Gentoo Archives: gentoo-gwn

From: Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o>
To: gentoo-gwn@××××××××××××.org
Subject: [gentoo-gwn] Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 14 March 2005
Date: Tue, 15 Mar 2005 01:46:43
Gentoo Weekly Newsletter
This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 14 March 2005.
1. Gentoo News
Planet Gentoo launched
Planet Gentoo[1] has been launched last week, a Planet[2]-driven website 
that aggregates all Gentoo-related entries from the weblogs of over 50 
contributing developers. The new resource is intended to improve 
communication between the user and developer communities, and enhance 
communication internally between developers. 
Contributing developers write articles to their weblogs, which will then 
automatically be published on Planet Gentoo, providing a good overview of 
what is being developed and where things are going. At time of launch, the 
Planet has over 50 contributing developers, and will grow further as more 
and more developers add their feeds to the list of those already 
Planet Gentoo started life as an enhancement proposal[3]. Following an 
extensive testing phase, it is now buzzing with activity. All official 
Gentoo developers qualify for inclusion of their feed, provided it's in 
English and either entirely about Gentoo matters, or allowing for 
categorized feeds that can be limited to those. Developers who haven't 
been listed yet can get set up by sending an email to Daniel Drake, even 
if they don't have a blog of their own yet: A weblog to start with can be 
provided to those who need one. 
Gentoo UK Conference
Big turnout for the Gentoo UK conference last Saturday: around 40 Gentoo 
developers and users had flocked to the University of Salford (near 
Manchester) to attend this year's event, organized for the second time in 
a row by Reuben Finch[4] and Stuart Herbert[5]. Presentations included 
talks by Rob Holland[6] about code auditing, Daniel Drake[7] on the kernel 
and user-relation projects, Tom Martin[8] with his successful attempt at 
showing how to get the most out of a command line interface (and making 
zsh a little more popular), and guest speakers Harry Moyes of the 
Manchester Wireless network initiative[9], and Gareth Bult and his Flash 
Linux project[10] presentation rounded off a densely packed, mostly 
technical, and highly enjoyable presentation track. But bringing 
developers together under real life conditions has other advantages, too: 
Tim Yamin[11]and Daniel Drake sat and worked through a few genkernel 
embellishments, and Stephen Bennett[12] got a chance to demonstrate 
Gentoo/FreeBSD with the Gentoo init script system to some fellow devs. 
Photos were unavailable at the time of writing, but the organizers have 
promised to edit a video of the event. Thanks a lot to the sponsors of the 
conference, the London Internet Exchange (LINX)[13] and the University of 
Salford[14], for making it possible to offer this conference free for all! 
And since after the show is in fact before the show, plans for the 2006 
edition of the Gentoo UK conference are already under way. 
 4. reuben.finch@××××××××××.com
 5. stuart@g.o
 6. tigger@g.o
 7. dsd@g.o
 8. slarti@g.o
 11. plasmaroo@g.o
 12. spb@g.o
Note: Collated from blog entries by Daniel Drake, Tom Martin and Marcus D. 
Gentoo preloaded: Pegasos Open Desktop Workstation sale begins
A few days later than the date announced in the GWN[15], Genesi's ODW with 
Gentoo installed is now available for online ordering. After receiving a 
lot of expressions of interest to the temporary mail address, Gentoo has 
now the ability to proceed orders for the machines. For each workstation 
that is sold via the new[16] site, the Foundation will 
receive a 100 USD donation from Genesi. A detailed description of the 
hardware you buy is available at the ODW page[17], from where you can 
register and place your order via the Freescale online shop. 
2. Heard in the community
GLEP talk
The last weeks have seen lots of discussion on the Gentoo Linux 
Enhancement Proposals, and how the system as it is now can be improved: 
 * USE groups (and negatives) [GLEP 29][18] 
 * Metapackages [unnumbered][19] 
 * Eclass Restructure/Redesign [GLEP 33][20] 
 * uid/gid handling [GLEP 27][21] 
 * Per-Category metadata.xml Files [unnumbered][22] 
 * Subversion for Gentoo hosted projects [unnumbered][23] 
 * GLEP system worthwile? [meta-discussion][24] 
Metastructure/organizational idea
Brian Jackson[25] presents a new approach to handling inactive developers: 
"I think we should institute a monthly survivor-esque vote to get rid of 
developers that are useless. I think this would help much more than 
needlessly reorganizing management once again. Once we vote off all the 
useless people that just seem to complain about management, we can all 
live happily ever after." 
 25. iggy@g.o
 * Metastructure/organizational idea[26] 
Keywording policy
Jason Wever[27] has some advice for other devs: "I'd like to ask that you 
all take the time to review the keywording policy in the Developer 
Handbook. In particular, I'd like to draw your attention to the section on 
"Upgrading Ebuilds" People have been getting good lately at either 
dropping keywords for no reason and/or failing to notify or file a bug 
with the arches dropped as to why." 
 27. weeve@g.o
 * Keywording policy[28] 
3. Gentoo International
Germany: IT/Linux Days Lörrach
The "REGIO Messe" is an annual event in a region known as "Trirhenia", 
with French, Swiss and German constituencies all sitting on the banks of 
the river Rhine. The four-day IT/Linux Days in Lörrach are part of the 
larger REGIO event, and Gentoo has been present at this fair for the 
second time in a row. The booth was manned by a team of supporters and 
developers of the Gentoo project, Sebastian Müller (dakjo), Timo Antweiler 
(aZZe), Stefan Knoblich[29] (stkn), and Tobias Scherbaum[30] (dertobi123). 
The same LiveDVD and CD already sold at FOSDEM in Brussels and the 
Linuxtage in Chemnitz last week were available again (and can still be had 
via Bittorrent[31]. At the booth, questions about Gentoo Linux on 
"alternative" architectures dominated the dialogue with visitors, with one 
of the more frequent requests, interestingly enough, being a Sparc32 port. 
Next year's ITLD will be rebaptized to "Minibit", and chances are that 
Gentoo will be present again. 
 29. stkn@g.o
 30. dertobi123@g.o
Figure 3.1: Impressions from the IT/Linux Days
Note: Left: maddog giving the keynote speech, center: Tobias Scherbaum 
installing Gentoo on a Mac Mini, right: Sebastian Müller hacking away at a 
3GHz P4 (
Some people may have trouble finding the small South-German town of 
Lörrach on a map. Not so Jon "maddog" Hall, open-source evangelist and 
legendary executive director of Linux International: Not only did he know 
where Lörrach is, he stayed for the entire duration of the event, and he 
also identified its most interesting spots right away.
Figure 3.2: Embracing the future: maddog visits the Gentoo booth
Note: Left to right: Gentoo developer Stefan Knoblich, Jon "maddog" Hall, 
booth staffers Timo Antweiler and Sebastian Müller
Japan: The future of software engineering
Yoshiaki Hagihara[32], former lead translator on the Japanese GentooJP 
team, has written a book on the future of software engineering in Japan. 
日本のSEはこれからどうなるのか[33] (What's to become of Japan's software 
engineering?) is a collection of interviews with a wide range of people, 
from manga artists to Japanese SE companies, and several professional 
foreign and Japanese hackers, including three Gentooists: Ion Mudreac, the 
man behind the Romanian Gentoo website[34], Gentoo developer Masatomo 
Nakano[35], spiritus rector of the GentooJP project, and GentooJP 
co-founder Hiroshi Senri[36]. The book, published by Shoeisha[37], is sold 
online for 1575 JPY (15 USD).
 32. hagi@×××.com
 35. nakano@g.o
Figure 3.1: Cover of Yoshiaki Hagihara's book
Germany: Gentoo introduction for LUUSA
Despite appearances, the members of LUUSA[38] are quite knowledgeable 
folk: the acronym stands for "Linux and Unix Users Sankt Augustin", the 
resident LUG of a community near Bonn, the former German capital. 
Sebastian Bergmann[39] had the honour of holding a talk about Gentoo in 
general at a meeting last Thursday, 10 March 2005, at Bonn's community 
center "Netzladen", in front of about 30 LUUSAs in the audience. Two 
fellow Gentoo developers, Lars Weiler[40] and Marc Hildebrand[41], had 
stopped by to support Sebastian. His slides (including screen shots from 
the Gentoo Installer project) are available in PDF[42], Flash[43] and 
Openoffice Impress format[44]. 
 39. sebastian@g.o
 40. pylon@g.o
 41. zypher@g.o
Figure 3.1: The LUUSA audience at the Netzladen in Bonn
4. Gentoo in the press
Linux Format (Issue 65)
The UK Linux Format magazine has awarded its annual reader selection of 
the best projects in the open-source realm. Gentoo received the palmares 
in two of the three categories it was nominated in: "Best support" went to 
the Gentoo Forums, according to Linux Format "no doubt boosted by the 
canvassing that Gentoo did on those very pages," and the award for "Best 
distro" in 2004 was won by Gentoo, beating the usual suspects Mandrake, 
Fedora and SuSE. Linux Format notes that "by a reasonable margin, this 
year's spoils go to a relative newcomer who has picked up a lot of 
supporters in the last twelve months -- Gentoo. Well done!"
FAZ (7 March 2005)
Anticipating this week's Cebit IT fair in Hannover, one of Germany's major 
daily newspapers had an article on "Programming for the benefit of 
mankind" in last monday's edition, written by free-lancer Detlef Borchers. 
"When a trade fair has established itself as the world's largest computer 
fair, it doesn't really have to be afraid of an immediate loss of 
importance. But Cebit has a problem, the same problem as Microsoft. And 
they're not the only ones," writes Borchers about the rise of open-source 
development. The article mentions Gentoo in a paragraph about the 
highlights at this year's FOSDEM in Brussels, which Borchers considers "a 
traditional major hacker event," exemplifying the ways of the open-source 
movement that look strange to people who only know Microsoft environments. 
To him, Gentoo and the other "clans" who were present with DevRooms of 
their own, sound "like Spanish villages, but hiding behind those names are 
vital software constructs." 
5. Moves, adds, and changes
The following developers recently left the Gentoo team: 
 * None this week  
The following developers recently joined the Gentoo Linux team: 
 * Carlos Silva (r3bak) - Kernel 
The following developers recently changed roles within the Gentoo Linux 
 * None this week  
6. Gentoo security
mlterm: Integer overflow vulnerability
mlterm is vulnerable to an integer overflow, which could potentially allow 
the execution of arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[45] 
KDE dcopidlng: Insecure temporary file creation
The dcopidlng script is vulnerable to symlink attacks, potentially 
allowing a local user to overwrite arbitrary files. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[46] 
 46. libXpm vulnerability
A new vulnerability has been discovered in libXpm, which is included in, that can potentially lead to remote code execution. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[47] 
Ethereal: Multiple vulnerabilities
Multiple vulnerabilities exist in Ethereal, which may allow an attacker to 
run arbitrary code or crash the program. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[48] 
libexif: Buffer overflow vulnerability
libexif fails to validate certain inputs, making it vulnerable to buffer 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[49] 
7. Bugzilla
 * Statistics 
 * Closed bug ranking 
 * New bug rankings 
The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla ([50]) to record and 
track bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the 
development team. Between 06 March 2005 and 13 March 2005, activity on the 
site has resulted in: 
 * 765 new bugs during this period 
 * 405 bugs closed or resolved during this period 
 * 26 previously closed bugs were reopened this period 
Of the 8238 currently open bugs: 97 are labeled 'blocker', 229 are labeled 
'critical', and 598 are labeled 'major'. 
Closed bug rankings
The developers and teams who have closed the most bugs during this period 
 * AMD64 Porting Team[51], with 34 closed bugs[52]  
 * Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[53], with 26 closed bugs[54]  
 * media-video herd[55], with 22 closed bugs[56]  
 * Gentoo Linux Gnome Desktop Team[57], with 19 closed bugs[58]  
 * Gentoo Sound Team[59], with 18 closed bugs[60]  
 * Perl Devs @ Gentoo[61], with 18 closed bugs[62]  
 * Gentoo Games[63], with 16 closed bugs[64]  
 * Gentoo Security[65], with 13 closed bugs[66]  
 51. amd64@g.o
 53. base-system@g.o
 55. media-video@g.o
 57. gnome@g.o
 59. sound@g.o
 61. perl@g.o
 63. games@g.o
 65. security@g.o
New bug rankings
The developers and teams who have been assigned the most new bugs during 
this period are: 
 * Gentoo Linux Gnome Desktop Team[67], with 14 new bugs[68]  
 * Gentoo Web Application Packages Maintainers[69], with 11 new bugs[70]  
 * Gentoo X-windows packagers[71], with 10 new bugs[72]  
 * Gentoo Sound Team[73], with 9 new bugs[74]  
 * Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[75], with 9 new bugs[76]  
 * AMD64 Porting Team[77], with 9 new bugs[78]  
 * media-video herd[79], with 8 new bugs[80]  
 * Gentoo Games[81], with 8 new bugs[82]  
 67. gnome@g.o
 69. web-apps@g.o
 71. x11@g.o
 73. sound@g.o
 75. base-system@g.o
 77. amd64@g.o
79. media-video@g.o
 81. games@g.o
8. Contribute to GWN
Interested in contributing to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter? Send us an 
 83. gwn-feedback@g.o
9. GWN feedback
Please send us your feedback[84] and help make the GWN better.
 84. gwn-feedback@g.o
10. GWN subscription information
To subscribe to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter, send a blank email to 
To unsubscribe to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter, send a blank email to 
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11. Other languages
The Gentoo Weekly Newsletter is also available in the following languages:
 * Danish[85]  
 * Dutch[86]  
 * English[87]  
 * German[88]  
 * French[89]  
 * Japanese[90]  
 * Italian[91]  
 * Polish[92]  
 * Portuguese (Brazil)[93]  
 * Portuguese (Portugal)[94]  
 * Russian[95]  
 * Spanish[96]  
 * Turkish[97]  
Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o> - Editor
Daniel Drake <dsd@g.o> - Author
Patrick Lauer <patrick@g.o> - Author

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