Debian Weekly News - October 20th, 1999
Welcome to Debian Weekly News, a newsletter for the Debian developer community.
The Atlanta Linux Showcase was the event of the week. Here's a report from Joey Hess:
Debian was everywhere at the Atlanta Linux Showcase, from the two Debian books on the show floor, to the Debian boxed set being handed out at VA's booth, to frisbees and rub-on tattoos emblazoned with the Debian logo. Of course, Debian had a booth there as well, with a webcam and examples of Debian running on hardware ranging from a NeXT box to Sparcs. The boxed set and other merchandising of Debian generated a lot of interest in us. The developers attending included some real old-timers, and we had some very good late night talks.
Some concerns were raised about the size of boot floppies for potato. Apparently, the base tarball for installation is some 15MB. The boot floppies team is working hard on making sure that, for most people, it will not be necessary to make 16 floppies for a potato install.
Along similar lines, there are complaints that very large data packages should not be placed in the archive. A 47MB package (gmt-coast-full) was recently uploaded. The Debian archive is currently about 10G, and growing rapidly. There are worries that we will lose many mirrors if it continues to grow at its current rate.
A new version of dpkg was uploaded by our fearless leader, which includes fixes from Ben Collins for some long-standing bugs.
Several packages were renamed this week, causing some confusion. The lesstif package has been renamed to lesstif1. The qt1/qt2 packages have been renamed to libqt1/libqt2. The bzip2 package has been split into bzip2 and libbz2. Some packages are still broken because of these changes.
A new finger interface to the developers' directory was announced. This will mostly be useful for obtaining developers' GPG/PGP keys. finger firstname.lastname@example.org for usage instructions.
Some interesting proposals this week:
- Wichert Akkerman posted a proposal for handling new maintainer applications;
- Matt Porter suggested replacing dselect with console-apt on the boot floppies. The general consensus seems to be that while console-apt is really cool, it still lacks some important features before it will be really useful.
New packages in Debian this week include the following and 132 more:
- bottlerocket: Utility to control X10 Firecracker devices
- gnumach: The GNU version of the Mach microkernel (dev)
- libvdkbuilder: Plugin libraries bundled with VDKBuilder (4 days new) (dev)
This issue of DWN was put together by Randolph Chung. Joey Hess will be back next week.
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This issue of Debian Weekly News was edited by Joey Hess.