Welcome to this year's fourteenth issue of DPN, the newsletter for the Debian community. Topics covered in this issue include:
sloppybackports suite for stable Debian Lenny
Four Dayspromise for Debian Mentorees
After the release team recently met in Paris they published meeting
minutes and gave a release update. Aside from updating the documentation
for point releases and deciding about the future of the volatile archive, a major topic
was the progress of the upcoming release of Debian 6.0
They called for content for the release notes, which should document all
potential problems during an upgrade. They also noted that all transitions
have been done and named the current blockers of the release: A bug in udev, which might cause
problems during upgrades (a patch has been proposed in the meantime); a
problem in the preinstallation
script of dash (a patch has been proposed and is currently
investigated); the debian-installer must finish it's work on its final
release; the Release Notes: have proper documentation for Squeeze installs
and upgrades and finally must the security archive support the new source
All in all the release team hopes to have these blockers sorted out by the end of October, which would allow a release before Christmas. The release also points out that the help of everyone is needed to get this accomplished, be it by squashing the remaining bugs, provided facilities for real life bug squashing parties, write on the release notes or support translations.
Some real live bug squashing parties have already been announced for Paris and Bern.
With the help of the Shapado Project members of the Debian project started a new user oriented service at ask.debian.net. Users can easily ask specific questions and find answers, while also providing rating systems and badges for users. It also allows Debian Developers and other Contributors to easily stay in touch with the community.
The DebianEdu Project has released an updated version of its Debian Pure Blend targeting Schools and similar environments. This update includes an updated installer to support new hardware as well as various bugfixes and documentation improvements. Other notable changes are improvements of sitesummary where several Nagios checks have been added to monitor system health as well as a fix for shutdown-at-night.
sloppybackports suite for stable Debian Lenny
Gerfried Fuchs from Debian's Backport Team announced a new suite on
backports for Debian Lenny:
lenny-backports-sloppy. Its usage is
similar to the regular backports suite, but there's a major difference
between regarding the contents of the suites: While users of the normal
backport suite can expect to update without major problems to the next
Debian stable release (as it only contains backports of the next
following distribution). Users of the newly created backport suite may need
to take special precausions, as the backports of the sloppy suite are not
restricted to come from the next distribution but from the second-next.
The new suite thus may also contain newer packages (e.g. during the
freeze already from the
unstable branch). It therefore allows
users to easily access newer versions of packages, but users can
not just upgrade to the following stable release but will at least need to
also use the corresponding regular backport suite for packages from the
After Debian Project Leader Stefano Zacchiroli proposed general resolution about non-packaging Debian project memebers this resolution is currently voted on. If it passes it would invites Debian's Account Managers to establish procedures to evaluate and accept non-packaging contributors to the project including full voting rights. Non-packaging contributors include for example documentation writers and translators.
In related news, Enrico Zini from the New Maintainer Frontdesk sent a
from mail. He welcomed Xavier Oswald as full member of the
Frontdesk and noted that applicants to become Debian Developers will need
stronger GPG keys from now on. Following the recent bits from the keyring
maintainers, the usage of 1024 bit DSA keys is discouraged.
Joey Hess blogged about a hybrid debian-installer for USB and optical discs. While it was possible to boot debian-installers from USB sticks for quite some time, the procedure to make such an bootable usb-stick have been quite difficult. The new hybrid iso image can be burned to CDs as well as simply raw-copied (cat-ed) to USB devices. It is also very easy to add additonal firmwares. Joey also notices, that due to problems with the jigdo templates; currently only a minimal hybrid image is created, but points out, that it is very easy to make the existing ISO images suitable for USB sticks by using the isohybrid comand from the syslinux package oneselves.
Is it news worthy if packages, even popular ones like the chromium web
browser get removed or added to the Debian's
Debian Project Leader Stefano Zacchiroli declines
and points out that Chromium is a good example for the non-news-worthy-ness
of these things. It had been removed from Debian's testing branch, causing
a media fuss and quite some critics, as it appeared, that Chromium would
not be part of the next stable release. However, as the release critical
bugs have been fixed, the package was allowed back again. Which is -
according to Stefano - actually not news-worthy either.
Four Dayspromise for Debian Mentorees
Are you interested to know why other people use Debian? No problem! Debian maintains a list of Debian users ranging from govermental or educational institutions up to dozens of companies, of which suprisingly not all are IT related. Fernando C. Estrada summarized some of the entries and their reason. You can send us new submissions via e-mail.
Why do people contribute to Debian? Long term Debian Developer Raphaël Hertzog tried to answer that often asked question by summarizing his personal main motives to contribute to Debian: Technical excellence, Inspiring goals, High impact work, Working with great people and Recognition of work.
Arnt Ove Gregersen created a female version of the DebianEdu / Skolelinux mascot.
The 600000th bug has been reported to Debian bug tracking system. The results for the bet on the date of this bug have been published and a bet on the submission date of Debian's 700000th bug has been opened.
The Debian Project has been invited to the Society for Neuroscience meeting 2010 in San Diegeo and will be present with a booth there.
Debian Project Leader Stefano Zacchiroli appointed an additional Debian Auditor: Martin Michlmayr joins Luk Claes.
5 applicants have been accepted as Debian Developers and 7 applicants has been accepted as Debian Maintainer and 13 people started to maintain packages since the previous issue of the Debian Project News. Please welcome Salvatore Bonaccorso, Jeffrey Ratcliffe, Deepak Tripathi, Michael Schutte, Ansgar Burchardt, Federico Ceratto, Tanguy Ortolo, Jonathan Yu, Mats Erik Andersson, Ryan Kavanagh, Stefan Bauer, Stuart Prescott, Andreas Noteng, gustavo panizzo, Julien Jehannet, Kevin Roy, Marek Brudka, Richard Holland, David Hannequin, John Feuerstein, Hans-Christoph Steiner, James Goppert, John Stumpo, Nicolas Bonnefon and Mònica Ramírez Arceda into our project!
According to the bug
webinterface of the Ultimate Debian Database, the upcoming release,
Squeeze, is currently affected by
327 release-critical bugs. Ignoring bugs which are easily solved
or on the way to being solved, roughly speaking, about
130 release-critical bugs remain to be solved for the
release to happen.
There are also more detailed statistics as well as some hints on how to interpret these numbers.
Debian's Security Team recently released advisories for these packages (among others): freetype, apr-util, subversion, moodle (updated advisory), poppler, postgresql-8.3, Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.
Debian's Backports Team releases advisories for these packages: subversion, postgresql-8.4, dovecot, Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.
Please note that these are a selection of the more important security advisories of the last weeks. If you need to be kept up to date about security advisories released by the Debian Security Team, please subscribe to the security mailing list (and the sepparate backports list) for announcements.
The following packages were added to the unstable Debian archive recently (among others):
Please note that due to the freeze of the upcoming
Squeeze acceptance of new packages has almost ceased.
Please help us create this newsletter. We still need more volunteer writers to watch the Debian community and report about what is going on. Please see the contributing page to find out how to help. We're looking forward to receiving your mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.#use wml::debian::projectnews::footer editor="XXX, XXX, Alexander Reichle-Schmehl"