Debian Project News - November 8th, 2010

Welcome to this year's fifteenth issue of DPN, the newsletter for the Debian community. Topics covered in this issue include:

Debian and Google Code-in 2010

After Debian has been successfully participated in the last Google Summer of Code, where Google sponsored students during the summer holidays to work on specific task for Open Source projects, a new campaign for pre-university students is now started: the Google Code-in 2010. In this new contest, pre-university students may work on smaller tasks during one or two weeks, and in the end may win T-Shirts, money and other prices. Coordination is done again by Obey Arthur Liu, who already started a general wiki page and is now collecting tasks.

Report from openSUSE Conference

Gerfried Fuchs sent a report of the openSUSE Conference where she has been representing Debian through a talk about Debian - The Project and its Resources whose slides are available. One topic raised was about package naming schemes, sometimes diverting from upstream for consistency reasons, so inter-distribution tools would require some layer to map the package name from one distribution to another.

Debian Installer 6.0 Beta1 release

The first beta release of the installer for Debian Squeeze has been released on October 30th, 2010. This release is dedicated to Frans Pop, who was heavily involved in several aspects of Debian Installer until he passed away, and whose loss is deeply regretted.

Many improvements are added in this release of the installer: new platforms (Marvell GuruPlug and OpenRD-Ultimate for example), isohybrid images, and 67 languages are supported, and many more. The errata gather details and a full list of known issues. You are welcome to test the installer and report bugs; media and other information are available on the Debian Installer pages. Especially, the new Win32-Loader should be tested on all Windows versions for all languages.

Minutes from mini-DebConf Paris

The first mini-DebConf Paris has just been held a week ago in the PPS laboratory of Université Paris 7. According to Stefano Zacchiroli, it was a complete success gathering about 150 people from all over Europe. Stefano finalized the Debian Sprint Program, and Lucas Nussbaum worked on UDD and his piuparts replacement between two talks. The Bug Squashing Party also permitted to close (and fill) some bugs.

Mini-DebConf in Ho Chi Minh City

For the first time in Vietnam, the fifth mini-DebConf in Asia will be held during FOSSASIA 2010 in Ho Chi Minh City on November 12-14, 2010. The mini-DebConf will feature talks from different Debian Developers and contributers covering technical, social and policy topics, as well as a translation workshop to foster the Vietnamese translation community and to teach how to translate in Debian. More information is available at the organisation page.

Bits from the Website Team

Gerfried Fuchs sent some Bits from the Website Team in which she summarized the recent activities of the team. Besides announcing that www-master was recently moved to another host, she reported the progress made in the website redesign process. Since several months, in fact, Gerfried Fuchs and Martin Zobel-Helas are working on implementing the Kalle Söderman's proposal for the new website design across different sites and there are already available several previews:,,,,,, and You can follow the further progress on the related wiki page and help the team testing new design with different web browser. The mail ends with a call for further contributors, which are always welcome. A lot of different things need to get done, and not all of them require specific skills.

Further This week in Debian interviews

Since the last issue of the Debian Project News, four new issues of the This week in Debian podcast have been published: with Axel Beckert, member of the kFreeBSD Project; with Samuel Thibault, member of Debian's accessibility team; with Moritz Muehlenhoff, member of the Security Team from the Debian Project; and with Niels Thykier, maintainer of the Eclipse Package and Java Package.

Other news

The twenty-fourth issue of the miscellaneous news for developers has been released and covers the following topics:

Beside the already announced Bug Squashing Parties in Paris (just ended a week ago) and Bern (27th and 28th November), there will also be a real live BSP on the 13th and 14th November in Manchester.

Raphaël Hertzog created a nice presentation template for

Debian decided to officially welcome non-packaging contributors via a General Resolution. Enrico Zini, on behalf of the Debian Account Managers team, already sent some guidelines for applying as non-uploading DD.

New Debian Contributors

6 people started to maintain packages since the previous issue of the Debian Project News. Please welcome Daniele Napolitano, Tshepang Lekhonkhobe, Roy Marples, Dipankar Patro, Deepak Tripathi, Bilal Akhtar and Etienne Millon into our project!

Release-critical bugs statistics for the upcoming release

According to the Bugs Search interface of the Ultimate Debian Database, the upcoming release, Debian 6.0 Squeeze, is currently affected by 284 release-critical bugs. Ignoring bugs which are easily solved or on the way to being solved, roughly speaking, about 126 release-critical bugs remain to be solved for the release to happen.

There are also more detailed statistics as well as some hints on how to interpret these numbers.

Important Debian Security Advisories

Debian's Security Team recently released advisories for these packages (among others): TYPO3, glibc, NSS, and Xulrunner. Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.

Debian's Backports Team releases advisories for these packages: mailscanner, and pidgin. Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.

Please note that these are a selection of the more important security advisories of the last weeks. If you need to be kept up to date about security advisories released by the Debian Security Team, please subscribe to the security mailing list (and the separate backports list) for announcements.

New and noteworthy packages

The following packages were added to the unstable Debian archive recently (among others):

Please note that due to the freeze of the upcoming Debian 6.0 Squeeze acceptance of new packages has almost ceased.

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This issue of Debian Project News was edited by Francesca Ciceri, David Prévot and Alexander Reichle-Schmehl.