Debian Weekly News - November 28th, 2006

Welcome to this year's 41st issue of DWN, the newsletter for the Debian community. Due to unfortunate circumstances the weekly newsletter stopped being released weekly and will only be finalised when enough people have contributed. Thanks to Sebastian Feltel for nearly writing this issue alone. Bill Allombert began to evaluate package set upgrades from sarge to etch to find out how smooth the upgrade goes.

GNOME 2.14 in Etch. Jordi Mallach announced that the Debian GNOME team has decided to ship GNOME 2.14 with the upcoming etch release. Due to several problems with the latest version 2.16 they prefer the stabilised and well tested version 2.14 to be shipped with etch rather than an relative new GNOME 2.16 for which backports shall be provided.

Debian Conference 7. Moray Allan announced that the next DebConf will take place from June 17th to June 23rd in Edinburgh, United Kingdom. Just before the conference there will be a DebCamp starting on the 10th of June where Debian developers are invited to work together on several Debian-related projects. On the 16th of June a DebianDay is scheduled which is mainly targeted at the Debian users. All people whether Debian developers or Debian users are welcome to attend.

First Debian Installer Release Candidate. Frans Pop announced the first release candidate of the debian-installer for etch. After a long time of development this release candidate includes a lot of improvements like installing onto encrypted LVM partitions, a graphical GTK-based installation method and partition resizing. It is based on the Linux kernel 2.6.17. A second release candidate is planned which will use Linux 2.6.18, the default kernel for etch.

DebConf Registration and Call for Papers. Moray Allan announced the registration phase for the upcoming Debian Conference, which will be take place Edinburgh, UK. He also asked for submission of proposals for papers, presentations, discussion sessions and tutorials until January 31st. There is a web interface for attendees and for submitting proposals.

Etch Release Update. Steve Langasek stated that the stabilisation phase of etch is about three months behind former expectations and due to this fact the prospected release date of December, 4th could not be met anymore. Apart from that the distribution is in good shape, almost all release goals are met or in the process of being met and the number of release critical bugs is continuously going down.

Help with the Debian FAQ. Javier Fernández-Sanguino Peña called for help with the release by improving our documentation by helping to update the Debian GNU/Linux FAQ. Some content is available in the Wiki but still has to be reviewed and rewritten for the FAQ. He asked the maintainers to take a look at the current version, check if frequently asked questions of users are included and submit bug reports if they are not.

New Sparc Development Machine. Martin Michlmayr reported that Sun has donated a new Sun Fire T2000 to the Debian project. The machine will be used for the sparc port and consists of 8 UltraSparc T1 processor cores, 32 GB of RAM and two 70 GB hard disks. The machine is not in the domain to give external people access to it. Developers who want to have access to it should contact Bastian Blank. The Debian project would like to take the opportunity to thank Sun for the donation.

New Debian Archive Signing Key. For the upcoming release of etch a new GnuPG key has been created. This is the first Debian release supporting Secure APT so that users will be able to verify the authenticity of Debian packages prior to installing them on their machines. The Wiki page explains how to import the new signing key and provides an overview about the functionality of Secure APT.

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. 36 packages were orphaned last month and require a new maintainer. This makes a total of 346 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. To find out which orphaned packages are installed on your system the wnpp-alert program from devscripts may be helpful.

Removed Packages. 32 packages have been removed from the Debian archive during the past month:

Want to continue reading DWN? Please help us create this newsletter. We still need more volunteer writers who watch the Debian community and report about what is going on. Please see the contributing page to find out how to help. 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 Sebastian Feltel and Martin 'Joey' Schulze.