Debian Weekly News - May 9th, 2006

Welcome to this year's 19th issue of DWN, the weekly newsletter for the Debian community. Uwe Hermann investigated changelog files and recognised a number of interesting release names for packages. Several Debian developers gather in Oaxtepec, Mexico, where this year's Debian Conference will take place and is preceded by a working camp that already started.

Unified Terminology for Distribution Names. Christian Perrier reported on a discussion on the debian-l10n-french mailing list covering different terminology in various Debian documents referring to stable, sarge, 3.1 etc. He proposed to use distribution to refer to the Debian distribution in general and suite when talking about stable, testing etc., using release for release names and version when referring to the version numbers.

Moving Steve McIntyre asked if it would be useful to move the alias away from the Freenode network to the OFTC network, which is a supported project of SPI and hosts IRC channels for a lot of open source projects. Steve's intention was seconded by a number of developers. This move would have the advantage that all Debian related IRC channels could be concentrated on one IRC network. Paul Johnson asked if it would be better to move to a Jabber-based network instead of IRC.

Etch Release Update. Andreas Barth confirmed the timeline to release etch in December. He stated that the ARM port qualifies as a release architecture again and that the list of release architectures are not finalised and will be re-evaluated twice before the release. The kernel that will be used still needs to be decided upon. More release assistants will help keep the release on track.

Tracking forwarded bugs in the BTS. Pierre Habouzit announced the creation of a new service called bts-link. It allows Debian maintainers to follow the status of the bugs they forward to their upstream's bug tracking systems directly in the Debian BTS. As of now, it supports Bugzilla (which is used by KDE, Gnome,, GCC, Mozilla and others), Trac (used by VideoLAN) and Savannah. Sourceforge's bug tracking system shall follow.

Automating new Debian Installations with Preseeding. A new document describes the technique of doing unattended Debian installations with preseeding. The preseed file contains answers to all debconf questions asked during the installation. Its generation is explained in the article. The file's location may be given as a path or a URL.

Debian participates in the Summer of Code. The Debian project announced its participation in Google's Summer of Code. More than 50 development tasks related to Debian cover general improvements, quality assurance, releasing and testing the distribution, package management, new applications, security, infrastructure and the improvement of particular packages. Students and the mentoring organisation will receive funding after the tasks have been worked on.

Wiki Development. Petter Reinholdtsen reported about his efforts to write Wiki pages with which is done with the help of a macro set that converts an document into MoinMoin syntax. Later he reported successful PDF generation from the Wiki page by exporting the contents as DocBook XML.

Maintainer's Karma revived. Gürkan Sengün was missing the old karma page from Dirk Eddelbüttel and the package status page by Takuo Kitame (北目 拓郎). To fill the gap he has created a new overview page combining both. This service is hosted on the GNU/kFreeBSD porter machine, kindly provided by Aurelien Jarno.

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

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

Orphaned Packages. 7 packages were orphaned this week and require a new maintainer. This makes a total of 302 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.

Removed Packages. 10 packages have been removed from the Debian archive during the past week:

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This issue of Debian Weekly News was edited by Sebastian Feltel, Mohammed Adnène Trojette and Martin 'Joey' Schulze.