Debian Project News - March 4th, 2013

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

Update for Debian 6.0: 6.0.7 released

The seventh update for Debian 6.0 (codenamed Squeeze) has been released. This update mainly adds corrections of security problems to the stable release, along with some adjustments for serious problems.

Call for projects and mentors for Debian GSoC 2013

Paul Tagliamonte, newly appointed administrator for Debian participation in the Google Summer of Code program 2013, asked all Debian contributors for projects and mentors to help Debian participate in the initiative this year. Everyone (member of the Debian project or not, student or not) is welcome to submit their ideas, and to try and find people willing to mentor the projects, explained Paul in his mail. Information on how to submit proposals is available in the relevant wiki page. You can also contact Paul and the other GSoC administrators for Debian on their mailing list or on their IRC channel, #debian-soc on

Wheezy release progress

Niels Thykier, release team member, noticed that the current pace of RC bug fixes is slowing down, with only 1.1 RC bugs fixed a day since his last report. About 200 RC bugs are left to be fixed, and if the pace of RC bug fixes does not pick up, the release team may need to remove packages along with their reverse dependencies.

Debian at Open Source Conference 2013 Tokyo/Spring

Hideki Yamane reported about Debian participation at Open Source Conference 2013 Tokyo/Spring at Meisei University, in Tokyo, Japan. Debian was present with a booth where Hideki and other contributors talked with users and enthusiasts. Takahide Nojima delivered a talk titled Debian Update focused on the latest Debian achievements.

arm64 image available

Wookey announced the availability of the arm64 image. This is the culmination of a three year long effort to make Debian bootstrappable, which has been used for the first time on the port to the 64-bit ARMv8 architecture. Whilst it should be considered alpha-grade for now, it represents a great achievement: all these packages were cross-built on raring, untangling cyclic dependencies with build profiles making this the first (non x86) self-bootstrapped Debian port ever, explained Wookey. Getting this port working has been interesting because it's attempting four new things all at once: multiarch (file layouts and dependencies), crossbuilding (tools and packaging support in a distro that historically was always natively built), arm64 (aarch64) support in packages that need it, and build-profiles to linearise the build-order, he added. The current status of the bootstrap is online, whilst more information on the port (and how to build images) is available on the wiki page of the project.

Other news

Paul Wise blogged about a QA tool for finding packages' inadequacies (broken symlinks, missing copyright files, obsolete conffiles, etc.) called adequate and developed by Jakub Wilk. People interested in software quality are invited to participate in Debian's QA initiatives.

Kurt Roeckx, Debian Project Secretary, announced the timetable for the DPL election.

Hideki Yamane blogged about the series of articles about Debian he is writing for the Japanese magazine Software Design.

Olivier Sallou sent a report from the Debian Med sprint held during the last weekend of February in Schönberg, Germany. The team worked mainly on packaging new software as well as updating existing packages.

Upcoming events

There is one upcoming Debian-related event:

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian web site, or subscribe to one of our events mailing lists for different regions: Europe, Netherlands, Hispanic America, North America.

Do you want to organise a Debian booth or a Debian install party? Are you aware of other upcoming Debian-related events? Have you delivered a Debian talk that you want to link on our talks page? Send an email to the Debian Events Team.

New Debian Contributors

Three people have started to maintain packages since the previous issue of the Debian Project News. Please welcome Alexandre Dreyer, Sebastiaan Mathot and Erik Sjolund 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 Wheezy, is currently affected by 174 Release-Critical bugs. Ignoring bugs which are easily solved or on the way to being solved, roughly speaking, about 69 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): nss-pam-ldapd, openjpeg, postgresql-8.4, squid3, linux-2.6, fusionforge, python-django, cfingerd and xen. 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, and stable updates list) for announcements.

New and noteworthy packages

102 packages were added to the unstable Debian archive recently. Among many others are:

Work-needing packages

Currently 495 packages are orphaned and 143 packages are up for adoption: please visit the complete list of packages which need your help.

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This issue of Debian Project News was edited by Cédric Boutillier, Francesca Ciceri, David Prévot and Justin B Rye.