Debian Weekly News - April 17th, 2002

Welcome to this year's sixteenth issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for the Debian community. Not directly related to Debian, but probably affecting all of us: ZDnet recently reported about two major players in the computer world which have been busy behind the scenes for the last two years building a toll booth that could position them to collect royalties on most if not all Internet traffic.

Woody CD Image. Raphaël Hertzog asked people to test a new feature which is planned to get used on the first official binary CD for Woody. With this feature you are able to select a kernel flavour at boot-time, instead of booting from a different CD for each flavour. Please fetch the image from here, burn it on CD and try to boot it. You can also install Debian with it if you want. :)

Rsync and Debian. Martin Pool, the current upstream maintainer of rsync, collected questions and answers about the integration of rsync in the Debian server network. He compiled them into a document which hopefully reduces similar threads on our mailing lists. It's pretty informal, but hopefully will be useful. Please send comments to

Determining a Suitable Filesystem. Recently, Michal Frackowiak asked which filesystem is most suitable for his laptop. Even though some journaling filesystems like Ext3FS, ReiserFS are supported by the Linux kernel 2.4, the performance seemed not to be fully tested. Mark Janssen pointed out that ext3 will keep the disk busy writing the journal, so shutting down the harddisk won't work anymore.

Installing Debian on an iBook. A while ago Edd Dumbill released an article in which he describes how an iBook can be installed with Debian GNU/Linux. After years wandering in the cranky wilderness of mix-and-match PCs he wanted to work on a computer that feels like it has a soul. The best resource, however, covering the Installation of Debian on this machine is Branden Robinson's Installing Debian 3.0 onto an Apple iBook page.

Open Letter to Bruce Perens, former Debian Project Leader and Free Software evangelist, recently sent an open letter to Michael Robertson, CEO of, Inc. Bruce points out very politely that they are both partners, who have agreed to certain rules. The main reason for sending this letter is that a first beta version (binary-only) of LindowsOS, which is said to be based on Debian, has been released to a limited number of beta testers and the company hasn't yet fulfilled its source-code obligation. Bruce was also distressed by Robertsons treatment of the FSF and Bradley Kuhn, which was reported in Newsforge.

Building Debian on top of OpenBSD. Andreas Schuldei planned for a while to create a secure Debian GNU/OpenBSD, consisting of the best of both worlds. He recently released tools required for creating Debian packages of software on an OpenBSD system. This effort will succeed faster and will be more fun for each person if more people work on it, of course. If you have questions, please contact Andreas directly.

KDE3 for Debian. Several people asked when packages for KDE3 will be ready. Chris Cheney released his plans for this version. KDE 3.0 will not go into sid until woody is released, which is currently scheduled for May 1. Chris may also wait until after XFree 4.2 is released so that recompilation won't be needed. However, preliminary packages will be made available once packaging kdebase is finished. For those of you, who are worried about interaction between development files of KDE2 and KDE3, here's a document describing the issue.

CVS Repository for OpenOffice. Peter Novodvorsky (Петр Новодворский), the person who initially built a Debian package from OpenOffice, announced that a several Debian people have joined their efforts more closely and are now working through a public CVS archive. The mail referenced above contains all details you'll need to know in order to access the archive anonymously. Since commit messages are sent to the debian-openoffice list, subscribers can follow development of Debian packages. It has also been very recently mentioned that OpenOffice could even be uploaded into main since the last remaining dependency for a non-free library was removed.

Bdale Garbee is new Project Leader. Manoj Srivastava, current project secretary, announced the results of our Project Leader Election. According to the results page, the winner is Bdale Garbee (here is his campaign platform). We would like to thank Branden Robinson and Raphaël Hertzog for their service to the project, and congratulate Bdale Garbee for this honorable service.

Security Updates. You know the drill. Please make sure that you update your systems if you have these packages installed.

New or Noteworthy Packages. The following packages were added to the Debian archive recently or contain important updates.

Orphaned Packages. 4 packages were orphaned this week and require a new maintainer. This makes a total of 106 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.

Got News? Please inform us about everything that is happening in the Debian community. We are always looking for any interesting stories to add, especially new items by volunteer writers, and topics we tend to miss. We're looking forward to receiving your mail at

To receive this newsletter weekly in your mailbox, subscribe to the debian-news mailing list.

Back issues of this newsletter are available.

This issue of Debian Weekly News was edited by Yooseong Yang and Martin 'Joey' Schulze.