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The Debian GNU/Linux FAQ
Chapter 15 - Changes expected in the next major release of Debian

With each new release, the Debian project tries to focus on a set of topics. These are known as "Release Goals" and they are all described in https://wiki.debian.org/ReleaseGoals/. Please note that the following sections might not be fully up-to-date, please refer to the Wiki for more information and the up-to-date status of these goals.

15.1 Hardening the system

It is a goal for the Debian project to ensure that any system installed is hardened and secure against attacks. There are several ways to achieve this, which include:

All of these are done in an ongoing basis. For the first item, a set of security hardening build flags that try to prevent known attacks such as stack smashing, predictable locations of values in memory, etc. The target is to cover at least all packages that are part of the basic installation as well as packages that had to be updated through a Security Advisory since 2006. As of this writting, around 400 packages have been modified since this effort was first started. All the issues are tracked in the BTS.

15.2 Extended support for non-English users

Debian already has very good support for non-English users, see How does Debian support non-English languages?, Section 5.9.

We hope to find people who will provide support for even more languages, and translate programs and documents. Many programs and Debian-specific documents already support internationalization, so we need message catalogs translators. However, still some programs remain to be properly internationalized.

The GNU Translation Project ftp://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/ABOUT-NLS works on internationalizing the GNU programs and different projects, such as the Desktop environments GNOME or KDE have their own translation teams. The goal of Debian is not to replace or to repeat the work done by these projects, indeed, Debian benefits from the work done by translators in these projects. However, there are still many programs which are not in the scope of those projects and which are translated within Debian.

Previous Debian releases have focused in topics such as:

15.3 Faster booting: Dependency based boot sequence

Work has been done on converting the Debian boot sequence to use dynamic and dependency based ordering instead of hardcoded sequence numbers. That effort has made Debian systems boot much faster, as described in https://wiki.debian.org/ReleaseGoals/BootPerformance.

15.4 Improvements in the Debian Installer

Lots of work has been done on the Debian Installer, resulting in major improvements. We'll mention just two of them here.

Starting the installer from Microsoft Windows: It is now possible to start the installer directly from Microsoft Windows without the need to change BIOS settings. Upon insertion of a CD-ROM, DVD-ROM or USB stick, an autorun program will be started, offering a step-by-step process to start the Debian Installer.

15.5 More architectures

Complete Debian system on other architectures. Notice that even though some architectures are dropped for a given the release there still might be a way to install and upgrade using the latest sid.

15.6 More kernels

In addition to Debian GNU/Hurd, Debian is being ported also to BSD kernels, namely to FreeBSD. This port runs on both AMD64 ("kfreebsd-amd64") and traditional Intel ("kfreebsd-i386").

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The Debian GNU/Linux FAQ

version 8.0, 1 May 2015

Authors are listed at Debian FAQ Authors