Debian Weekly News - May 31st, 1999

Welcome to Debian Weekly News, a newsletter for the Debian developer community.

Configuration management, a way to store answers to install-time questions in a database for use later, is an idea that has been floating around for a long time. There have been detailed specifications, like Wichert's proposal. However, until recently, this was all vaporware. Recently, two mostly-complete implementations of configuration management systems have appeared. Neither of these are as complete as the as the old proposal. However, they have one big thing going for them: they are a "small hack which is actually implemented", not a "ideal hack which has been debated for years and never implemented".

An article about Linux Expo paints a clear picture of the Debian presence there: "The Debian booth didn't even have chairs; everyone sat cross-legged on the floor. But Debian had the best hats and the best music, and among those who made the Debian booth their De facto home base at LinuxExpo were several celebrated free software programmers and hackers". It also features quotes of developer Sean Perry. But the depressing side of this article is its discussion of the highly corporate nature of the Expo and the marginalization of the Free Software community there. "The forlorn groups hidden away back on poverty row were Linux when Linux wasn't cool"

That ties in with a thread DWN missed last week, a discussion about whether Debian should spend money on booths at these trade shows. Most people think a small booth in the back is sufficient, so long as there are plenty of free CD's to give away.

A Debian slide show is under development. The first version is aimed at Linux newbies.

The Debian JP project continues to merge more packages into Debian. Here is a rather frightening long list of packages they intend to add. DWN was also told that the term of office of the Debian JP steering team has expired and elections are beginning.

New packages added to Debian this week include the following and 33 more, many of them GNOME-related:

KDE and GNOME: People still using stable can get updated GNOME debs for all GNOME packages in unstable. Debian sparc users can now get unofficial KDE 1.1.1 packages.

Server News:

Thanks to Katsura S. Yoshio and Christian Meder for contributing.

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This issue of Debian Weekly News was edited by Joey Hess.