Debian Weekly News - July 16th, 2002
Jul 17, 2002, 07:00 (0 Talkback[s])
Debian Weekly News
Debian Weekly News - July 16th, 2002
Welcome to this year's 27th issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for
the Debian community. This week we received an article from
somebody who switched back from GNU/Linux and another article that
lists major alleged deficiencies of GNU/Linux. They may contain
problems from a users point of view, which developers take care of. If
you want to know what happens when Debian geeks are bored on IRC, read
GNU/Linux Team Fighting? The FIFA World Cup 2002 in Korea and Japan
ended on June 30, 2002. Surprisingly, the Korean Republic impressed
everybody in the world in both soccer game and supporters power (i.e.
Red Devils). Before the end, an interesting fun image was posted
on the news group han.comp.os.linux.advocacy/. This kind of parody
is based on "Korea Team Fighting" which means "Go Korea Team".
Penguins, Gnu, Chameleon and Dragonfly are displayed in the Korean
soccer team uniform.
DebConf 2 successfully finished. The third Debian Conference, this
year held in York, Canada, is over. Thanks go out to Joe Drew for
hosting the conference. He has already posted some of his
experiences. Michael Cardenas from Lindows.com also wrote a
report and James Treacy took a bunch of pictures. Tollef Fog
Heen created a list of some of the different presentations.
Debian on your Cellular Phone? No, it won't run Debian. At least, it
won't run it at the moment, but we'll better check what processors
future cellular phones will be built upon. Christian Wenke played
with scmxx, which exchanges data with Siemens mobile phones, such
as logos, address books short messages etc. The Debian logo included
in that package is useful for large screens only, but Christian
created one for small displays (like for the M25i or S35i), based
on the image from onShore. Christian provided the commandline
required for uploading the image to your phone.
What Packages need to go into Non-US? Matt Kraai asked which
packages still have to go into the non-US repository. Free software
that makes use of cryptographic methods may be uploaded into the
main archive already, however, non-free software, that uses
cryptography, must not. The non-US repository also contains program
code which needs to be stored on a non-US server because of United
Hewlett-Packard chooses Debian. Robert McMillan wrote in Linux
Magazine about HP announcing plans to standardize its internal Linux
development on one distribution: Debian. Cnet also featured a similar
article, which itself is based on a message from Bruce Perens
from May 2001, in which he announced that HP choose Debian as the
selected development platform (among others) for their Linux work.
Bruce explains that the Debian Free Software Guidelines (DFSG) are
a critical component used for that reasoning.
Debian Mini-Conf in January. The upcoming Linux Conference
Australia (LCA) will host a miniature DebConf on January 20th and
21st, two days prior to LCA. The Debian part will be organized by
Jonathan Oxer, who has already set up a preliminary schedule and
is looking for interesting talks and presentations. If you would like
to attend this Mini-Conf, please check the above page.
New Stable Revision Released. Joey finally got around and released
another revision (r7) of Debian GNU/Linux 2.2 (codename `potato').
This revision adds 12 more security updates to the stable distribution
of Debian, covering packages like analog, Apache, CUPS, IMP/Horde,
listar, sudo and UUCP. A few important corrections were added as well,
which cover packages like erlang, qpopper and vrweb. See the
preparation page for details.
Rendez-vouz with Ian Jackson. Robert McQueen interviewed Ian
Jackson for DebianPlanet, a Debian member since the early days. He
joined the Debian effort, because he got fed up of maintaining his
system by hand (a common reason, together with the sophisticated
ideology behind the project, by the way). Ian explains how dpkg was
introduced and how he believes that package maintenance should
interact with a user frontend.
Creating a Free Font. Dustin Norlander, an amateur font designer,
contacted the Debian people, seeking help with licensing a new
font family which should be considered a free font with regards to the
DFSG. Jim Gettys asserted that it might be wise to retain
control of the name of the font, even while allowing other derivative
works. This way there won't exist conflicting versions of the same
font using the same name. David Starner raised some important
questions, though, which remained unanswered.
Checking Package Integrity? Jakub Turski wondered if it currently
was possible to add a malicious package to the main ftp site and
nobody noticing this? Anthony Towns pointed to a script that
checks signatures and checksums. Colin Watson added that the
ftpmaster's key needs to be added to the trustedkeys.gpg files
instead of the regular pubkey.gpg file.
Sending Patches Upstream? Mateusz Papiernik wondered whether
patches to Debian packages, which fix bugs, should be sent upstream as
well. Simon Law answered that we want upstream packages to be
bug-free, too. That said, all useful patches, which make Debian
packages more stable, less bugfree, improve their portability etc.,
should be sent upstream as well.
Glibc up for Adoption. Ben Collins announced that he doesn't have
the time to work properly on the GNU C library. Hence, he's looking
for one developer with shitloads of time and skill, or a team of 2-3
with average time, and good skills. The library requires an extra
amount of clue, so as not to break the 11+ architectures that depend
on it to work perfectly. Ben would love to see binutils, gcc and glibc
maintained by a single coordinated team, and the three built in some
sort of bootstrap setup.
Debian at Webb.it 2002. Federico Di Gregorio sent in a report
about the Webb.it 2002 event in Padova, Italy. Federico says that
almost 40 % of the people coming to the booth never heard of Debian or
Free Software before. Hence, it was a pleasure to talk to them and
explain about our philosophy. The report also contains links to three
New or Noteworthy Packages. The following packages were added to the
Debian archive recently or contain important updates. Aside from the
following packages, a lot of kernel and port specific packages were
included (such as legacy utilities for powerpc and m68k machines and a
lot of Hurd packages).
* mls -- MailListStat displays statistics about mailbox files.
* numlockx -- Control the state of NumLock.
* php4-pear-log -- Log module for PEAR.
* tlf -- Console mode purpose CW keyer, logging- and contest
Orphaned Packages. One package was orphaned this week and requires a
new maintainer. This makes a total of 83 orphaned packages. Many
thanks to the previous maintainer who contributed to the Free Software
community. Please see the WNPP pages for the full list, and please
add a note to the bug report and retitle it to ITA: if you plan to
take over a package.
* aethera -- Email and PIM application for KDE. (Bug#152941)
Seen something interesting? Please drop us a note whenever you see
something noteworthy that you think is appropriate for inclusion in
DWN. We don't notice everything, unfortunately. Of course, we are also
thankful for completely written items from volunteer writers. Please
see the contributing page. We're looking forward to receiving your
mail at email@example.com.