Debian Weekly News - February 28th, 2006
Welcome to this year's 9th issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for the Debian community. Lars Wirzenius de-nominated himself from the upcoming project leader election due to aspects and parts of the project that he can't emotionally deal with. In a former article he already investigated the role of the project leader and came to the conclusion that the important thing is to inspire and not to force.
Call for Votes for the GFDL Position Statement. Manoj Srivastava called for votes on a General Resolution to address the Debian project's position on the GNU Free Documentation License. The result of this vote will affect the way the Debian projects handles documentation released under this particular license. The vote distinguishes between works with and without invariant sections.
Implementing the Mirror Split. Anthony Towns announced that ftp.debian.org will soon stop including a number of architectures for etch (testing) and sid (unstable). Since the total size of the archive is currently 170 GB official mirrors don't have to include the entire archive anymore. A special rsync module allows mirror admins to mirror the entire archive if they like to, though.
Debian Project Leader Election 2006. Manoj Srivastava announced the candidates for this year's project leader election: Jeroen van Wolffelaar, Ari Pollak, Steve McIntyre, Anthony Towns, Andreas Schuldei, Jonathan Walther, and Bill Allombert. The platforms for these candidates will be published as soon as they are available. Don Armstrong and Thaddeus H. Black have agreed to be debate chairs.
Inclusion of the AMD64 Architecture. Anthony Towns noted that various changes have been made to create Packages files in unstable, experimental and testing to support future amd64 uploads. In a couple of weeks when the mirror split transition is over, the amd64 autobuilder will get all packages rebuilt.
Weekly Polls and Social Pressure. Raphaël Hertzog proposed to run weekly polls on various issues, including social problems, which could be used as a basis for listmasters. Those polls should give a pretty good overview of the current opinion inside the project. Alberto Gonzalez Iniesta opposed this idea and MJ Ray considered this a bad idea that will lead to improper decisions.
Non-Maintainer Upload Policy. Mike Hommey wondered if it is still good practice to notify the maintainer before doing a non-maintainer upload. Eric Dorland quoted Andreas Barth and confirmed that developers are still required to notify the maintainer via the bug tracking system before uploading.
Essential Python Packages? Eric Cooper noticed that python-minimal is installed as an essential package. Matthias Klose explained that this was done as preparation for a later change in the package. Anthony Towns has reverted this in the meantime since it drags in most of the python distribution in Debian.
Security Updates. You know the drill. Please make sure that you update your systems if you have any of these packages installed.
- DSA 980: tutos -- Multiple vulnerabilities.
- DSA 981: bmv -- Arbitrary code execution.
- DSA 982: gpdf -- Several vulnerabilities.
- DSA 983: pdftohtml -- Several vulnerabilities.
New or Noteworthy Packages. The following packages were added to the unstable Debian archive recently or contain important updates.
- autopkgtest -- Automatic as-installed testing for Debian packages.
- banshee-daap -- Audio Management and Playback application (DAAP sharing plugin).
- bdf2psf -- Font converter to generate console fonts from BDF source fonts.
- c3270 -- Curses program for telnet sessions to IBM mainframes.
- checkgmail -- Alternative Gmail Notifier for Linux via Atom feeds.
- console-setup -- Setup the font and the keyboard on the console.
- dssi-utils -- Command-line utilities for sending commands to DSSI plugins.
- gdmap -- Tool to visualise disk-space.
- gphotofs -- Filesystem to mount digital cameras.
- gsynaptics -- Configuration tool for Synaptics touchpad driver of X server.
- gxineplugin -- Xine video player, GTK+/Gnome; launcher plugin for Mozilla.
- horde-sam -- Spam module for Horde Framework.
- inputlirc -- Zeroconf LIRC daemon using input event devices.
- itrans -- Converts romanised Indic texts to Latex, HTML & Postscript.
- kpicosim -- IDE and simulator for the Xilinx PicoBlaze-3.
- kvpnc -- VPN clients frontend for KDE.
- lastfm -- Audio player for last.fm personalised radio.
- metacity-common -- Shared files of lightweight GTK2 based Window Manager.
- moto4lin -- File manager and seem editor for Motorola phones (like C380/C650).
- mpc123 -- Command-line Musepack audio player.
- mpt-status -- Get RAID status out of mpt (and other) HW RAID controllers.
- nagios2 -- Host/service/network monitoring and management system.
- pfqueue -- Interactive console-based tool to control MTA queues.
- playground -- GNOME applet that lets you control basic functions of audio players.
- pr3287 -- IBM 3287 printer emulation for telnet sessions to IBM mainframes.
- s3270 -- Program for scripted telnet sessions to IBM mainframes.
- singularity -- Game where one becomes the singularity.
- suspend2-userui -- User-space interfaces for software suspend2.
- sysconfig-hardware -- Hardware configuration.
- tioga -- Ruby library for scientific graphs.
- x3270 -- X11 program for telnet sessions to IBM mainframes.
- xcftools -- Command-line tools for extracting data for XCF files.
- xulrunner -- XUL + XPCOM application runner.
- yics -- Yahoo! Chess client for use with FICS interfaces.
Orphaned Packages. 26 packages were orphaned this week and require a new maintainer. This makes a total of 239 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.
- c-sig -- Signature tool for GNU Emacs. (Bug#353621)
- edb -- Database program for GNU Emacs. (Bug#353629)
- elisp-manual-ja -- Japanese version of Emacs Lisp Reference Manual. (Bug#353625)
- emacs-lisp-intro-ja -- Japanese version of "Programming in Emacs Lisp: An Introduction". (Bug#353628)
- emacs-manual-ja -- Japanese version of the GNU Emacs Manual. (Bug#353624)
- ftpmirror -- Mirroring directory hierarchy with FTP. (Bug#353635)
- gnome-ppp -- Modem Internet connection tool for GNOME. (Bug#353397)
- goobox -- CD player and ripper for GNOME. (Bug#353398)
- libsufary-ruby -- SUFARY module for Ruby 1.6. (Bug#353632)
- libxml-sablot-perl -- Encapsulation of the Sablotron XSL processor. (Bug#354500)
- manued-el -- Minor mode for manued proofreading method. (Bug#353620)
- mimedecode -- Decodes transfer encoded text type mime messages. (Bug#354177)
- mrt -- Multi-threaded Routing Toolkit (BGP4+/BGP/RIPng/RIP2). (Bug#354497)
- psys -- P-system emulation libraries for Chipmunk tools. (Bug#354496)
- rig -- Random identity generator. (Bug#353394)
- skk -- SKK Dictionary server. (Bug#353627)
- skktools -- SKK dictionary maintenance tools. (Bug#353633)
- spim -- MIPS R2000/R3000 emulator. (Bug#354501)
- src2tex -- Converter from source program files to TeX format files. (Bug#353619)
- sufary -- Perl module for SUFARY. (Bug#353626)
- swingwt -- Swing/AWT API. (Bug#354632)
- trr19 -- Type training software on GNU Emacs. (Bug#353623)
- wap-wml-tools -- Wireless Markup Language development and test tools. (Bug#354502)
- windows-el -- Window manager for GNU Emacs. (Bug#353634)
- xbatt -- Display battery status. (Bug#353622)
- xevil -- Violent side-scrolling game for X. (Bug#353389)
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This issue of Debian Weekly News was edited by Martin 'Joey' Schulze.