Gentoo Archives: gentoo-gwn

From: Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o>
To: gentoo-gwn@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-gwn] Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 10 October 2005
Date: Mon, 10 Oct 2005 22:03:38
Gentoo Weekly Newsletter
This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 10 October 2005.
1. Gentoo news
Gnome 2.12 moving to unstable
The new Gnome 2.12 will be moved into unstable (~arch) this week. An 
upgrade guide[1] is available with step-by-step instructions for Gentoo 
users who'd like to update. If you experience any issues, please search 
the Gentoo bugzilla[2], wander into #gentoo-desktop on, 
or file a new bug. Changes to specific packages are shown in the upgrade 
Unstable KDE users are also affected by this change. If a KDE user 
upgrades hal/dbus/pmount then kde-base/kdebase-kioslaves will need to be 
recompiled afterwards. 
Gentoo at the Linux World Expo London
Last weekend was the time for the annual Linux World Expo in London[3]. 
This year Gentoo was represented by several developers, including Tim 
Yamin[4], Marcus Hanwell[5], Benjamin Smee[6], Tom Knight[7], Colin 
Morey[8], Tom Martin[9] and Herbie Hopkins[10]. Also present at the booth 
were Gentoo developers Rob Holland[11] and Andrea Barisani[12], who had 
just launched their new company, Inverse Path Ltd.[13], merely two days 
before the LWE opened its gates. Their brandnew venture - besides 
co-sponsoring the Gentoo booth - provides professional Gentoo support to 
corporate customers. 
 4. plasmaroo@g.o
 5. cryos@g.o
 6. strerror@g.o
 7. tomk@g.o
 8. peitholm@g.o
 9. slarti@g.o
 10. herbs@g.o
 11. tigger@g.o
 12. lcars@g.o
Figure 1.1: Left to right: James Le Cuirot (chewi) and developers 
strerror, plasmaroo, tomk, peitholm and cryos
The booth was fairly busy throughout the show, but the lack of internet 
access made it difficult to show the whole range of benefits Gentoo has. 
The decision to burn LiveCDs on demand worked out really nicely, as x86 
LiveCDs could be stock-piled and handed out as and when necessary, and 
amd64 or PPC media were burnt on demand whenever people needed them. 
Thanks to Computashop[14] on Tottenham Court Road for donating plenty of 
blank CDs and printed labels for them!. 
Figure 1.2: Tigger (left) and peitholm receive the Linux Format Awards 
from Nick Veitch (right)
Editor Nick Veitch from Linux Format[15], the UK Linux magazine, came to 
the booth to hand over the awards that the Gentoo project had won in March 
this year, in two categories, best support forum and best 
distribution[16]. Outside the Gentoo booth the LWE had its moments, too: 
Gentoo Forums veteran and GWN author George Prowse[17] managed to show 
ReactOS[18] to two head people at the Novell booth. They found the 
open-source clone of a Windows NT environment impressing enough to send 
their team over to talk with its founder and discuss the legality of the 
project. Other highlights included the free discussions (attended also by 
Microsoft), appearances by Mark Cox and Alan Cox from Red Hat, and by Mark 
Spencer from Digium. But as always, the main highlight for everyone was 
the chance to meet up with the other developers and the users they're in 
contact with every day. 
 17. cokehabit@×××××.com
To top off what was a great show, Digium president and Asterisk creator 
Mark Spencer[19] treated the entire Gentoo booth staff to drinks, food and 
talk about the future of open-source technology and Linux at a Sushi 
restaurant in Kensington. More photos from the expo, the after-show event, 
and other motives can be found at Marcus Hanwell's gallery[20]. 
2. Heard in the community
CFLAGS for various Athlons
Forum user dannysauer[21] asks about the various optimizations that can be 
found in the various Athlon chips from AMD. There seemed to be some 
confusion over what was best with Thunderbird, XP and MP models all having 
differentiating attributes. 
 * CFLAGS for various Athlons?[22]  
Grub and Reiser4
Version 4 of the Reiser filesystem gets tested by more and more people. 
Some want to use it everywhere, including the boot partition - but for 
that to work the bootloader needs to understand the filesystem. Patches 
for grub do exist, but reiser4 is not officially supported - should GRUB 
be patched or not? 
 * Grub and Reiser4 [23] 
Interactive emerge
Every now and then a "bad" ebuild exists that is interactive, asking the 
user for some input. This thread discusses why that is in most if not all 
circumstances not acceptable - imagine starting an "emerge -uD world" only 
to come back an hour later to find an ebuild asking you "do you really 
want to install me?" instead of just doing what it's been told... 
 * Interactive emerge [24] 
Gentoo classes?
As an idea to help Gentoo power users learn specific tools and concepts a 
user suggests to have "Gentoo Classes" - focused IRC discussions with a 
set timetable, supervised by someone with a reasonably good knowledge of 
the subject. While not without its faults this could turn out to be a nice 
experiment, with one criticism being that well-written documentation might 
be better than an IRC logfile. 
 * Gentoo Classes? [25] 
3. Gentoo international
Germany: Gentoo User Meeting in Oberhausen
4 November is the date for the next GUM at Gasthof Harlos[26] in 
Oberhausen, the town in Germany's Ruhr region where a whole nucleus of 
Gentoo developers happen to live. On the agenda next month, among other 
things are: preparations for the November developer conference[27] at 
Kransberg castle, and an introductory presentation of the "Capture the 
flag" contest (CTF[28]) to be followed by some practicing and a test bout 
right then and there. The meeting - Oberhausen GUMs are monthly events, on 
every first Saturday of a month - will start around 19:00, please reserve 
a seat[29] and - if need be - your Schnitzelplatte in advance. 
4. Gentoo in the press
WAGM-TV (6 October 2005)
Local CBS affiliate TV station WAGM[30] has a regular news segment called 
"Sci Tech Flash", produced by Samantha Hensell and scheduled each Thursday 
at 18:00. Last week WAGM-TV broadcast an interview with Michael 
Surran[31], computer science teacher and network administrator at the 
Greater Houlton Christian Academy[32], a private kindergarten-to-twelfth 
grade school in Houlton, a U.S. border-town to Canada. The 2:41 minutes 
spot covers the principles of steering a computer lab that's entirely 
Gentoo-driven: distributed compilation across all workstations, fast 
deployment, easy administration. And Surran does an excellent job of 
explaining in simple terms what source-based distributions are about. A 
thread in the Gentoo forums[33] keeps an updated list of mirror sites for 
the recording, in different formats to meet all possible codecs and 
bandwidth limitations. 
PPC Zone (8 October 2005)
Gentoo beta-testers wanted: a t-shirt bounty has been declared by Gentoo 
sponsor Genesi[34]. Launching an initiative for beta-testing the PPC build 
of the REBOL programming environment[35] we reported about a month ago, 
this post[36] at the PPC Zone forums promises "the coolest t-shirt we ever 
made" to the 100 first beta-testers who report back. 
5. Tips and tricks
Recovering some log space
To keep your computer uncluttered and clean you can use these commands to 
keep /var/log nice and tidy. 
Firstly, tar up those messages that are over a day old with: 
| Code Listing 5.1:                                                       |
| Find old logs                                                           |
|                                                                         |
|# find /var/log/remove -name -mtime +1 *.log -exec bzip2 -z {};          |
|                                                                         |
Then you can delete the tars' that are over 30 days old (or any amout of 
time, just edit the "-mtime +n" part) using this: 
| Code Listing 5.2:                                                       |
| Delete old tars                                                         |
|                                                                         |
|# find /var/log -name \*.bz2 -mtime +30 -exec rm {} \;                   |
|                                                                         |
6. Moves, adds, and changes
The following developers recently left the Gentoo team: 
 * Robb Romans 
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 
7. Gentoo Security
gtkdiskfree: Insecure temporary file creation
gtkdiskfree is vulnerable to symlink attacks, potentially allowing a local 
user to overwrite arbitrary files. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[37] 
Berkeley MPEG Tools: Multiple insecure temporary files
The Berkeley MPEG Tools use temporary files in various insecure ways, 
potentially allowing a local user to overwrite arbitrary files. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[38] 
Uim: Privilege escalation vulnerability
Under certain conditions, applications linked against Uim suffer from a 
privilege escalation vulnerability. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[39] 
Texinfo: Insecure temporary file creation
Texinfo is vulnerable to symlink attacks, potentially allowing a local 
user to overwrite arbitrary files. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[40] 
Ruby: Security bypass vulnerability
Ruby is vulnerable to a security bypass of the safe level mechanism. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[41] 
Dia: Arbitrary code execution through SVG import
Improperly sanitised data in Dia allows remote attackers to execute 
arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[42] 
RealPlayer, Helix Player: Format string vulnerability
RealPlayer and Helix Player are vulnerable to a format string 
vulnerability resulting in the execution of arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[43] 
xine-lib: Format string vulnerability
xine-lib contains a format string error in CDDB response handling that may 
be exploited to execute arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[44] 
Weex: Format string vulnerability
Weex contains a format string error that may be exploited by malicious 
servers to execute arbitrary code. 
For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[45] 
8. Bugzilla
 * Statistics 
 * Closed bug ranking 
 * New bug rankings 
The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla ([46]) to record and 
track bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the 
development team. Between 02 October 2005 and 09 October 2005, activity on 
the site has resulted in: 
 * 713 new bugs during this period 
 * 379 bugs closed or resolved during this period 
 * 40 previously closed bugs were reopened this period 
Of the 8511 currently open bugs: 103 are labeled 'blocker', 181 are 
labeled 'critical', and 530 are labeled 'major'. 
Closed bug rankings
The developers and teams who have closed the most bugs during this period 
 * Portage team[47], with 28 closed bugs[48]  
 * Gentoo Sound Team[49], with 22 closed bugs[50]  
 * AMD64 Porting Team[51], with 17 closed bugs[52]  
 * Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[53], with 16 closed bugs[54]  
 * Gentoo Security[55], with 13 closed bugs[56]  
 * Stefano Rossi[57], with 12 closed bugs[58]  
 * Gentoo Games[59], with 12 closed bugs[60]  
 * Gentoo for Mac OS X[61], with 11 closed bugs[62]  
 47. dev-portage@g.o
 49. sound@g.o
 51. amd64@g.o
 53. base-system@g.o
 55. security@g.o
 57. so@g.o
 59. games@g.o
 61. ppc-macos@g.o
New bug rankings
The developers and teams who have been assigned the most new bugs during 
this period are: 
 * AMD64 Testing Team[63], with 36 new bugs[64]  
 * Default Assignee for New Packages[65], with 28 new bugs[66]  
 * Gentoo Sound Team[67], with 15 new bugs[68]  
 * Sergey Kuleshov[69], with 13 new bugs[70]  
 * Default Assignee for Orphaned Packages[71], with 11 new bugs[72]  
 * media-video herd[73], with 9 new bugs[74]  
 * Gentoo Games[75], with 8 new bugs[76]  
 * Gentoo Kernel Bug Wranglers and Kernel Maintainers[77], with 7 new 
 63. amd64-test@g.o
 65. maintainer-wanted@g.o
 67. sound@g.o
 69. svyatogor@g.o
 71. maintainer-needed@g.o
 73. media-video@g.o
 75. games@g.o
 77. kernel@g.o
9. GWN feedback
Please send us your feedback[79] and help make the GWN better. 
 79. 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[80]  
 * Dutch[81]  
 * English[82]  
 * German[83]  
 * French[84]  
 * Japanese[85]  
 * Italian[86]  
 * Polish[87]  
 * Portuguese (Brazil)[88]  
 * Portuguese (Portugal)[89]  
 * Russian[90]  
 * Spanish[91]  
 * Turkish[92]  
Ulrich Plate <plate@g.o> - Editor
John N. Laliberte <allanonjl@g.o> - Author
Patrick Lauer <patrick@g.o> - Author
George Prowse <cokehabit@×××××.com> - Author

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