Welcome to Debian Weekly News, a newsletter for the Debian
It's time to think about freezes, and releases, and all that
nasty stuff again. Anthony Towns posted plans for the upcoming
freeze. He plans to freeze testing in three stages. First the base
system will be frozen and tested. Next the boot-floppies, standard
packages, and tasks will go through a freeze and test cycle of
their own, and finally everything else will be frozen and tested.
This will allow updates to less important packages while the core
of Debian is already frozen, so fewer packages will be out of date
in the final release. Aj included a "theoretical (and overly
optimistic) timeline", spanning some 5 months (and probably
longer), with the first test cycle beginning April-ish. A bug
squashing party will be held on IRC this weekend to begin fixing
release critical bugs.
The boot-floppies team needs help. Adam Di Carlo wrote in,
asking for help on what may be the final revision of the boot
floppies -- for woody -- before the upcoming debian-installer
effort replaces them. According to Adam, "a lot of the 'talent'
have been sucked into debian-installer. I have pretty much no one
helping me right now with boot-floppies maintenance." He included a
list of tasks that need doing to get a usable set of boot floppies
for woody, and concluded, "Please help me out. Otherwise, god knows
when we'll be able to release woody!"
Many of the Debian autobuilders are severely overloaded. Debian
has one machine that does m68k autobuilds, and the poor thing
has to try to keep up with the constant churn of unstable. It is
400+ packages behind now, and has not updated any packages
uploaded to non-US since January 10th. Arm is even further
behind, and sparc is way behind as well. The situation is worse
with respect to non-free: most autobuilders do not build
non-free packages at all, leaving maintainers of non-free with the
difficult chore of manually trying to build it on all
architectures if they want updates to get into testing. M68k
machines are not going to get any faster as the years go by, so we
need to find more m68k machines to use as autobuilders lest the
port slip dangerously behind.
The nomination period for DPL is over, and the candidates have
begin posting platforms. Ben Collins and Branden Robinson
have posted platforms so far. Ben listed some specific issues he
wants to deal with if if elected, including "allowing new
maintainers with less privileges", QA, and a more pro-active stance
on security. Branden, in turn, listed some issues including a more
formalized delegation process, keeping track of unmaintained
packages and MIA developers, and ensuring Debian is well
represented at real-life events.
Unstable lived up to its name again this week, despite (or maybe
because of?) the impending freeze. The latest perl reorganization
went well all and all, but there have been some reports of apt
wanting to remove everything rather than do that upgrade. And
speaking of apt, apt 0.5 just made it into unstable! This major new
revision of apt includes features like "apt-get build-dep", to
download a source package, satisfy build dependencies, and build
it. And it supports the pinning feature, to allow for commands like
"apt-get install mozilla/unstable" (which installs unstable's
version of mozilla onto a testing or stable system). Shoop also
entered Debian this week, but nobody really noticed.
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