Debian Weekly News - March 1st, 1999

Welcome to Debian Weekly News, a newsletter for the Debian developer community. We are reporting this week from LinuxWorld Expo in San Jose, California. This issue of DWN is a day late, I apologize for the delay.

The release of Debian 2.1 has been delayed by one week. There was a release IRC party held on on Monday, but despite what you may have heard there, the release was not made on time. "There are a couple of reaons for this delay, ranging from some internal struggles to upgrade failures that were discovered at the last moment." For more details, see Wichert's message and Guy's message.

Debian's booth at LinuxWorld is up and running. If you're in town for LinuxWorld, do stop by booth #1445 and get some free CD's. News from the booth at Linuxworld will appear here. Here is a Wired News article about the Debian booth and the Mac SE we have running Debian there. By the way, according to a script Lars Wirzenius wrote, Debian contains about 62,895,190 lines of code. And all those lines of code are scrolling by on a monitor at LinuxWorld.

Debian is now the distribution used in the Empeg in-car mp3 player. One of these neat little boxes is actually at the Debian booth at LinuxWorld. For more on the Empeg, see their home page.

Brian White is stepping down from his position of Release Manager. Richard Braakman or another volunteer will take his place. The events leading up to this, occurring in the last few days of the freeze, were ugly. Mistakes were made, resulting in about a gigabyte of extra traffic to each mirror. Harsh words were exchanged. Hopefully the parties involved can put this behind them and continue to work in other areas of Debian.

The Gimp logo contest is over. "Next week the logo team will present the best logos, from which all developers can choose a winner by vote. The current logo will also be a possible option." A discussion is also underway about what license to use for the winning logo.

Joel Klecker posted about glibc 2.1, which will be showing up in unstable soon after slink is released. One important change in glibc 2.1 is that it uses a utmpd, so programs that once needed to be setuid to write to utmp (like xterm) will no longer need special permissions.

In the realm of security, a temporary file security hole is present in mutt. A fix is in incoming.

Jonathan Walther has written up a short HOWTO on PGP key signing, which is a useful reference when you finally meet another developer, only to discover neither of you has any clue about how to exchange PGP signatures (a common occurrence, in my experience).

Another Debian convert: Mike of the comic strip User Friendly is perhaps the first fictional Debian user, as depicted in this cartoon.

If you prefer your news in a format like slashdot instead of weekly, check out, which now has Debian news in a slashdot-like format.

New packages added to Debian this week include:

Server news

Followups to previous news items:

Off topic email of the week (speaking of the Debian logo, after some very off topic conversation):

we could compromise: a bumblebee attempting intimate relations with an orca.
i'm glad that's settled. now the only question remaining is "which one of them should be in drag?"

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