Gentoo Archives: gentoo-gwn

From: Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o>
To: gentoo-gwn@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-gwn] Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 12 December 2005
Date: Mon, 12 Dec 2005 03:54:54
Gentoo Weekly Newsletter
This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 12 December 2005.
1. Gentoo news
Qt4 on its way into Portage
Qt4 is starting to be marked unstable on various architectures, which 
means that some people will start installing it on their systems. KDE 
still uses Qt3, and due to SLOTting users will have both installed on 
their system and it shouldn't be an issue. After installing Qt4, if users 
note problems with installing ebuilds that may need Qt3 but instead find 
Qt4, please file a bug report[1] and assign it to caleb@g.o to get 
it fixed. The same goes for users who know of packages that use Qt4, 
please assign your bugs to caleb@g.o, too, so we can start getting 
some Qt4-related ebuilds into the tree. 
Alpha project status update
The Gentoo Alpha project released a new status update[2] covering the 
state of core system packages, mainly the kernel, gcc, and the C 
libraries. Experimental ports under way include Java, modular X and 
SELinux, and the future has the creation of an Alpha arch-tester team on 
the agenda, a decision taken against the backdrop of very good experiences 
the AMD64 team had with their architecture testers. 
GWN editorial guidelines and release process
Answering popular demand, a new GWN guide[3] lists editorial guidelines, 
best practices and many technical details of the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 
production. Mainly intended for use of current and future Gentoo Weekly 
Newsletter staff, it explains the scope and structure of the GWN's 
individual chapters and how the GuideXML variant used in producing the GWN 
works. It will serve as a tool for training new contributors to prepare 
their articles using its XML syntax. As a reference to everyone interested 
in joining the GWN team, it's being released in the hope that many new 
authors find their way to contributing to Gentoo's weekly news source. If 
you find the guide useful and would like to be part of the team, please 
contact us via the gwn-feedback@g.o alias with a short description 
of your areas of expertise or which sections you would like to write for. 
Gentoo Forums statistics graphs
Gentoo developer Damien Krotkine[4] has collated statistical data from the 
Gentoo Forums[5] to produce some interesting graphs[6]. The graphs show 
the cumulative totals of users, topics and posts on the forums as well as 
stats for each day since the forums were created. 
 4. dams@g.o
Figure 1.1: Gentoo Forum statistics visualized: user growth
The data is gathered using a shell script and perl to extract the 
information from the Forums' statistics page[7], run from a daily cronjob. 
Older data was gathered by Forums administrator Tom Knight[8] using some 
customized SQL queries. All the data is then passed through gnuplot to 
produce the graphs. Despite the recent downturn, the Forums remain one of 
the most important Linux resources on the Internet. 
 8. tomk@g.o
2. Future zone
New virtual package style increases Portage flexibility
With GLEP 37[9], virtuals are actual packages (located in the virtual/ 
category) instead of being mentioned in the 'virtuals' file in profiles/. 
This gives us more flexibility regarding their syntax. For example we can 
now specify an order of preference for virtual providers instead of just a 
single default versus everything else. 
The first adopter of GLEP 37 is the X team, with virtual/x11. Although 
there were some temporary issues with switching to the new virtual type, 
everything's resolved and seems to work quite well. This lets us only 
allow xorg-x11-6.8.x to fulfill virtual/x11 and force modular X users to 
have completely specified dependencies. 
Modular X users will want to add a line to /etc/portage/profile/virtuals 
until contributors port all the packages on their systems to modular X: 
| Code Listing 2.1:                                                       |
| Insert line for modular X                                               |
|                                                                         |
|virtual/x11	x11-base/xorg-x11                                            |
|                                                                         |
Note:  If you'd like to help with the porting efforts, see the modular X 
porting HOWTO. But first, you'll need to convert your system to modular X. 
Please file bugs only to the package maintainers with patches for modular 
X dependencies, not to x11@g.o. 
3. Heard in the community
Modular X update
Donnie Berkholz[10] gives a small update on the progress with the new 
modular Xorg ebuilds. What's missing now is mostly a change in the 
dependencies of packages - the simple DEPEND on xorg-x11 doesn't work 
anymore with the modular ebuilds. Modular X users will want to add a line 
to /etc/portage/profile/virtuals until contributors port all the packages 
on their systems to modular X as seen in the "Future zone" article above. 
 10. spyderous@g.o
 * Modular X update [11] 
Programs in need of new maintainers
As developers retire from Gentoo and priorities shift every now and then, 
a package loses its maintainer, which becomes a problem when new bugs or 
security-related problems are reported. This week saw an unusual amount of 
packages in need of a new maintainer: 
 * Last rites for media-video/dvdrip [12] 
 * Looking for DirectFB maintainers [13] 
 * Looking for jack maintainers [14] 
 * Looking for a vile maintainer[15] 
[GLEP] Manifest2 format
Marius Mauch[16] presents GLEP 44: "This GLEP proposes a new format for 
the Portage Manifest and digest file system by unifying both filetypes 
into one to improve functional and non-functional aspects of the Portage 
Tree." In short this will offer an improved format for verifying all files 
in the Portage Tree, including multiple hash formats. The new format will 
be incompatible to older portage versions, so that a migration path needs 
to be worked out to avoid breaking updates. 
 16. genone@g.o
 * [GLEP] Manifest2 format [17] 
Gentoo OpenSolaris
On 4 November 2005 "Venky"[18] informed the Gentoo/ALT[19] community that 
he has begun work on Gentoo OpenSolaris. To get him started the excellent 
porting guide[20] written by Gentoo developer Diego Pettenò[21] proved to 
be a valuable resource. 
 21. flameeyes@g.o
 * Gentoo OpenSolaris[22] 
In a recent discussion on the gentoo-alt mailing list, Flameeyes[23] 
explained the two basic types of Gentoo/ALT projects: on the one hand 
there are prefixed projects like Gentoo for Mac OS X and Gentoo/OpenBSD, 
where it's impossible or unwise to mess with the provided userland, 
whereas on the other hand there are non-prefixed ports like Gentoo/FreeBSD 
and Gentoo/NetBSD. After this Diego goes on to tell us a little more about 
the various ports and their specific needs, before explaining the GNU 
tools Portage currently depends on. The rest of the thread saw the usual 
lively discussion on the merits and feasability of these two approaches, 
which as always lead to a rather heated, yet quite informative debate. 
 23. flameeyes@g.o
 * My thoughts on prefixes and de-GNU-ification[24] 
Gentoo-server project status and proposal
Ricardo Loureiro, known as RoadRunner in the Gentoo Forums where he 
moderates the Portuguese section, triggered a discussion of his new 
project to ease network administration and management. The thread also 
contains helpful links on past code and methods: 
 * Gentoo-server project status and proposal[25] 
64-bit transition thread
This thread looks at some of the basic questions regarding the advantages 
of a 64-bit system over a 32-bit one. More concisely there are details on 
getting various 32-bit apps usable on a 64-bit system. Check the 
recommended document addressing a majority of these questions, too: 
 * 64 bit or not[26] 
 * Gentoo AMD64 FAQ[27] 
4. Gentoo international
Germany: Gentoo Summer Camp 2006
Figure 4.1: Gentoo Summer Camp 2006
The second Gentoo Summer Camp 2006 in Germany is planned for 26 and 27 
August 2006, probably to be held somewhere on the German North Sea coast, 
with the exact venue to be decided upon soon. Organizer Slick, one of the 
German Gentoo Forum moderators, expects between 30 and 40 campers to 
participate in the event, with at least a few of them arriving a week 
early to spend an entire Gentoo vacation at the site. Themed T-shirts and 
windbreakers featuring the GSC logo will be made available soon, along 
with a registration site for early bookers. Participation will set you 
back 10 Euros per night and person, including cold beverages and roasted 
marshmallows. For a glimpse of what the first summer camp looked like, 
check the photo collection[28] (in file review.tar.bz2). 
5. Gentoo in the press
====================== (6 December 2005)
Right on time before people have done all their Christmas shopping, Gentoo 
developer Kristopher Kersey (Augustus)[29] has published the third and 
last part[30] of his series on the "Ultimate Linux Workstation" that he 
designed using all the latest and greatest parts to be found in the wild. 
He's spent his money reasonably well on a dual Opteron 2.8GHz system with 
plenty of RAM, fast disks, water-cooling and high-performance graphics to 
impress in the benchmarking he includes in his article. Needless to say, 
Augustus went for Gentoo Linux as the operating system for his ultimate 
workstation (and the alternative "budget system"). Well, what else would 
you want under the tree... 
 29. augustus@g.o
Netcraft (5 December 2005)
Gentoo has passed the mark of 100,000 servers worldwide visibly running 
Gentoo Linux, according to the December survey at Netcraft[31]. With 
Gentoo's success and the even steeper raise in Debian-driven systems, 
non-commercial Linuces including CentOS and Fedora are growing faster than 
their commercial counterparts. 
 31. (December 2005)
Unlike all other maps of Gentoo users that have been established so far, 
this new one[32] over at Frappr (short for "Friends Mapper") isn't 
regionally limited. Wherever on the planet you happen to live, you can pin 
your location onto a global map that already carries hundreds of other 
Gentoo users. Lacking particularly in the Asian and African department so 
far, it's certainly fun to add yourself to the growing number of pins -- 
and even more fun to find others using this tool. 
6. Gentoo developer moves
The following developers recently left the Gentoo project: 
 * None this week 
The following developers recently joined the Gentoo project: 
 * Sandro Bonazzola (Sanchan) - Embedded 
 * Joshua Jackson (tsunam) - x86 
The following developers recently changed roles within the Gentoo project:
 * None this week 
7. Gentoo Security
Perl: Format string errors can lead to code execution
A fix is available for Perl to mitigate the effects of format string 
programming errors, that could otherwise be exploited to execute arbitrary 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[33] 
QDBM, ImageMagick, GDAL: RUNPATH issues
Multiple packages suffer from RUNPATH issues that may allow users in the 
"portage" group to escalate privileges. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[34] 
phpMyAdmin: Multiple vulnerabilities
Multiple flaws in phpMyAdmin may lead to several XSS issues and local and 
remote file inclusion vulnerabilities. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[35] 
8. Bugzilla
The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla ([36]) to record and 
track bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the 
development team. Between 04 December 2005 and 11 December 2005, activity 
on the site has resulted in: 
 * 740 new bugs during this period 
 * 373 bugs closed or resolved during this period 
 * 29 previously closed bugs were reopened this period 
Of the 9124 currently open bugs: 96 are labeled 'blocker', 195 are labeled 
'critical', and 542 are labeled 'major'. 
Closed bug rankings
The developers and teams who have closed the most bugs during this period 
 * Java team[37], with 22 closed bugs[38]  
 * Greg Kroah-Hartman[39], with 17 closed bugs[40]  
 * Gentoo KDE team[41], with 12 closed bugs[42]  
 * Gentoo Developer Relations Team[43], with 12 closed bugs[44]  
 * Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[45], with 12 closed bugs[46]  
 * AMD64 Porting Team[47], with 11 closed bugs[48]  
 * Gentoo X-windows packagers[49], with 10 closed bugs[50]  
 * AMD64 Testing Team[51], with 10 closed bugs[52]  
 37. java@g.o
 39. gregkh@g.o
 41. kde@g.o
 43. devrel@g.o
 45. base-system@g.o
 47. amd64@g.o
 49. x11@g.o
 51. amd64-test@g.o
New bug rankings
The developers and teams who have been assigned the most new bugs during 
this period are: 
 * Default Assignee for New Packages[53], with 30 new bugs[54]  
 * Default Assignee for Orphaned Packages[55], with 15 new bugs[56]  
 * X11 External Driver Maintainers[57], with 12 new bugs[58]  
 * Mozilla Gentoo Team[59], with 11 new bugs[60]  
 * Gentoo Sound Team[61], with 8 new bugs[62]  
 * Gentoo KDE team[63], with 8 new bugs[64]  
 * Saleem A.[65], with 7 new bugs[66]  
 * Gentoo Linux Gnome Desktop Team[67], with 6 new bugs[68]  
 53. maintainer-wanted@g.o
 55. maintainer-needed@g.o
 57. x11-drivers@g.o
 59. mozilla@g.o
 61. sound@g.o
 63. kde@g.o
 65. compnerd@g.o
 67. gnome@g.o
9. GWN feedback
Please send us your feedback[69] and help make the GWN better. 
 69. 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[70]  
 * Dutch[71]  
 * English[72]  
 * German[73]  
 * French[74]  
 * Korean[75]  
 * Japanese[76]  
 * Italian[77]  
 * Polish[78]  
 * Portuguese (Brazil)[79]  
 * Portuguese (Portugal)[80]  
 * Russian[81]  
 * Spanish[82]  
 * Turkish[83]  
Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o> - Editor
Donnie Berkholz <spyderous@g.o> - Author
Tom Knight <tomk@g.o> - Author
Michael Kohl <citizen428@g.o> - Author
Patrick Lauer <patrick@g.o> - Author
Caleb Tennis <caleb@g.o> - Author
Chris White <chriswhite@g.o> - Author

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