Debian Project News - May 12th, 2014

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

Debian members vote to accept a code of conduct

Just after the election of the Debian Project Leader, Debian members were called by Kurt Roeckx, Debian secretary, to vote on a general resolution for a code of conduct proposed by Wouter Verhelst. This code of conduct promoting respect, good faith, collaboration, conciseness and openness has been adopted by Debian Members. It can be modified via further general resolutions. More details about the results of this vote can be found on the page of the website dedicated to this general resolution.

Registration open for DebConf14

The Debian Project is pleased to announce that registration is now open for DebConf14, which will take place in Portland, Oregon, USA from Saturday, August 23 to Sunday, August 31, 2014. As in previous years, three different registration options will be available: Basic, Professional and Corporate. To request food, accommodation or travel sponsorship, you must be registered by Thursday, May 15, 2014. After this date, registrations will still be accepted, but requests for sponsorship will not. For more detailed information about how to register, please see the separate announcement from the DebConf team.

In past years, DebConf has been preceded by a separate DebCamp event, where developers can gather before the conference and collaborate in person on Debian. This year the team is trying a different approach, with a longer conference period allowing for blocks of talks to be mixed with blocks of coding time throughout the week. More information about the schedule will be made available when the Call for Papers is posted in the near future. Furthermore, as mentioned in the latest bits from the DPL mail, there is also an opportunity for Debian teams to organise sprints around DebConf. Teams who are interested should follow the process documented on the wiki page.

SPARC removed from Jessie

Philipp Kern announced the removal of the SPARC port from testing, as of April 26. The main reasons were lack of porter commitment, problems with the toolchain and continued stability issues. The fate of SPARC in unstable has not been decided yet; it may be removed unless people commit to working on it. Discussion about this should take place on bug report #745938. SPARC support was officially introduced in Debian GNU/Linux 2.1 (code name slink) back in March 1999 and was featured in eight releases.

Promising future for Debian in embedded systems

Tony Mancill reported about his attendance at the EE Live/Embedded Systems Conference, which took place in San Jose, California, on March 31—April 3, and showed the increasing relevance of Debian in embedded systems: Bunnie Huang's keynote introduced the Novena open-hardware laptop, which will be shipped with Debian preinstalled; Ryan Kuester, one of the developers of the Debian-based Pragmatux, presented Running Android atop a proper embedded Linux; and David Reyna presented the Yocto Project, which supports both .rpm and .deb-based package management for embedded targets, and lists Debian as a supported development workstation environment.

Bits from the Release Team

Regular security support for Debian GNU/Linux 6.0, squeeze, will be terminated on May 31, 2014. A new suite named squeeze-lts and containing only two architectures, i386 and amd64, will be made available with support extended until February 2016 to provide a five year support cycle. A reminder that the scheduled freeze date for Jessie has been set for six months from now on Wednesday, November 5, 2014. In the same message, Niels Thykier reported on the Release Team's architecture meeting, held on April 12, 2014, about the status of the architectures and considering their suitability for Jessie. Recursive auto-removals have returned, with warnings to the maintainers of the involved packages prior to removal.

Bits from the systemd + GNOME sprint

Jordi Mallach sent bits from the Debian sprint where the Debian GNOME core team and systemd Debian maintainer gathered in Antwerp, Belgium. Over two days, the ten participants discussed a variety of topics to do with systemd and GNOME integration in Debian. After some improvement in the packaging workflow for systemd, version 208 of systemd has been uploaded to experimental. The GNOME team initiated several transitions, improved the status of GNOME 3.12 in Debian, and discussed the feasibility of having Debian Jessie shipped with 3.14. The participants also jointly discussed how to configure and start display managers, and may have come to a working solution to this problem, which is complicated by the number of packages providing display managers and init systems. They also used this opportunity to sign new, stronger GnuPG keys in order to help the effort to abandon older and weaker keys. The participants thank the sponsors, most notably INUITS, which provided the venue, and Debian and its donors for covering the travel expenses for five of the attendees. A few of the attendees were kindly sponsored by their employers.

Other news

The fifth update of the stable distribution of Debian (codename wheezy) was released on April 26.

The KDE team needs more manpower, and sent a call for help. People interested in helping with tasks from triaging bugs to packaging KDE applications and editing the team's documentation are invited to join the #debian-qt-kde IRC channel on, or write a message to the team's mailing list.

On behalf of the Debian FTP Masters, Scott Kitterman formally announced that source packages [are considered] to be part of the Debian system and as such all files in source packages must come with their source as required by the Debian Free Software Guidelines and be distributable under a free license.

Guido Günther sent a report of the Debian Groupware meeting, held at the end of March at the LinuxHotel, in Essen.

The FreedomBox project is a community project to develop, design and promote personal servers running free software for private, personal, communications. Petter Reinholdtsen announced on his blog that all packages used by the FreedomBox project are now available in Debian unstable. Petter describes a couple of methods to test the FreedomBox setup from a Debian installation or a Debian installation CD.

Axel Beckert announced on his blog that the new upstream 4.2.0 version of GNU Screen, the first in six years, is already available in the Debian archive, and just entered the testing suite.

The DebConf organisation team met on May 3 to kick off the organisation of DebConf15, which will take place in Heidelberg, Germany. Minutes of the meeting are available, as well as a blog post with details of the prospective venue.

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

Two applicants have been accepted as Debian Maintainers, and eleven people have started to maintain packages since the previous issue of the Debian Project News. Please welcome Aaron Zauner, Teddy Hogeborn, Matthias Maier, R. Harish Navnit, Roman Valov, Scott Talbert, Sebastian Eichelbaum, Stephen Smith, Johannes Brandstätter, Jörg Frings-Fürst, Cédric Barboiron, Sebastian Andrzej Siewior, and Daniel James, into our project!

Important Debian Security Advisories

Debian's Security Team recently released advisories for these packages (among others): wordpress, curl, strongswan, virualbox, chromium-browser, linux-2.6 openssl, qemu, qemu-kvm, icedove, openjdk-6, drupal7, drupal6, dpkg, libmms, super, iceweasel, mysql-5.5, chromium-browser, xbuffy, strongswan, openjdk-7, icedove, and rxvt-unicode. Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.

Debian's Backports Team released an advisory for the package openssh. Please read it 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

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

Work-needing packages

Currently 577 packages are orphaned and 137 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 Laura Arjona Reina, Cédric Boutillier, Jean-Pierre Giraud, Donald Norwood and Justin B Rye.