Gentoo Archives: gentoo-gwn

From: Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o>
To: gentoo-gwn@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-gwn] Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 27 September 2004
Date: Mon, 27 Sep 2004 02:21:42
Gentoo Weekly Newsletter
This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 27 September 2004.
1. Gentoo News
Gentoo documentation revisited
The first thing many visitors to the Gentoo website will notice when 
opening the Gentoo Handbook[1] or any other piece of documentation these 
days is a little "Print" link sitting on the top of the right column: 
Bowing to long-standing popular requests, Xavier Neys[2] implemented a 
simple way of viewing a printer-friendly version of Gentoo documentation. 

 2. neysx@g.o
Other changes to the Handbook include info about Gentoo's SLOT handling 
for packages, an explanation of the reasons for package masking (and how 
to circumvent it, if need be) and a reinstatement of the manual GRUB 
installation guide requested by many users. Other documentation has been 
added last month, too: Dennis Niehüser[3] contributed a very nice 
document on power management[4] for laptops, with tips on setting up CPU 
frequency scaling, a walkthrough of display, disk, and battery power 
management features, and last but not least, a section on sleep states 
that answers questions many people are too polite to ask. For Gentoo users 
who want to set up their own Internet radio stations, Streaming Radio with 
SHOUTcast[5] is an excellent new guide by Chris White[6] that leads 
through each step of configuring the server and the network, together with 
loads of information on optimizing the service for different uses, get 
transcoding for locally stored MP3s to work and much more. Benny Chuang[7] 
has corrected the language directories for documentation to reflect 
variants of languages (e.g. Chinese, Portuguese), and Steven McCoy[8] has 
added a chapter on PAM authentication to the OpenAFS guide.

 3. fragfred@×××.net
 6. cwhite@g.o
 7. bennyc@g.o
 8. fnjordy@×××××.com
The Gentoo Documentation Project has put up a roadmap document[9], 
featuring all items on the agenda that need immediate fixing. If you want 
to help, get involved by subscribing to the documentation project mailing 

New GWN section: Gentoo in the press
Starting this week, the GWN carries a new section referencing publications 
that have written about Gentoo. It is likely to have an irregular 
schedule, since we don't expect to find something to point you to each 
week, but will gladly accept any hints from our readers: If you happen to 
know of an article in a magazine, or even TV or radio coverage of Gentoo 
Linux, please tell us! The original language of the publication is 
unimportant. Just write a short description of the article's content and 
send it to gwn-feedback@g.o, together with a link to the 
publisher's website, and possibly a scan of the article (if it isn't 
available online). Thanks a lot, and enjoy reading the first installment 
of Gentoo in the Press, just below our International News section. 
2. Gentoo security
Foomatic: Arbitrary command exec foomatic
The foomatic-rip filter in foomatic-filters contains a vulnerability which 
may allow arbitrary command execution on the print server. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[11]

CUPS: Denial of service vulnerability
A vulnerability in CUPS allows remote attackers to cause a denial of 
service when sending a carefully-crafted UDP packet to the IPP port. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[12]

Mozilla, Firefox, Thunderbird, Epiphany vulnerability fixes
New releases of Mozilla, Epiphany, Mozilla Thunderbird, and Mozilla 
Firefox fix several vulnerabilities, including the remote execution of 
arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[13]

glFTPd: Local buffer overflow vulnerability
glFTPd is vulnerable to a local buffer overflow which may allow arbitrary 
code execution. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[14]

GTK+ 2, gdk-pixbuf: multiple vulnerabilities
The GdkPixbuf library, which is also included in GTK+ 2, contains several 
vulnerabilities that could lead to a Denial of Service or the execution of 
arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[15]

FreeRADIUS: Multiple Denial of Service vulnerabilities
Multiple Denial of Service vulnerabilities were found and fixed in 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[16]

xine-lib: Multiple vulnerabilities
xine-lib contains several vulnerabilities potentially allowing the 
execution of arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[17]

jabberd 1.x: Denial of Service vulnerability
The jabberd server was found to be vulnerable to a remote Denial of 
Service attack. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[18]

getmail: Filesystem overwrite vulnerability
getmail contains a vulnerability that could potentially allow any local 
user to create or overwrite files in any directory on the system. This 
flaw can be escalated further and possibly lead to a complete system 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[19]

Apache: Exposure of protected directories
A bug in the way Apache handles the Satisfy directive can lead to the 
exposure of protected directories to unauthorized users. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[20]

3. Heard in the community
Web forums
Portage 2.0.51_rc1 trials and tribulations
The new Portage version is rippling the surface of more than one forum 
these days. Check for new features, bugs, and bugs that really are 
features at one of the threads below: 
 * portage_2.0.51_rc1 and virtuals[21] 
 * Portage 2.0.51 Question[22] 
 * Neue Funktionen und Optionen in Portage 2.0.51[23](German) 
 * Nuove funzioni e opzioni di Portage 2.0.51[24](Italian) 

Xorg takes the place of xfree as default for the x11 virtual
 * Xorg as Default X11 Virtual[25] 

Hardened toolchain reorganization
Solar had previously announced that the hardened toolchain might be 
dropped, but reconsidered when many developers and users gave very 
positive feedback. As it stands now, the Gentoo Hardened subproject does 
not have the manpower to do everything at once, so every bit of support, 
especially with bug hunting and fixing is wanted.
 * Hardened Toolchain[26] 

Stack-smash protection by default?
This long and controversial thread was started upon someone asking a 
rather innocent question: Shouldn't Gentoo offer stack-smash protection 
("-fstack-protector" CFLAG) by default, since most vulnerabilities are 
still buffer overflows? Stack-smash protection can adversely affect 
performance, it offers protection against a class of exploits, enabling it 
may protect users, at little extra cost.
 * Stack Smash Protection[27] 

USE="acl" likely to be removed from profiles
All profiles and stage2 / stage3 set USE="acl", but most users will not 
need it, and some complications may happen during install. Therefore this 
flag has been removed from the 2004.3 x86 profile; most likely the other 
profiles will do the same.
 * USE="acl" Dropped[28] 

Moving /usr/qt and /usr/kde for better FHS compliance?
The FHS (File Hierarchy Standard) defines default locations for most files 
in a linux system. Is the Gentoo strategy of using /usr/qt/x.y and 
/usr/kde/x.y to allow different KDE and QT versions to coexist a violation 
of the FHS? 
 * Qt/KDE and FHS[29] 

4. Gentoo International
Italy: Impressions from Linux World Expò - The Gechi LWE movie 
The Gechi (Gentoo Channel Italia) activists have veni to the Linux World 
Expo (Milano edition), and have both vidi and vici... To provide a virtual 
experience of their introductory Gentoo presentation they've set up four 
movie versions of the speech given by Forum user .:deadhead:.[30]. Kindly 
refrain from clicking any of the links listed below if your bandwidth 
doesn't allow for large downloads, or you don't have 54 minutes to watch 
their endeavours:

 * Gechi Presentation at LWE Milano 2004 (different formats, 20 to 330 

Germany: Gentoo PPC developer meeting update 
Both Belgians on the Gentoo PPC team, Pieter van den Abeele (pvdabeel) and 
Jochen Maes (SeJo), have announced their presence at the GentooPPC 
developer meeting[32] scheduled for Thursday this week, 30 September, 
bringing the number of participants to double digits (from almost as many 
different countries). You can still register for this event at Kransberg 
Castle (near Frankfurt am Main) with Ulrich Plate[33].

 33. plate@g.o
5. Gentoo in the press
Linux Gazette: September 2004 (issue no. 106)
Mike Orr (aka Sluggo) wrote an article about Installing Gentoo[34] - 
"still my favourite distro" - for this month's Linux Gazette. He describes 
the installation process of a desktop system on two different PCs, both 
dual-booting Windows, one Pentium III with 1 GHz and a brandnew 2.6 GHz 
Pentium4 with two monitors. 

Linux+ 02/2004 (September 2004) 
This month the Polish magazine Linux+[35] (also distributed in German and 
Czech versions) comes bundled with two DVDs, one of which has Gentoo Linux 
2004.1 for x86 (stages 1 and 3 included) on it, with an updated Portage 
and an extra-check of software dependencies. The printed edition includes 
an article describing the installation from DVD, the official handbook and 
additional installation guides can always be found at the Gentoo 

6. Bugzilla
 * Statistics 
 * Closed Bug Ranking 
 * New Bug Rankings 
The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla ([37]) to record and 
track bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the 
development team. Between 19 September 2004 and 25 September 2004, 
activity on the site has resulted in: 

 * 680 new bugs during this period 
 * 505 bugs closed or resolved during this period 
 * 15 previously closed bugs were reopened this period 
Of the 7133 currently open bugs: 135 are labeled 'blocker', 220 are 
labeled 'critical', and 562 are labeled 'major'. 
Closed bug rankings
The developers and teams who have closed the most bugs during this period 
 * Gentoo KDE team[38], with 31 closed bugs[39]  
 * PPC Porters[40], with 25 closed bugs[41]  
 * ppc64 architecture team[42], with 21 closed bugs[43]  
 * Greg Kroah-Hartman[44], with 21 closed bugs[45]  
 * Gentoo Games[46], with 18 closed bugs[47]  
 * Gentoo Security[48], with 17 closed bugs[49]  
 * Java team[50], with 17 closed bugs[51]  
 * Perl Devs @ Gentoo[52], with 16 closed bugs[53]  
 38. kde@g.o
 40. ppc@g.o
 42. ppc64@g.o
 44. gregkh@g.o
 46. games@g.o
 48. security@g.o
 50. java@g.o
 52. perl@g.o

New bug rankings
The developers and teams who have been assigned the most new bugs during 
this period are: 
 * Mozilla Gentoo Team[54], with 19 new bugs[55]  
 * Gentoo Linux Gnome Desktop Team[56], with 18 new bugs[57]  
 * Gentoo X-windows packagers[58], with 16 new bugs[59]  
 * Gentoo KDE team[60], with 14 new bugs[61]  
 * AMD64 Porting Team[62], with 14 new bugs[63]  
 * media-video herd[64], with 10 new bugs[65]  
 * Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[66], with 10 new bugs[67]  
 * PHP Bugs[68], with 7 new bugs[69]  
 54. mozilla@g.o
 56. gnome@g.o
 58. x11@g.o
 60. kde@g.o
 62. amd64@g.o
 64. media-video@g.o
 66. base-system@g.o
 68. php-bugs@g.o

7. Tips and tricks
Roaming network profiles for laptops with Quickswitch
Every Laptop user knows what I am talking about by saying that switching 
network profiles is a real problem and hard to keep track of when doing it 
manually. This is where Quickswitch[70] comes in. Quickswitch is a utility 
that not only makes laptop users' everyday life easier by letting them 
create and use roaming network profiles, but it also has built-in support 
for multiple network cards, wireless LAN configurations, different kernel 
parameters, support for X configurations, Netscape preferences, Samba 
shares and so on and so forth.

Sounds good? Want to learn how to use it? Read on:
| Code Listing 7.1:                                                       |
|Installing                                                               |
|# emerge quickswitch                                                     |
Now we need to tell quickswitch about all the network settings we want to 
be able to switch to. Quickswitch can be configured using it configuration 
file in /etc/quickswitch/switchto.conf. There is also a sample 
configuration in /etc/quickswitch/switchto.conf.sample.
| Code Listing 7.2:                                                       |
|Setting up the quickswitch configuration in                              |
|# This is the default configuration:                                     |
|[config]                                                                 |
|device=eth0                                                              |
|# Path to save last known good configuration...                          |
|servicefilename=/etc/quickswitch/switchto.last                           |
|                                                                         |
|# This is our profile called "home":                                     |
|[home]                                                                   |
|description=home                                                         |
|address=                                                     |
|netmask=                                                    |
|gateway=                                                      |
|dns1=                                                        |
|dns2=                                                       |
|                                                                         |
|# This is our profile called "work":                                     |
|[work]                                                                   |
|description=work                                                         |
|address=                                                      |
|netmask=                                                    |
|gateway=                                                      |
|dns1=                                                        |
|                                                                         |
|                                                                         |
We are finished with the configuration now. Let's test if it works.
| Code Listing 7.3:                                                       |
|Using switchto to switch to another                                      |
|Switch to "work" profile:                                                |
|# switchto work                                                          |
|Switch to "home" profile:                                                |
|# switchto home                                                          |
Use ifconfig and route to make sure that switchto correctly applied the 
settings the first time. Everythings ok? Well done!
Quickswitch offers two more ways of how to switch your profile.
 * switcher is a simple curses based GUI to switch between your profiles. 
 * TraySwitcher[70] is a more sophisticated Gnome tray applet. 
To learn how Quickswitch easily lets you create profiles that also switch 
Samba, X configurations and even more. Take a look at the well documented 
/etc/quickswitch/switchto.conf.sample sample configuration file and visit 
the Quickswitch project homepage[71].

8. Moves, adds, and changes
The following developers recently left the Gentoo team:
 * None this week 
The following developers recently joined the Gentoo Linux team:
 * None this week 
The following developers recently changed roles within the Gentoo Linux 
 * None this week 
9. Contribute to GWN
Interested in contributing to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter? Send us an 

 72. gwn-feedback@g.o
10. GWN feedback
Please send us your feedback[73] and help make the GWN better.

 73. gwn-feedback@g.o
11. 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 
gentoo-gwn-unsubscribe@g.o from the email address you are 
subscribed under.
12. Other languages
The Gentoo Weekly Newsletter is also available in the following languages:
 * Danish[74] 
 * Dutch[75] 
 * English[76] 
 * German[77] 
 * French[78] 
 * Japanese[79] 
 * Italian[80] 
 * Polish[81] 
 * Portuguese (Brazil)[82] 
 * Portuguese (Portugal)[83] 
 * Russian[84] 
 * Spanish[85] 
 * Turkish[86] 

Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o> - Editor
Brian Downey <bdowney@×××××××××××.net> - Author
Christian Hartmann <ian@g.o> - Author
Patrick Lauer <patrick@g.o> - Author
Emmet Wagle <ewagle@×××××.com> - Author

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