Debian Weekly News - May 15th, 2002

Welcome to this year's twentieth issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for the Debian community. According to this list of excuses, which says "Gimme an F, gimme an R, gimme an E, E, Z, E. What does it spell?", it looks like Woody entered the next step. Not all of you will know this, but Bdale Garbee is a ham, and as such he will deliver the keynote at Dayton Hamvention Activities.

BTS Redesign Underway. On the debian-debbugs list people are discussing a redesign of Debian's Bug Tracking System (BTS). Manoj Srivastava is working on a design document, which will be kept up-to-date. It contains goals, boundaries, interfaces and use cases. If you are missing a certain feature, please drop Manoj a line at

Update for DebConf 2. Debian Conference 2 (DebConf) will be held at York University in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, from July 5th - 7th, 2002. Joe Drew, who took the burden of organizing this year's DebConf, sent in an update report. More than 100 people, including more than 25 Debian developers, have already signed up for the conference. Due to York University requirements, the last day you can sign up for Debconf and stay at the university is May 31, 2002. If you don't make this deadline you can still attend, but you won't be able to have the arrangements made through Joe and his crew.

Woody DVDs Working Fine. Steve McIntyre sent in a success report for the Woody DVD. He tested the ones he created from a local mirror on several random machines around his office, including a Thinkpad, a small Dell server box and some older self-built machines. All seem to work fine with the Isolinux code and will load up to the installation system just fine.

Proposed Java Policy. Ola Lundqvist believes that since Woody is almost released, it is time discuss the maturity of the proposed Java policy. Please comment on the proposal and send your opinion to the debian-java list.

Installation of Debian through a USB Floppy Drive. Gernot Weber wondered how he could manage to install Debian with a USB-Floppy. The rescue disk booted but the installer couldn't find the root-disk after changing. Werner Heuser pointed out that a special boot option may be required in order to make Linux recognize the floppy drive. If this doesn't work one could still try another installation method as described in the Linux-Mobile-Guide.

Debian for Hams. A new subproject was created: Debian-Ham, a distribution for Hamradio operators. provides a CVS repository, a MySQL database and several mailing lists. Joop Stakenborg explained that this effort is not an attempt to create a distribution fork and continues with reasons why a subproject seems to be useful and when the idea came up.

Hurd within Bochs? Neil Levine wondered if the Hurd would run in Bochs (an IA-32 (x86) PC emulator) and Robert Millan replied with appropriate net resources. Alfred Szmidt wrote a fine tutorial about creating a GNU/Hurd image that can be used with Bochs. An image shall be uploaded to the list of disk images with pre-installed systems.

Formation of SGML/XML Policy Group. Mark Johnson started to form an SGML/XML policy group. It should compose a new Debian policy for packaging, implementation, etc., of XML, SGML, and related stuff. Adam Di Carlo and Mark started writing up a draft a year ago in an effort to develop an LSB-compliant implementation. The document is far away from being finished, though.

New Boot-Floppies for Woody. David Kimdon announced that a new version 3.0.23 of boot-floppies will soon be released. He says that some ports will probably use this version for Woody, depending on a variety of factors. A test set for i386 is available here, together with a changes file. Please test and report back to the debian-boot list.

Debian Seminar Held in Korea. On last Saturday the Korean Debian Users Community hosted this year's first Debian seminar (English translation is here). Such an event takes place four times a year. The seminar preparation team announced that this seminar aims at file system management and backup of file systems for experienced system administrators. This encouraged people to use Debian GNU/Linux as a file system server. Many people discussed file systems, backup methods, Debian related issues and enjoyed the seminar meeting.

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

Orphaned Packages. 1 package was orphaned this week and requires a new maintainer. This makes a total of 80 orphaned packages currently. Many thanks to the previous maintainer 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.

Seen something interesting? Please drop us a note whenever you see something noteworthy that you think is appropriate for inclusion in DWN. We don't see everything, unfortunately, and this month will be a busy one for us. Of course, we are also thankful for completely written items from volunteer writers. We're looking forward to receiving your mail at

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