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Debian Weekly News - July 22, 2003

Jul 23, 2003, 05:30 (0 Talkback[s])

Debian Weekly News
Debian Weekly News - July 22nd, 2003

Welcome to this year's 29th issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for the Debian community. Linus Torvalds is working on pre-releases of Linux 2.6, Joseph Pranevich published the [1]Wonderful World of Linux 2.6, so maybe it will be released in time for sarge.

1. http://www.kniggit.net/wwol26.html

Creating Debian Packages. Joe 'Zonker' Brockmeier, a former DWN editor, published an [2]article that describes the basics of creating Debian packages for distributing programs and source code. The article shows all the necessary components of a package and how to put them together to end up with a final product.

2. http://www-106.ibm.com/developerworks/linux/library/l-debpkg.html

LinuxTag Success. This year's LinuxTag, which took place in Karlsruhe, Germany, was a great [3]success. With more than 19,500 visitors, this year's LinuxTag has become the largest Linux event in the world. Amongst other things, the Debian developers in attendance got [4]together for dinner with both the KDE people and the GNOME people.

3. http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=03/07/15/018235
4. http://dot.kde.org/1058415564/

ServerBeach ships Debian GNU/Linux Servers. [5]SeverBeach [6]announced the availability of their [7]Starter Servers and Power Servers with Debian GNU/Linux preinstalled. Many customers want and appreciate the two driving forces behind Debian - technical excellence and the commitment to Free Software, said Richard Yoo, Big Kahuna, ServerBeach.

5. http://www.serverbeach.com/
6. http://thewhir.com/marketwatch/ser071603.cfm
7. http://www.serverbeach.com/catalog/debian_servers.php

Debian Free Software Guidelines FAQ. Barak Pearlmutter [8]composed a draft Debian Free Software Guidelines (DFSG) [9]FAQ. It is meant as an introduction to issues discussed on the [10]debian-legal mailing list, with some general background material to help bring new readers up to date. Suggestions and comments are welcome.

8. http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal-0307/msg00122.html
9. http://people.debian.org/~bap/dfsg-faq.html
10. http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal/

LGPL affecting Client Java Code? [11]According to this [12]article, Dave Turner of the FSF has decreed that the steps required to use an LGPL'd Java library will actually infect client code with substantial GNU-ness via Section 6 of the LGPL. (The "Lesser" GPL is supposed to protect only the Library, without infecting code using the library) This, as you might imagine, puts a few LGPL Java projects that previously thought they were embeddable without being viral in a bit of a bind. [13]Various [14]weblogs have [15]further [16]coverage.

11. http://slashdot.org/developers/03/07/17/2257224.shtml
12. http://article.gmane.org/gmane.comp.jakarta.poi.devel/5900
13. http://linuxintegrators.com/hl30/blog/general/?permalink=LGPL+clarification.html
14. http://www.rollerweblogger.org/page/roller/20030716#for_java_lgpl_is_viral
15. http://www.intertwingly.net/blog/1519.html
16. http://radio.weblogs.com/0122027/2003/07/16.html#a56

Missing Timestamp Handling. Marcin Owsiany [17]reported that when a source package is unpacked, all the files that have modifications in the diff.gz file are given somewhat "random" timestamps, because patch updates their timestamps as it processes the diff file. This causes problems for packages that rebuild their Makefiles on demand but don't build-depend on autotools.

17. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-0307/msg01258.html

Libpng Transition Status. Josselin Mouette [18]reported that 84 binary packages are left over which should be rebuilt before sarge releases. However, none is essential, but he insists that the more of those are rebuilt, the less issues we will have later when libpng changes its soname again. The list of packages is attached to Josselin's mail.

18. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-0307/msg01271.html

Debian Packages in a Chart. Bram Stolk [19]announced that he has created a [20]software map of Debian packages. The chart depicts all packages from testing/main with 5 or more dependencies. Instead of visualizing the dependencies directly, a classification has been made.

19. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-0307/msg01302.html
20. http://home.sara.nl/~bram/debchart.png

Working without a Release Roadmap? Adrian Bunk [21]reported that the software in Debian 3.0 is currently roughly one and a half years old. He adds that one release a year is badly needed and that a big system like Debian doesn't become stable without a plan how to get it stable. He is willing to help in QA and/or release management if this results in a new stable release within clearly less than a year.

21. http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-0307/msg01402.html

Unicode Character Database. Florian Weimer [22]reported that many packages that include a copy of parts of the Unicode Character Database do not indicate the source and are thus violating its license. Thomas Bushnell [23]added that the next release of GNU miscfiles will include a version which is really free.

22. http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal-0307/msg00056.html
23. http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal-0307/msg00071.html

Creating Manpages from GNU FDL Documentation. Hans Fugal [24]wondered if he is permitted to create a manpage from documentation that is released under the [25]GNU Free Documentation License (FDL) and which requirement he has to meet. Walter Landry [26]answered with a detailed ten-item list.

24. http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal-0307/msg00106.html
25. http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html
26. http://lists.debian.org/debian-legal-0307/msg00108.html

Improving CD Mirrors. Mattias Wadenstein [27]summarised suggestions for the CD Image server and mirrors. The plan is to provide both images and jigdo files of CDs as well as testing images. There was also a request for a contrib-directory for [28]Knoppix or a few more Knoppix mirrors in US.

27. http://lists.debian.org/debian-cd-0307/msg00030.html
28. http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/

GNU/Linux as Commodity Software. Tim O'Reilly was interviewed about the keynote at his company's Open Source Convention he gave. During the [29]interview he hints that Debian founder Ian Murdock and his company Progeny Linux Systems, Inc., have the right stuff for the future of computing. Instead of seeing GNU/Linux as a product, he sees GNU/Linux as a set of commodity software components he can put together for different purposes.

29. http://www.idg.com.sg/idgwww.nsf/unidlookup/363EE97CE7BBBBD848256D59000986BF?OpenDocument

Security Updates. You know the drill. Please make sure that you update your systems if you have any of these packages installed.

New or Noteworthy Packages. The following packages were added to the unstable Debian archive recently or contain important updates.

  • [31]chiark-backup -- Backup system for small systems and networks.
  • [32]chiark-really -- Tool for gaining privilege (simple, realistic sudo).
  • [33]chiark-rwbuffer -- Readbuffer/writebuffer: prevents tape drive seesawing, etc.
  • [34]chiark-scripts -- Chiark system administration scripts.
  • [35]chiark-utils-bin -- Chiark system administration utilities.
  • [36]ettercap -- Multipurpose sniffer/interceptor/logger for switched LAN.
  • [37]i810switch -- Enables/disables video output to CRT/LCD on i810 video hardware.
  • [38]pydance -- Dancing simulation game.
  • [39]sredird -- RFC 2217 compliant Telnet serial port redirector.
31. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/chiark-backup.html
32. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/admin/chiark-really.html
33. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/chiark-rwbuffer.html
34. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/admin/chiark-scripts.html
35. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/chiark-utils-bin.html
36. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/net/ettercap.html
37. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/i810switch.html
38. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/games/pydance.html
39. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/comm/sredird.html

Orphaned Packages. 10 packages were orphaned this week and require a new maintainer. This makes a total of 204 orphaned packages. Many thanks to the previous maintainers who contributed to the Free Software community. Please see the [40]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.

40. http://www.debian.org/devel/wnpp/

  • [41]animals -- Traditional AI animal guessing engine using a binary tree DB. ([42]Bug#202174)
  • [43]cgiwrap -- Allows ordinary users to run their own CGI scripts. ([44]Bug#202172)
  • [45]gtkgraph -- Interactive function-plotter/calculator. ([46]Bug#202228)
  • [47]int-fiction -- Support files for interactive fiction interpreters. ([48]Bug#201408)
  • [49]members -- Shows the members of a group; by default, all members. ([50]Bug#202171)
  • [51]mwavem -- Mwave/ACP modem support. ([52]Bug#202227)
  • [53]nwrite -- Enhanced replacement for the write command. ([54]Bug#202238)
  • [55]pup -- Printer Utility Program. ([56]Bug#202232)
  • [57]xcal -- Graphical calendar with memos and reminder alarms. ([58]Bug#202226)
  • [59]xflip -- Programs to mirror-image or melt your display. ([60]Bug#202230)
41. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/games/animals.html
42. http://bugs.debian.org/202174
43. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/web/cgiwrap.html
44. http://bugs.debian.org/202172
45. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/math/gtkgraph.html
46. http://bugs.debian.org/202228
47. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/games/int-fiction.html
48. http://bugs.debian.org/201408
49. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/admin/members.html
50. http://bugs.debian.org/202171
51. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/mwavem.html
52. http://bugs.debian.org/202227
53. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/nwrite.html
54. http://bugs.debian.org/202238
55. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/utils/pup.html
56. http://bugs.debian.org/202232
57. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/misc/xcal.html
58. http://bugs.debian.org/202226
59. http://packages.debian.org/unstable/games/xflip.html
60. http://bugs.debian.org/202230

Want to continue reading DWN? Please help us create this newsletter. We still need more volunteer writers who investigate the Debian community and report about events in the community. Please see the [61]contributing page to find out how to help. We're looking forward to receiving your mail at [62]dwn@debian.org.

61. http://www.debian.org/News/weekly/contributing
62. mailto:dwn@debian.org

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