Debian Project News - May 12th, 2015

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

Debian 8 Jessie is released

On April 25, the Debian project released a new stable version, Debian 8 Jessie. Niels Thykier, member of the Release team, gave a summary on his blog of the release process for Jessie seen from the inside.

The release of Debian Jessie was accompanied by the first beta release of the Jessie-based DebianEdu and the publication of Debian GNU/Hurd 2015, a snapshot of Debian unstable at the time of Jessie's release, for the unofficial Hurd port.

As with the Wheezy release, Michael Prokop started the New in Jessie game, and invited all Debian contributors to advertise their new packages present in the brand new Debian stable release. He started with a list of forensics packages and tools related to RPM packages.

Dominique Dumont presented some progress in automatic configuration upgrades in the lcdproc package and other new packages. Jonathan McCrohan wrote about his new packages dtv-scan-tables and git-remote-hg, and the packages he updated. Paul Wise highlighted some new developer and QA tools available in Jessie. The Debian Multimedia team published a detailed report some time ago listing the new multimedia applications shipped with Jessie. Andreas Tille also mentioned that during Jessie's development cycle, some packages were freed, moving from non-free to the main part of the archive. The Debian Med team for example freed phylip and seaview.

This initiative was mentioned by Michael during a lightning talk he was giving about Debian Jessie during the Linuxdays in Graz on the day of its release.

Publicity live coverage

Much like the larger project that houses it, the publicity team is also an international effort relying on contributors, developers, and volunteers across the world in nearly every timezone to accomplish a singular task.

For the release of Debian 8 Jessie we did our traditional live coverage across several timezones and facets of social media as members of the publicity team passed the social media torch to another waiting member of the team from Europe to the Americas to Australia.

The coverage of the release started earlier in the week on social media and as the excitement built an announcement was made that the release team was waking up and getting their tea and coffee in preparation for #releasingjessie. The coverage picked up from that point and continued throughout release day and well into the evening until finally the message heard around the world was: Debian 8.0 Jessie has been released! There is a new sheriff in town. And her name is Jessie!

Although we celebrated with everyone else at the posting of the news, we did not stop there: we further posted tips about the new release, advice, facts about Debian, and the history of the project.

We learned a lot about how such a release can be handled in the future. We were able to work dynamically with many of the other teams in Debian and have those teams work inside of our team as well. We hope our experiences will help us continue to deliver you interesting and useful information, but in all we hope that you all enjoyed the coverage!

Results of the DPL elections

Neil McGovern has been elected by the Debian Developers as the Debian Project Leader.

Lucas Nussbaum, in his last bits from the DPL, said: It has been a great honor to be the DPL for the last two years. I would like to thank you all for having made it such as fantastic experience. Debian is really a unique project to be part of. The recent times have not been the easiest ever, but I am convinced that the approaching jessie release will just show how we have overcame the recent difficulties.

He also congratulated Neil for his election, and thanked Mehdi Dogguy and Gergely Nagy for running.

More information about the result is available in the Debian Project Leader Elections 2015 page. The new term for the project leader started on April 17 2015 and expires on April 17 2016.

A delegation for the Outreach team

We welcome the announcement of an official delegation for the Outreach team. The Outreach team is responsible for coordinating Debian's participation in outreach programs such as Google Summer of Code and Outreachy (formerly GNOME's Outreach Program for Women) -- but not limited to those two.

Initially, the team will be composed of Nicolas Dandrimont, Sylvestre Ledru, Molly de Blanc, and Tom Marble. Details about their infrastructure, roles, and how to reach them can be found at

Debian welcomes its 2015 Google Summer of Code Students

Nicolas Dandrimont on behalf of the new Debian Outreach team welcomed the 17 students selected to be part of the Google Summer of Code this year, two of them being Outreachy applicants. They will work on quality assurance and developer tools, porting and archive-wide enhancements, and packaging-related projects. The complete list of students and projects can be found in the announcement email.

Long Term Support announcements for Wheezy and Jessie, Report for Squeeze LTS

Almost a year after the birth of the Debian Long Term Support (LTS) project, with Squeeze LTS being considered a success, it has been announced that Debian 7 Wheezy and Debian 8 Jessie will benefit from Long Term Support, along with a call for help from the Debian LTS team for developer time and/or funding in order to improve and extend the archive coverage for Wheezy LTS.

Freexian published its report about Debian Long Term Support for March 2015, and some members of the LTS team also reported about their work on the project: Raphaël Hertzog wrote an overview about the LTS project and its contributions, and Ben Hutchings published his LTS activities report for April 2015.


Thorsten Alteholz, Mike Gabriel and Raphaël Hertzog blogged about their Debian and FLOSS activities in April 2015. Manuel A. Fernandez Montecelo explained about the Debian GNU/Linux port for OpenRISC or1k: how it came to be, details about its development, and finally the current status.

A few days before the Jessie release, Steve McIntyre wrote some bits from the Debian CD team about the progress made for debian-installer and related packages, such as: EFI enhancements, OpenStack images, Debian-live images, and the new architectures.

Now that Jessie has been released, a new development cycle has begun, and with it, the work on reproducible builds for Stretch, as reported by Lunar.

Bucharest Debian Women mini-DebConf

A mini-DebConf with talks and social events will take place over the weekend of May 16 and 17 which is open to everyone in Debian to hear talks from speakers who identify themselves as female. The schedule of talks for this mini-DebConf organised by Debian Women is already available and the call for proposals for Lightning talks is still open. Registration of participants is recommended, and the organisers are raising funds to cover the costs of running the conference and to offer travel sponsorship to people who can't pay for it. There is a crowd-funding campaign with gift matching by anonymous donors: each euro, dollar, peso or leu donated will be matched. For more information, visit the website of the event.

A new arm64 buildd machine

Steve McIntyre wrote on his blog that he received from Applied Micro an X-Gene development board to set up and use for the Debian arm64 port. The board is now managed by the DSA team and serves as a buildd machine. Thanks Applied Micro for this hardware donation!


Former DPL Lucas Nussbaum has been interviewed by ITWire about the adoption of systemd, his two years in office, and plans after the end of his term.

Petter Reinholdtsen from DebianEdu interviewed Shirish Agarwal who described how DebianEdu is used in India, advantages and disadvantages of DebianEdu, and his views about the strategies to get schools to use free software.

Other news

Since sparc and hurd-i386 were not official release architectures for Debian Jessie, FTP masters are looking at their future for the unstable branch.

Thomas Goirand announced that OpenStack Kilo has entered the Debian unstable archive. The packages are currently being backported for Jessie and will soon be available through the Jessie backports repository.

Upcoming events

There are several upcoming Debian-related events:

You can find more information about Debian-related events and talks on the events section of the Debian wiki, 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

3 applicants have been accepted as Debian Developers, and 7 people have started to maintain packages since the previous issue of the Debian Project News. Please welcome Jonas Genannt, Tomasz Buchert, Federico Ceratto, Peter Ralph, Paul Novotny, Adrian Vondendriesch, David Douard, Ted Gould, Steven Hamilton, and Dave Hibberd into our project!

Important Debian Security Advisories

Debian's Security Team recently released advisories for these packages (among others): wesnoth-1.10, libdbd-firebird-perl, libtasn1-3, das-watchdog, chrony, ntp, libx11, gst-plugins-bad0.10, inspircd, movabletype-opensource, ppp, mysql-5.5, django-markupfield, subversion, curl, wpa, openjdk-6, openjdk-7, libreoffice, linux, chromium-browser, icecast2, curl, elasticsearch, chromium-browser, libxml-libxml-perl, owncloud, ruby1.8, ruby1.9.1, ruby2.1, libphp-snoopy, jqueryui, wordpress, dnsmasq, sqlite3, pound, suricata, zeromq3, libtasn1-6, and mercurial. Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.

The Debian team in charge of Squeeze Long Term Support released security update announcements for these packages: das-watchdog, chrony, libtasn1-3, ia32-libs, libvncserver, libx11, ruby1.9.1, tzdata, wesnoth-1.8, openldap, file, ppp, python-django-markupfield, wireshark, subversion, tzdata, jruby, curl, php5, qt4-x11, openjdk-6, libxml-libxml-perl, libjson-ruby, squid, xdg-utils, xorg-server, and xorg-server. Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.

Debian's Backports Team released advisories for these packages: shibboleth-sp and libreoffice. Please read them carefully and take the proper measures.

Debian's Stable Release Team released an update announcement for these packages: tzdat, clamav, and libdatetime-timezone-perl. 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, stable updates list, and long term support security updates list) for announcements.

New and noteworthy packages

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

Work-needing packages

Currently 666 packages are orphaned and 174 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, Jean-Pierre Giraud, Donald Norwood, Laura Arjona Reina, Justin B Rye and Paul Wise.