers are focused on releasing, and that requires a great deal of coordination. And the team that is put under the greatest amount of stress during the freeze is the Release Team. "From the outside, communicating with the RT was a kind of "special art", and not an easy one", explained Lisandro, who then lists some useful hints for communicating with the Release Team in an effective way.

Kali Linux: a new Debian derivative for penetration tests

Raphaël Hertzog blogged about the birth of Kali Linux 1.0, a new Debian derivative developed by Offensive Security to be an advanced and stable penetration testing distribution.
Mati Aharoni, lead Kali developer, explained that "Debian provides a reliable base to build a new distribution and yet can easily be customized to add bleeding edge features, thanks to the unstable and experimental distributions". Raphaël, who helped the Kali team in setting up their technical infrastructure as a Debian derivative, also added that not only will most Kali applications be integrated into Debian, but Offensive Security is also willing to dedicate a node of their armhf cluster for Debian's own use.

Other news

Lucas Nussbaum published some statistics about changes in Debian packaging and structure since 2005 gathered by mining data from snapshot.debian.org. The majority of the software in Debian is now team-maintained through a VCS repository (mostly Git), and packaged using dh.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Luca Falavigna blogged about his experience in one of Debian's core teams, the FTP Team.

Upcoming events

There is one upcoming Debian-related event:

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Mar 4 00:00:00 2013 in weekly-news

The seventh update for Debian 6.0 (codenamed "Squeeze") has been released. This update mainly adds corrections of security problems to the stable release, along with some adjustments for serious problems.

Call for projects and mentors for Debian GSoC 2013

Paul Tagliamonte, newly appointed administrator for Debian participation in the Google Summer of Code program 2013, asked all Debian contributors for projects and mentors to help Debian participate in the initiative this year. "Everyone (member of the Debian project or not, student or not) is welcome to submit their ideas, and to try and find people willing to mentor the projects", explained Paul in his mail. Information on how to submit proposals is available in the relevant wiki page. You can also contact Paul and the other GSoC administrators for Debian on their mailing list or on their IRC channel, #debian-soc on irc.debian.org.

Wheezy release progress

Niels Thykier, release team member, noticed that the current pace of RC bug fixes is slowing down, with only 1.1 RC bugs fixed a day since his last report. About 200 RC bugs are left to be fixed, and if the pace of RC bug fixes does not pick up, the release team may need to remove packages along with their reverse dependencies.

Debian at Open Source Conference 2013 Tokyo/Spring

Hideki Yamane reported about Debian participation at Open Source Conference 2013 Tokyo/Spring at Meisei University, in Tokyo, Japan. Debian was present with a booth where Hideki and other contributors talked with users and enthusiasts. Takahide Nojima delivered a talk titled "Debian Update" focused on the latest Debian achievements.

arm64 image available

Wookey announced the availability of the arm64 image. This is the culmination of a three year long effort to make Debian bootstrappable, which has been used for the first time on the port to the 64-bit ARMv8 architecture. Whilst it should be considered alpha-grade for now, it represents a great achievement: "all these packages were cross-built on raring, untangling cyclic dependencies with build profiles making this the first (non x86) self-bootstrapped Debian port ever", explained Wookey. "Getting this port working has been "interesting" because it's attempting four new things all at once: multiarch (file layouts and dependencies), crossbuilding (tools and packaging support in a distro that historically was always natively built), arm64 (aarch64) support in packages that need it, and build-profiles to linearise the build-order", he added. The current status of the bootstrap is online, whilst more information on the port (and how to build images) is available on the wiki page of the project.

Other news

Paul Wise blogged about a QA tool for finding packages' inadequacies (broken symlinks, missing copyright files, obsolete conffiles, etc.) called adequate and developed by Jakub Wilk. People interested in software quality are invited to participate in Debian's QA initiatives.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Kurt Roeckx, Debian Project Secretary, announced the timetable for the DPL election.

Upcoming events

There is one upcoming Debian-related event:

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Feb 18 00:00:00 2013 in weekly-news

The first release candidate of the installer for Debian Wheezy was released on 17 February. Many fixes are included in this release of the installer, along with new improvements, including better speech synthesis support, various improvements for GNU/kFreeBSD, fixes for the grub2 package, new supported hardware, etc.

The newsletter for the Debian community

A full list of known issues with details is collected on the errata page. Everyone is encouraged to test the installer and report bugs; media and further information are available on the Debian Installer pages.

700,000th bug reported

Christian Perrier won the 700,000th bug contest, by betting more than two years ago on the date of bug #700000, which was recently reported by Cédric Boutillier. He now invites everyone to participate in contests to predict the dates when Debian's 800,000th and 1,000,000th bug reports will be filed.

Bits from the DPL

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his monthly report of DPL activities for January 2013. Stefano reminded readers that the election process for the next DPL term will start in early March, so there are only a few days left to convince Debian developers to run. He confirmed that he will not run again for another term. Meanwhile he is also looking for help in organising Debian activities in the Google Summer of Code program, and in maintaining an authoritative list of DFSG-free licenses. Among other things, Stefano also mentioned an updated policy draft for Debian marks.

Reports from FOSDEM

During the first weekend of February, the Debian Project participated at FOSDEM 2013 in Brussels, Belgium. In addition to the official Debian booth, several project members delivered talks about different topics: among others, Andreas Tille presented the Debian Med project (video), Tollef Fog Heen and Michael Biebl gave an overview of systemd in Debian (video), Samuel Thibault reported on the GNU/Hurd architecture in Debian, and Ian Campbell spoke about the future of paravirtualisation under Xen. Most of the FOSDEM talks are available as video recordings.

Update on Clang and Debian

Sylvestre Ledru posted an article on his blog about the results of rebuilding the archive using Clang 3.2. To make the results more visible, Paul Wise has integrated them into the Package Tracking System. In the meantime, Hideki Yamane has written a patch to make it easier to use Clang instead of gcc when building with pbuilder. You can find more information about current efforts related to building Debian with Clang and other alternative compilers in Sylvestre's FOSDEM talk.

Other news

Stefano Zacchiroli renewed Kurt Roeckx's appointment as Project Secretary.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Oct 1 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

The sixth update for Debian 6.0 (codenamed "Squeeze") has been released. This update mainly adds corrections of security problems to the stable release, along with some adjustments for serious problems.

Reports from the latest BSPs

The bug squashing party held in Dublin on Saturday, 8 September was hosted in Google office space and gathered 15 people. In addition to its impact on the Release-Critical bugs list it triggered the bootstrapping of a local Debian community with the desire to hold a second such party in October.

The newsletter for the Debian community

The following weekend, another bug squashing party held in Berlin gathered approximately 25 people who also worked on German translations besides dealing with Release-Critical bugs.

Results from Debian's Google Summer of Code

Ana Guerrero sent a report about Debian's Google Summer of Code. Debian has been participating in the Google Summer of Code since 2006, and sponsored 15 projects this year, of which 12 finished successfully. Students supervised by Debian mentors worked on various aspects of the project, including improvements to mentors.debian.net, the development of multi-arch cross-toolchains, and metrics for team activities, to name just three. Some of these results have already been included into Debian. The Debian project thanks those who took part, including especially the students for their contributions, and invites them to continue being involved in making Debian better.

Mini DebConf in Paris

Sylvestre Ledru, on the behalf of the organisation team, announced that the second Mini DebConf in Paris will take place on 24 and 25 November and will be hosted by EPITA. His message mentions that a BSP will be in progress through the entire event, and that they're currently soliciting talks for the event.

Interviews

There has been a DebianEdu interview with Giorgio Pioda who describes, among other things, how he got involved in Debian Edu and his views about it.

Other news

Since the CIA service for monitoring VCS repositories via IRC is now dead, Martín Ferrari proposed KGB as a replacement.

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Sep 17 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

Joerg Jaspert sent some bits from the FTP Team, announcing the ongoing sprint during which the team is working on optimising the current code behind the main archive, finalising a proposal for Debian Personal Package Archives (PPAs), and merging backports.debian.org into the main archive host. This year, participation in the Google Summer of Code initiative helped the team in implementing a true multi-archive capability, making it possible to merge separated parts of the Debian archive (like security and backports) into the main archive. Joerg also added a call for volunteers: if you are a Debian Developer and want to help one of the key teams of the Debian infrastructure, please consider joining them.

Bits from the DPL

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his usual monthly report of DPL activities: during August, Stefano continued his efforts on a new trademark policy and on the DFSG-free logo relicensing (with the help of members of the Software Freedom Law Center).

Technical Committee Nominations

The technical committee has called for nominations to fill Manoj Srivastava's seat. To nominate yourself or someone else, send email to debian-ctte-private@debian.org with the subject "CTTE Nomination of loginname", where loginname is the nominee's Debian account login. Please see the call for nominations for more information.

Interviews

Jennifer Cloer interviewed Ben Hutchings, member of the Linux kernel team in Debian.

Other news

Cyril Brulebois announced the second beta release of the Debian Installer 7.0.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Christian Perrier reported about the state of translations for debconf screens: five languages have reached 100% (German, Russian, Swedish, French, Portuguese). Many thanks to all the translators!

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Sep 3 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

The yearly Libre Software Meeting, better known by its French name Rencontres Mondiales du Logiciel Libre (RMLL), took place in Geneva, Switzerland, from 7 to 12 July; Anne Forker sent a report about the Debian presence there, completing the report by Andreas Tille mentioned in a previous issue. The Debian project was well represented with a booth, four lectures and a workshop. At the booth, T-shirts, umbrellas, Swiss army knives and other goodies could be purchased. The booth was also a meeting point for fans and contributors of Debian, a place to discuss computer issues and for socialisation between conference attendees. Some pictures of the event taken by Marc "Duck" Dequènes are available on his website.

64-bit PC: primary Debian architecture

According to the Debian Popularity Contest, 64-bit PC is now the primary architecture in terms of number of submissions via the popularity-contest package, which periodically and anonymously sends statistics about the usage of installed packages. With a bit more than 60,000 submissions, 64-bit PC just overtook 32-bit PC. These leading architectures are followed by armel and powerpc, for which the number of submissions is several orders of magnitude behind.

New mirrors closer to Debian users

The Debian mirrors team, together with our sponsors, is happy to announce three new mirrors: in Russia, provided by the National Research Nuclear University "MEPhI" whose administrators are "pleased to provide a full Debian mirror to Russian users"; in Vietnam, provided by MAYCHU; and in Malaysia, provided by the Multimedia University of Malaysia. For other countries, the full list of mirrors is available online, as well as the experimental redirector which will automatically take into account these new mirrors. There are still countries lacking good connectivity to a Debian mirror; sponsors interested in hosting are invited to contact the mirrors team.

Debian translation workflows in a Master's thesis

Laura Arjona recently defended her Master's degree thesis entitled "Translations in libre software". Many aspects of Debian are included, such as a case study about translation projects and teams in Debian; another one about "The Debian Administration Handbook"; and an interview with Javier Taravilla, a member of the l10n-spanish (Spanish localisation) team. "The more I see of the Debian community, the more I like it and it amazes me", she said when she announced her project to the Debian mailing list. Laura started to contribute to the spam cleaning efforts, and she plans to help in the l10n-spanish team soon. The manuscript of her thesis as well as the slides are available from her blog.

Other news

Andrea Mennucci announced that the new GPG key for the debdelta package is now available.

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Do you want to organise a Debian booth or a Debian install party? Are you aware of other upcoming Debian-related events? Have you delivered a Debian talk that you want to link on our talks page? Send an email to the Debian Events Team.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Tue Aug 21 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

On August 16, the Debian Project celebrated its nineteenth birthday since Ian Murdock's original founding announcement.
Debian contributors and users celebrated it all over the globe: appreciation messages and pictures of the parties can be followed on the Thank you Debian website, maintained this year by Lincoln de Sousa and Marcelo Jorge Vieira. You can submit your own message directly on the web platform or using the Identi.ca hashtag #thxdebian.
For this occasion, Leandro Gómez created a nice birthday postcard while some other contributors blogged about their first experiences with Debian.

Help the Debian Installer team: test the new version of the installer

The Debian Installer team announced the first beta release of the installer for Debian 7.0 "Wheezy". The team asks Debian users to help in testing and improving this new version of the installer: while there are some known issues with the installer that do not need to be reported, it is very important to try the installer in order to find all possible bugs before the release.
Problems should be reported as an installation report.

Bits from the DPL

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his monthly report on DPL activities. Stefano reported about the ongoing discussion with the FSF about Debian Freeness, as well as an important discussion about the trademark policy draft and the logo relicensing.

Other news

The 30th issue of the miscellaneous news for developers has been released and covers the following topics:

The newsletter for the Debian community

Justin B. Rye has started an informational wiki page describing where package names come from, suggestively entitled "Why the name". As the page description says, giving cryptic names to software is a well-established UNIX tradition, and the explanations are often missing from the documentation, either because the developers imagine it's obvious (usually wrongly) or because they think nobody cares (and here they're usually right, or it would turn up as FAQ material).

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Jul 30 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

Andreas Tille wrote a report from the Libre Software Meeting 2012 recently held in Geneva, where he was representing the Debian Med team. Andreas organised a Debian Med packaging workshop during the meeting, which resulted in the creation of initial packaging, almost ready for the Debian archive, of Creatools. Andreas also delivered a talk about the integration of VistA into Debian, explaining the need to "include hospital information systems straight into Debian and by doing so open the doors of hospitals for large scale Debian installations".

DebConf13 Logo Contest: final round voting

Luca Capello announced a final round of voting for the DebConf13 logo contest. The voting period will end on 1 August at 23:59 (UTC+2h). You can vote directly on the relevant DebConf wiki page. DebConf is the annual Debian conference which in 2013 will be held in Vaumarcus, Switzerland.

Rapsberry Pi + Debian = Raspbian!

Mike Thompson announced that Raspbian, his port of Debian armhf, focused on better support for the Raspberry Pi, has just become the official recommended Linux distribution for the Raspberry Pi. Raspbian is a "complete rebuild of Debian Wheezy armhf for the armv6+vfp CPU on the Raspberry Pi", explained Mike. Raspbian is available from the download page of the Raspberry Pi website.

Interviews

FLOSS For Science published an interview with Sylvestre Ledru about his work on Debian and Scilab.

Other news

Adam Barratt sent some bits from the Release Team, including an announcement that the codename for Debian 8.0 will be "Jessie".

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Do you want to organise a Debian booth or a Debian install party? Are you aware of other upcoming Debian-related events? Have you delivered a Debian talk that you want to link on our talks page? Send an email to the Debian Events Team.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Thu Jul 12 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

The "Joy" theme has been selected as the default artwork for Debian systems for the upcoming release of Debian 7.0 (Wheezy). The theme is intended to appeal by being efficient with a light and simple theme. There is also a fancier variant called "Joy Inksplat" available in the desktop-base package for those who prefer a more fun desktop. For the release after Wheezy, there are early thoughts about introducing multiple themes, more fine-grained theme packages and metapackages for selecting among them.

Reports from DebCamp

DebCamp took place last week at the Universidad Centroamericana in Managua, Nicaragua. This week has been very productive, as can be seen from people's reports: Christian Perrier described on his blog his work on internationalisation, localisation and Samba packaging; Joey Hess mentioned his progress on git-annex assistant and Debian CDs; Gregor Herrmann wrote about his work within the Debian Perl Group; Steve McIntyre wrote about his preparations for the six sessions he is running; and Gunnar Wolf reported that DebCamp has officially started.
DebCamp is followed this week by DebConf12, the conference for Debian developers, which started with the Debian Day, an open event for enthusiasts, users, developers and anyone interested in finding out more about Debian and Free Software. The whole of DebConf is covered on video (which makes many people happy). The schedule of the conference and the relevant links for the video streaming are available on the dedicated DebConf page.

Bits from the DPL

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his monthly report on DPL activities from DebConf12. During this month, Debian joined the FSF campaign on secure boot, and DuckDuckGo sent the first report of a donation after the agreement on revenue sharing. Stefano also mentions some interesting discussions for project evolution, in particular the proposals to change the way DM permissions are handled and to change the policy ruling the debian.net domain.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Stefano Zacchiroli delivered his final "Bits from the DPL" talk on the first day of DebConf12. In his talk (slides) he spoke about the early history of Debian, where we are today, how our place in the wider free software community has evolved, and our principles; he summed up by stating that "we play a fundamental role in Free Software". He then explored the challenges that we face in meeting our responsibility to live up to our role in the Free Software community, including keeping contribution levels healthy, increasing the diversity of our community, being on time with releases, keeping release freezes short, collective code ownership, low company involvement and how the DPL role might need to evolve in the future.

Debian Maintainer Dashboard, a new UDD frontend

Lucas Nussbaum announced on his blog the creation of the Debian Maintainer Dashboard, a service relying on UDD to expose as much useful information as possible about a maintainer’s packages. The Debian Maintainer Dashboard is in its early days and is waiting for contributors.
In related news, UDD has been migrated to ullmann, one of the new machines recently set up by DSA.

Interviews

There have been "Debian Edu interviews" with George Bredberg (in English), José Luis Redrejo Rodríguez (in English) and Markus Gamenius (in Norwegian), who all describe, among other things, how they got involved in Debian Edu and their views about it.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Jun 25 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

Richard Darst posted a financial report for DebConf11. Approximate numbers had been known since last year, but Richard checked all transactions against SPI and FFIS records to confirm that, thanks to the support of the Republika Srpska government, the conference generated a surplus for Debian of around €20,000. This surplus is expected to be reinvested in future DebConf costs.

Countdown to the freeze

Neil McGovern, on behalf of the Release Team, announced that the freeze will start on 30 June. That means that no new packages, and no new versions, will automatically migrate to testing after that point. Developers can then focus on fixing the last release critical issues in order to offer everyone a best quality Wheezy stable release once it's ready.

Debian mirror redirector

Raphael Geissert widely announced a new mirror redirector service, http.debian.net, that aims to reduce the impact of occasionally offline or out-of-date mirrors, and to use the worldwide network of mirrors more effectively. For now this service is unofficial, though Raphael hopes that it might be used as default in future. You're welcome to test and use the service by following the instructions on its website, and send feedback to Raphael.

Internationalisation sprint

Christian Perrier sent a report from the internationalisation (or "i18n") sprint that was hosted by IRILL in Paris last weekend. Seven people attended the meeting, mainly in order to move some previously unofficial services onto Debian infrastructure, including the package description translation system. It was a success — new servers were configured during the sprint, and the actual services are now migrating to them.

Salzburg bug squashing party

Bernd Zeimetz published a report from the Salzburg bug squashing party that was hosted by conova communications GmbH last weekend. Fifteen to seventeen people from five countries were present, mainly working on release critical bugs in testing and unstable. About 68 bugs in unstable and testing were triaged, patched, fixed, or at least pinged.

Presentation in Romania

Victor Nițu gave a presentation on the Debian Project, its philosophy and achievements, and the global and Romanian communities: A universal project, with a global community. This is the first local Debian event in Romania after a year and a half of online presence. Fundația Ceata, a local Free Software and Free Culture organisation, supported the community by providing the event location, the after-party, and the new domain name, debian.org.ro.

Bits from the DPL

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his monthly report on DPL activities. May saw the first IRC meeting of the Technical Committee, and they plan to set up a monthly pattern for these meetings, continuing in June. He mentioned his (failed) attempt to reach an agreement with the debian-multimedia.org archive maintainers, and the ongoing Debian for Scientific Facilities Days conference that is also hosting a Debian Science Sprint. Three people replied to his call for help with DPL tasks, and a calendar of periodic IRC public meetings will be published soon. There's still time to apply if you are interested.

Other news

Simon Kainz announced the availability of a new service, DUCK — the Debian URL checker, which aims to monitor the Homepage field of packages' control files.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Martin Zobel-Helas sent a request for comments on a proposed policy change for debian.net, a DNS zone where Debian Developers can create entries for their projects.

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Jun 11 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

Lucas Nussbaum has been doing some full archive rebuilds on Amazon Web Services (AWS). "Archive rebuilds play an important role in Debian Quality Assurance and Release Management efforts", according to Lucas, who has been running Debian archive rebuilds on the Grid’5000 testbed since 2007, and has filed over 6000 release-critical bugs in the process. Lucas managed to get Amazon to award Debian $10,000 in order to run about 60 full archive rebuilds on their infrastructure, allowing developers interested in custom tests to do them themselves.

Debian welcomes diversity

A diversity statement for the Debian project has been approved by a large majority of the project members. The statement explicitly welcomes and encourages participation by everyone. "This statement marks a new stage in the process of welcoming contributors to our project", said Stefano Zacchiroli, Debian Project Leader. "Community diversity goes hand in hand with community richness."

armhf and s390x on their way to Wheezy

Adam D. Barratt, Release Team manager, announced that the armhf and s390x ports are now one step closer to being part of Wheezy: they are now officially being considered as release architectures. Adam thanks everyone involved in getting both architectures to this point.

DebConf13 logo contest

Luca Capello announced that the DebConf13 organisers are seeking logo designs for next year's DebConf. Some ideas are already present on the DebConf wiki, but they would like to expand these a bit more in line with their vision. There are only a few days left if you would like to participate: the deadline for DebConf13 logo submissions is Sunday 17 June.

First bug squashing party in Shanghai

Thomas Goirand published a report from the first bug squashing party in Shanghai. About twenty people participated, including three Debian members, and twenty-five bugs were fixed.

Bits from the Ruby Team

Antonio Terceiro posted some bits from the Ruby Team in which he announced that the default Ruby interpreter for Wheezy would be Ruby 1.9. Ruby 1.8 will be available in Debian during the Wheezy life cycle, but since security support from upstream will end in the next year, it will not be shipped in subsequent major releases. With this switch, Debian users will benefit from the improvements, especially in performance, that Ruby 1.9 brings over Ruby 1.8. People who still want to use Ruby 1.8 as the default interpreter may find the ruby-switch or rbenv packages useful. More information is available on the dedicated wiki page.

Interviews

There have been "Debian Edu interviews" with Ralf Gesellensetter and Mike Gabriel, who both describe, among other things, how they got involved in Debian Edu and their views about it.

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Do you want to organise a Debian booth or a Debian install party? Are you aware of other upcoming Debian-related events? Have you delivered a Debian talk that you want to link on our talks page? Send an email to the Debian Events Team.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon May 28 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

Cyril Brulebois sent some bits from the Release Team. Cyril announced that, although the exact date has not been determined yet, the freeze of Debian 7.0 "Wheezy" has been scheduled for the second half of June. Cyril also asked for help in fixing the high number of Release-Critical bugs affecting "Wheezy".

Removal of Qt3 from Debian

Ana Beatriz Guerrero López blogged about the removal of Qt3 from Debian: the package was orphaned a year ago and, as nobody has volunteered to maintain it, is now a candidate for removal before the release of "Wheezy". A wiki page tracking the status of the removal is available.

Report from Debian Utsavam

Praveen Arimbrathodiyil wrote a report from the Debian Utsavam event that was held at the end of April at MES college of Engineering in Kuttippuram, India. The two-day event was targeted at both new and advanced users, with talks on basic command-line usage as well as workshops on how to create Debian packages.

Interviews

ITWire published an interview with Stefano Zacchiroli, following his re-election as Debian Project Leader.

Other news

Christian Perrier noted that 14 languages are to be deactivated in the Debian Installer and called for volunteers to help to keep them working.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Christopher Huhn noted that the computer infrastructure at GSI uses Debian. GSI is a German non-profit research lab that runs a heavy ion accelerator: they run a Debian-based Linux farm with more than 1000 nodes.

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon May 14 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

The fifth update for Debian 6.0 (codenamed "Squeeze") has been released. This update mainly adds corrections of security problems to the stable release, along with some adjustments for serious problems.

Deadlines reminder for DebConf12

Leandro Gómez noted that the deadline for sponsored registration for DebConf12 is quickly approaching; hurry up and register before Tuesday 15 May!

The newsletter for the Debian community

In related news, Gunnar Wolf sent another call for papers for DebConf12: talk submissions will be accepted until a day before the talk itself, but they must be submitted before Friday 1 June to have guaranteed video coverage and to be announced as part of the conference's official program.

General Resolution about diversity statement

The Debian Project Secretary, Kurt Roeckx, announced that the process for a General Resolution about the Debian Project's diversity statement has been started. Details are available on the related vote page while the discussion can be followed on the debian-vote mailing list.

First alpha release of the installer for Debian Wheezy

The new Debian Installer supports WPA, uses ext4 as default filesystem, allows Btrfs for the /boot partition, allows a choice of the ISO image to use, and a lot more. It also improves the handling of ZFS file systems, and supports a lot of new hardware. You are welcome to help finding bugs and further improving the installer by trying it out. Installer CDs, other media and everything else you will need are available.

"The Debian Administrator's Handbook" freed

Raphaël Hertzog announced the availability of "The Debian Administrator's Handbook". This manual is the English translation of the French best-seller "Cahier de l'Admin", of which he is co-author with Roland Mas. The book is now released under a DFSG compliant license and it has also been packaged for the main Debian repository, so you can install it on Debian unstable with:

An ever growing mirrors network

Raphael Geissert wrote a blog post about the constant growth of Debian's mirrors network. The total number of mirrors is currently 330 for the HTTP protocol and 300 for FTP. The mirrors are distributed across 73 countries, thanks to the Debian sponsors hosting them.

Bits from the DPL

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his monthly report on DPL activities. During April, Stefano mostly spent time trying to reach consensus on various topics: the proposal for a diversity statement for the Debian Project, the revenue sharing agreement with DuckDuckGo, the long running conflict over Python maintenance and the relationship between pkg-multimedia maintainers team and the unofficial debian-multimedia.org repository. In his mail, Stefano also asked for "DPL helpers": volunteers to help the Debian Project Leader in some minor tasks and share his work-load.

Other news

Joerg Jaspert announced the creation of a new archive key for Debian 7.0 "Wheezy". The key will be put to use with the release of "Wheezy" or the expiry of the old key 0x473041FA (2018-03-05), whichever comes first.

Upcoming events

There are some upcoming Debian-related events:

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Apr 30 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

The Debian Project has announced the availability, for its testing distribution, of some packages to create a private cloud: among others, xcp-xapi and nova-xcp-plugins. "Preserving user freedoms in the cloud is a tricky business and one of the major challenges ahead for Free Software. By easing the deployment of Debian-based private clouds we want to help our users in resisting the lure of giving up their freedoms in exchange of some flexibility," said Stefano Zacchiroli, Debian Project Leader.

Debian Tour in Nicaragua

The Debian Nicaraguan community is organising the Debian Tour: from April to June, members of the local Debian community will deliver talks in several universities in Nicaragua, helping students to learn about the Debian Project and Free Software in general. The tour started in the city of Masaya, and will touch other cities such as Managua and León. On May 5th, Debian Tour will take place at UCA (the future DebConf12 venue) and special visitors, the Debian Developers and DebConf chairs, Gunnar Wolf and Holger Levsen, will attend this time.

Debian at ESRF

Jérôme Kieffer noticed that the European Synchrotron in Grenoble is migrating its computing infrastructure to Debian: the computer controlling the particle accelerator has already been migrated, as well as some data analysis servers and part of the computer cluster. The European Synchrotron Radiation Facility ("ESRF") is a joint facility supported and shared by various European countries which operates the most powerful synchrotron radiation source in Europe. "For data analysis Debian offers both the richest environment including the most used software and libraries in our field of research, and a rock solid distribution with security fixes," added Jérôme in another mail.

Bits from the DPL

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his monthly report on DPL activities. During the last month, Stefano informed the project about a proposal for a revenue sharing agreement from DuckDuckGo, marked DEP-5 as accepted, and worked with Kenshi Muto to transfer the ownership of the Debian trademark in Japan to SPI. Stefano also gave an interview about Debian and Free Software in general (in Italian) to one of the major newspapers in Italy, La Repubblica. Thanks to Matteo Cortese, who translated it, an English version of the interview is also available.

Interviews

Raphaël Hertzog published a "People behind Debian" interview with Samuel Thibault, member of the accessibility and Hurd teams.

Other news

Vincent Bernat wrote a tutorial on how to install XBMC on Debian "Wheezy". XBMC is a media centre supporting a wide range of digital media and remote controls, which — thanks to the hard work of Andres Mejia — has recently been accepted into Debian.

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Apr 16 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

The Debian project has just reelected Stefano Zacchiroli for a third year as Debian Project Leader. More than 80% of voters put him as their first choice (or equal first) on their ballot papers.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Stefano's large majority over his opponents shows how satisfied the Debian project is with his work so far, and its wish for him to represent the project during one last term — Stefano has already announced he won't be seeking reelection again next year. Wouter Verhelst and Gergely Nagy also gained a lot of support from Debian project members, both coming hundreds of votes ahead of the "None of the above" ballot choice.

Registration open for DebConf12

The Debian project is pleased to announce that registration is now open for the DebConf12 conference, which will take place in Managua, Nicaragua, from Sunday 8 July to Saturday 14 July 2012. The conference will be preceded as usual by a week-long DebCamp, from Sunday 1 July to Saturday 7 July. It will only be possible to apply for food and accommodation grants and/or travel grants until 15 May.

Personal BSP initiatives

We usually give information about BSPs where a group of people meet over a weekend, but today we'd like to mention two personal initiatives. Gregor Herrmann has reported every week over ten Release-Critical bugs squashed. Gerfried Fuchs also regularly reports on stable Release-Critical bugs squashed, and has managed to squash over thirty bugs each month. We would like to thank Gregor Herrmann, Gerfried Fuchs and all other RC bug addicts who are constantly helping to make our distribution better.

The state of Debian s390x

Philipp Kern posted an update on the current state of the Debian s390x port. Work started on this port last summer, during DebConf11, and in less than a month it already had almost 65% of packages built. Unfortunately, a new GLib release created some problems on this architecture; but recently a new major release of GLib fixed all the issues. The next steps for this port will be to fix open bugs and to make Iceweasel build successfully.

Interviews

Raphaël Hertzog published a "People behind Debian" interview with Francesca Ciceri, a member of the Debian press and publicity teams, while Petter Reinholdtsen interviewed Wolfgang Schweer, Justin B Rye and Andreas Mundt for his "Debian Edu interviews" series.

Other news

Guido Günther sent out some bits from the fifth Debian Groupware Meeting, which was held at the Linux Hotel in Essen, Germany. During the weekend the group fixed various issues and was able to push new versions of icedove and d-push to "unstable" while iceowl (dead upstream) remains in "experimental". Some work was also done on OpenChange, Zarafa ZCP and SOGo, and several evolution bugs were worked on.

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Apr 2 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

Andreas Tille sent some bits from the Debian Med team, where he talked about recent initiatives of the team including the "Debian Med Bug Squashing Advent Calendar 2011" and the "Mentoring of the Month" (MoM) project. Andreas also reminded us that in January the Debian Med project reached 10: in ten years, Debian Med has grown from a one man project to a "strong team maintaining a set of over 200 highly specialised packages with a high quality standard", as Andreas said in a related blogpost. The Debian Med project not only provides and maintains specialised packages for biology and medicine, but is — like other Debian Blends — "a nice entry point for people to join Debian because newcomers can identify themselves with a known topic (the scope of the Blend — in this case medicine and bioinformatics) first and learn Debian rules in a team with common interest", added Andreas in the mail. This idea was confirmed by the results of a survey focused on why Debian Med team members became Debian Developers.

Debian joins the OSI

The Debian project announced that it is joining the "Open Source Initiative (OSI)" as an affiliate. The OSI was founded in 1998 with the aim of explaining, advocating, and protecting the term "open source". For many years now, the OSI has helped the "Open Source" trademark gain recognition, particularly in the corporate world.

Report from DSA Team sprint

Luca Filipozzi wrote a report from the Debian System Administrators ("DSA") team's sprint held over the weekend of 16-18 March in Oslo, Norway. During the meeting the team discussed a long-term plan for Debian's infrastructure, reviewing the machines currently administrated, and formulating procedures regarding account and group management. One of the main points discussed at the meeting was the necessity to renew the set of machines — which are now old and long out of warranty — and how to do it. While in the past Debian's hardware requirements were met by donations of new and used hardware from individuals and organizations, this is no longer true. The team elaborated a "Five Year Plan" for a hardware refresh cycle to avoid to having machines more than five years old. "A clear outcome of our work on the Five Year Plan is an understanding that hardware has now become one of the biggest expense categories for Debian", said Luca. Various machines are also needed in order to support the whole set of architectures for which Debian is shipped. For more information on how to donate equipment to the Debian Project, please contact the hardware donations team.
The DSA sprint was made possible by donations to Debian and by Varnish Software who hosted it and provided food and drink. Thank you!

"Fascinating": a Debian based tricorder

Peter Jansen, a cognitive science researcher, brought to life Spock's tricorder from the popular Star Trek television series. Peter, in fact, developed a handheld device able — thanks to its embedded sensors — to measure various environmental parameters (like temperature, humidity, magnetic fields, etc.). The device runs Debian GNU/Linux on an ARM920T-based Atmel microcontroller: the hardware specifications and schematics, and the software are licensed respectively under TAPR non-commercial and GPL 3 and are available on the project website.

So long, and thanks for all the news

The year was 2006. The place: Oaxtepec, Mexico. The event: DebConf6. This is how the Publicity team was born, during a BoF titled "Representing Debian". And among others there were two Debian contributors (who later became Debian Developers), Alexander Schmehl and Meike Reichle. If you are a regular reader of Debian Project News, or a contributor to the Publicity Team, you'll surely recognize their names: they worked every day for the last six years to bring us news about the Debian world and to announce important changes inside the project. Alexander and Meike have now decided to step down from the Press and Publicity team and start another, different adventure. The Publicity Team would like to thank them for their tireless effort, their creativity and their inspiring work.
So long, and thanks for all the news!

Interviews

Raphaël Hertzog published a "People behind Debian" interview with Jörg Jaspert (FTPmaster, Debian Account Manager, and more), while Petter Reinholdtsen interviewed John Ingleby for his "Debian Edu interviews" series.

The newsletter for the Debian community

In addition, Chris Woolfrey interviewed Guido Günther. Zlatan Todorić interviewed Joey Hess about his participation at DebConf11, held last August in Banja Luka.

Other news

Stefan Fritsch posted some bits from the Apache Maintainers announcing some changes — a new set of packaging guidelines, a recent major Apache HTTPD upgrade, and an upcoming package transition.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Tue Mar 20 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

On 2 March, Kurt Roeckx, current Debian Project Secretary, sent the call for nominations for the 2012 Debian Project Leader elections. Unlike last year, when Stefano Zacchiroli was the only candidate, this year three candidates will be running for DPL: Wouter Verhelst, Gergely Nagy and the current DPL Stefano Zacchiroli.
The campaigning period has already started and will end on 31 March: the candidates' platforms are already available. You can follow the campaign on the debian-vote mailing list, where the prospective leaders reply to voters' questions. The voting period will start on 1 April and end on 14 April.

First "Squeeze"-based Debian Edu released

The first "Squeeze"-based version of Debian Edu was released last week. Debian Edu (aka "Skolelinux") is a Debian Pure Blend specifically targeted at schools and other educational institutions, and provides a completely configured school network environment out of the box.
Petter Reinholdtsen started a series of blogposts dedicated to Debian Edu / Skolelinux, which will include interviews with Debian Edu users and administrators and explanations of the team's workflows.

Updated Debian 5.0: 5.0.10 released

The Debian project is pleased to announce the tenth and final update of its oldstable distribution, Debian 5.0 (codename "Lenny"). This update mainly adds corrections for security problems to the oldstable release, along with a few adjustments for other serious problems. Security advisories were already published separately and are referenced where available.

Reports from recent Bug Squashing Parties

Jonathan Wiltshire sent a report from the Bug Squashing Party held over the weekend of 2–4 March in Cambridge. The BSP was a success: eighteen developers and contributors worked on 170 bugs, closing 45 bugs and adding further information for 16 bugs. Manuel Montecelo closed the oldest bug, opened in 2005, while Neil Williams, requesting the removal of opensync and associated packages, closed 25 bugs by a single action.
Paul Wise reported on the Perth Bug Squashing Party held over the weekend of 10–11 March. During the weekend about 10 people worked on 12 bugs, focusing on the release critical bugs highlighted by rc-alert.

Announcing gobby.debian.org

Philipp Kern announced the availability of a "Gobby" server hosted by Debian. Gobby is a realtime collaborative editor which works as a standalone desktop application. To use it, install the gobby-0.5 package and then just connect to the server at gobby.debian.org.

The Debian Kernel Team rocks!

In a recent article, Stefano Zacchiroli pointed out how much the Debian Kernel Team is contributing to upstream. Not only can members of the team often be spotted among the most active contributors to specific Linux releases, but they were also publicly thanked by Greg Kroah-Hartman, current Linux kernel maintainer for the -stable branch, with these words: "I would personally like to thank the Debian kernel developers, specifically Ben Hutchings, Maximilian Attems, Dann Frazier, Bastian Blank, and Moritz Muehlenhoff. They went above and beyond what any "normal" developer would have done, ferreting patches out of the kernel.org releases and the different vendor kernels and bug tracking systems, backporting them to the 2.6.32 kernel, testing, and then forwarding them on to me. Their dedication to their user community is amazing for such a "volunteer" group of developers. I firmly believe that without their help, the 2.6.32 kernel would not have been the success that it was. The users of Red Hat and SuSE products owe them a great debt."

Interviews

Raphaël Hertzog published a "People behind Debian" interview with Gregor Herrmann (member of the Perl team).

Other news

Enrico Zini announced the new website for the New Members process. The new site is the result of a major re-design of the backend database carried out at a recent meeting.

The newsletter for the Debian community

Stefano Zacchiroli sent his monthly report on DPL activities.

The newsletter for the Debian community

published on Mon Mar 5 00:00:00 2012 in weekly-news

Welcome to this year's fifth issue of DPN, the newsletter for the Debian community. Topics covered in this issue include:

Rebuild of the Debian archive with clang

Sylvestre Ledru performed a study that rebuilt the Debian archive using clang, a new C/C++/Objective-C compiler. The goal was to evaluate the current capabilities of clang for compilation and C/C++/objective-C support. Results are available on the Debian clang web pages.

Debian Peru revival

Rudy Godoy blogged about a revival of the Debian Peru local group. The Debian Peru users group was founded in 2004 and was quite active in spreading the word about Debian and Free Software, but then slowed down its activity. However, in the two last weeks, the group has become active again and they're planning various events and meetings aimed at helping people to contribute to Debian. You can find more information in the group wiki page or on their mailing list.

DebConf11 final report is out

The DebConf organisation team released the final report of the 2011 Debian Conference, which was held in Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina. The report can be downloaded from the DebConf media website.
In related news, the DebConf committee decided that DebConf13 will take place in Switzerland, likely in the middle of August. The Swiss bid narrowly won over the bid from Riga, Latvia.

Debian Utsav

Shirish Agarwal reported on the Debian Utsav which took place in Pune last month. "Debian Utsav is celebration of Debian folks — meet at one place, eat, drink and work on Debian!" as Praveen — one of the main organisers — explained in an announcement message. During the meeting there were some interesting talks and workshops, such as "Debian history", "What goes on in making Debian" and "Introducing to packaging".

Other news

The 29th issue of the miscellaneous news for developers has been released and covers the following topics:

Upcoming events

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.