Debian Weekly News - January 10th, 2006

Welcome to this year's 2nd issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for the Debian community. Jeroen van Wolffelaar reported that has been disabled due to performance issues. Neil McGovern called for sponsorship requests for active Debian people for the last time for the upcoming Debian Conference.

Status of non-free Firmware. Sven Luther explained the status of non-free firmware blobs in the Debian Linux kernel. Some of them have been relicensed and are redistributable again, others have been separated from the kernel into userland to be used by the request_firmware infrastructure. Steve Langasek plans to start a general resolution to decide whether Debian requires the source code for firmware blobs.

FOSDEM Booth for Debian. Wouter Verhelst is looking for volunteers to help man the booth at the upcoming FOSDEM conference. He is also interested in suggestions for something they could show at the booth. The Debian project will also have a developers room in which talks will be held.

Bits from the Release Team. Andreas Barth reported about the expectations of the release team for 2006 which includes to release etch at the beginning of December. He asked to take more care about release critical bugs now and to be careful when performing non-maintainer uploads. The essential toolchain and kernels will be frozen at the end of July.

New Technical Committee Members. After extensive consultation with the existing members of the technical committee and earlier resignations of Wichert Akkerman, Jason Gunthorpe, and Guy Maor Branden Robinson has appointed Steve Langasek, Anthony Towns, and Andreas Barth as new members of the technical committee.

Stable Aliases for CD Drives. Marco d'Itri reported that the convenient /dev/cdrom symlink will not be supported anymore. Joey Hess added that this link needs to be available in an installed system for APT to work properly with a local CD attached. Adrian von Bidder stated that similarly stable Ethernet interface names which suddenly become unstable after an upgrade are not funny.

Debian Archive Split and AMD64 Integration? Martin Zobel-Helas asked about the status of the archive split and the integration of the AMD64 port. Anthony Towns mentioned the archive split that prevents AMD64 from being integrated into the normal Debian development environment earlier already. New patches need to be tested.

GnuPG Error during Upgrade. Bernd Prager noticed that upgrading Debian fails with a missing key error since a new archive key is used for signing. Lee Chinook provided the path to the new key and the instructions to incorporate it.

Obsoleted Package: xlibs-dev. David Nusinow announced that with the upload of 6.9 to unstable the xlibs-dev metapackage is no longer built. As a result many packages fail to build until their build dependencies have been adjusted to list only the required libraries. Since all such libraries are also available in sarge the packages can still be backported easily.

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.

Orphaned Packages. 1 package was orphaned this week and requires a new maintainer. This makes a total of 166 orphaned packages. Many thanks to the previous maintainers 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.

Removed Packages. 9 packages have been removed from the Debian archive during the past week:

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This issue of Debian Weekly News was edited by Martin 'Joey' Schulze.