Search Results: "paul"

1 April 2020

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities March 2020




  • Debian wiki: approve accounts


Sponsors The dh-make-perl feature requests, file bug report, File::Libmagic changes, autoconf-archive change, libpst work and the purple-discord upload were sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

29 March 2020

Paulo Henrique de Lima Santana: My free software activities in February 2020

My free software activities in february 2020 March is ending but I finally wrote my monthly report about activities in Debian and Free Software in general for February. As I already wrote here, I attended to FOSDEM 2020 on February 1st and 2nd in Brussels. It was a amazing experience. After my return to Curitiba, I felt my energies renewed to start new challenges.

MiniDebConf Macei 2020 I continued helping to organize MiniDebConf and I got positive answers from 4Linux and and they are sponsorsing the event.

FLISOL 2020 I started to talk with Maristela from IEP - Instituto de Engenharia do Paran and after some messages and I joined a meeting with her and other members of C mara T cnica de Eletr nica, Computa o e Ci ncias de Dados. I explained about FLISOL in Curitiba to them and they agreed to host the event at IEP. I asked to use three spaces: Auditorium for FLISOL talks, Sal o Nobre for meetups from WordPress and PostgreSQL Communities, and the hall for Install Fest. Besides FLISOL, they would like to host other events and meetups from Communities in Curitiba as Python, PHP, and so on. At least one per month. I helped to schedule a PHP Paran Community meetup on March.

New job Since 17th I started to work at Rentcars as Infrastructure Analyst. I m very happy to work there because we use a lot of FLOSS and with nice people. Ubuntu LTS is the approved OS for desktops but I could install Debian on my laptop :-)

Misc I signed pgp keys from friends I met in Brussels and I had my pgp key signed by them. Finally my MR to the DebConf20 website fixing some texts was accepted. I have watched v deos from FOSDEM
  1. Until now, I saw these great talks:
  • Growing Sustainable Contributions Through Ambassador Networks
  • Building Ethical Software Under Capitalism
  • Cognitive biases, blindspots and inclusion
  • Building a thriving community in company-led open source projects
  • Building Community for your Company s OSS Projects
  • The Ethics of Open Source
  • Be The Leader You Need in Open Source
  • The next generation of contributors is not on IRC
  • Open Source Won, but Software Freedom Hasn t Yet
  • Open Source Under Attack
  • Lessons Learned from Cultivating Open Source Projects and Communities
That s all folks!

22 March 2020

Enrico Zini: Notable people

Lotte Reiniger. The Unsung Heroine of Early Animation
history people wikipedia
Lotte Reiniger pioneered early animation, yet her name remains largely unknown. We pay homage to her life and work, and reflect on why she never received the recognition she deserves.
Stephen Wolfram shares what he learned in researching Ada Lovelace's life, writings about the Analytical Engine, and computation of Bernoulli numbers.
Elizabeth Cochran Seaman[1] (May 5, 1864[2] January 27, 1922), better known by her pen name Nellie Bly, was an American journalist who was widely known for her record-breaking trip around the world in 72 days, in emulation of Jules Verne's fictional character Phileas Fogg, and an expos in which she worked undercover to report on a mental institution from within.[3] She was a pioneer in her field, and launched a new kind of investigative journalism.[4] Bly was also a writer, inventor, and industrialist.
Delia Ann Derbyshire (5 May 1937 3 July 2001)[1] was an English musician and composer of electronic music.[2] She carried out pioneering work with the BBC Radiophonic Workshop during the 1960s, including her electronic arrangement of the theme music to the British science-fiction television series Doctor Who.[3][4] She has been referred to as "the unsung heroine of British electronic music,"[3] having influenced musicians including Aphex Twin, the Chemical Brothers and Paul Hartnoll of Orbital.[5]
Charity Adams Earley (5 December 1918 13 January 2002) was the first African-American woman to be an officer in the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (later WACS) and was the commanding officer of the first battalion of African-American women to serve overseas during World War II. Adams was the highest ranking African-American woman in the army by the completion of the war.

1 March 2020

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities February 2020




  • Debian wiki: deploy changes, unblock IP addresses, approve new accounts, auto-approve email domains


Sponsors The apt-offline backport and purple-discord uploads were sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

10 November 2017

Paulo Santana: Hello world

I'm Debian Maintainer since january 2017.

31 October 2017

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities October 2017




  • Debian: respond to mail debug request, redirect hardware access seeker to guest account, redirect hardware donors to porters, redirect interview seeker to DPL, reboot system with dead service
  • Debian mentors: security updates, reboot
  • Debian wiki: upgrade search db format, remove incorrect bans, whitelist email addresses, disable accounts with bouncing email, update email for accounts with bouncing email
  • Debian website: remove need for a website rebuild
  • Openmoko: restart web server, set web server process limits, install monitoring tool

Sponsors The talloc/cmocka uploads and the remmina issue were sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

2 October 2017

Jonathan Dowland: PhD

I'm very excited to (finally) announce that I've embarked upon a part-time PhD in Computing Science at Newcastle University! I'm at the very beginning of a journey that is expected to last about six years. The area I am going to be working in is functional stream processing and distributed systems architecture, in the context of IoT. This means investigating and working with technologies such as Apache Spark; containers (inc. Docker); Kubernetes and OpenShift; but also Haskell. My supervisor is Prof. Paul Watson. This would not be possible without the support of my employer, Red Hat, for which I am extremely grateful. I hope to write much more about this topic here in the near future, so watch this space!

1 October 2017

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities September 2017




  • icns: merged patches
  • Debian: help guest user with access, investigate/escalate broken network, restart broken stunnels, investigate static.d.o storage, investigate weird RAID mails, ask hoster to investigate power issue,
  • Debian mentors: lintian/security updates & reboot
  • Debian wiki: merged & deployed patch, redirect DDTSS translator, redirect user support requests, whitelist email addresses, update email for accounts with bouncing email,
  • Debian derivatives census: merged/deployed patches
  • Debian PTS: debugged cron mails, deployed changes, reran scripts, fixed configuration file
  • Openmoko: debug reboot issue, debug load issues


Sponsors The samba bug was sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

30 September 2017

Chris Lamb: Free software activities in September 2017

Here is my monthly update covering what I have been doing in the free software world in September 2017 (previous month):
Reproducible builds

Whilst anyone can inspect the source code of free software for malicious flaws, most software is distributed pre-compiled to end users. The motivation behind the Reproducible Builds effort is to allow verification that no flaws have been introduced either maliciously or accidentally during this compilation process by promising identical results are always generated from a given source, thus allowing multiple third-parties to come to a consensus on whether a build was compromised. I have generously been awarded a grant from the Core Infrastructure Initiative to fund my work in this area. This month I:
  • Published a short blog post about how to determine which packages on your system are reproducible. [...]
  • Submitted a pull request for Numpy to make the generated files reproducible. [...]
  • Provided a patch to GTK upstream to ensure the immodules.cache files are reproducible. [...]
  • Within Debian:
    • Updated, moving it to HTTPS, adding cachebusting as well as keeping the number up-to-date.
    • Submitted the following patches to fix reproducibility-related toolchain issues:
      • gdk-pixbuf: Make the output of gdk-pixbuf-query-loaders reproducible. (#875704)
      • texlive-bin: Make PDF IDs reproducible. (#874102)
    • Submitted a patch to fix a reproducibility issue in doit.
  • Categorised a large number of packages and issues in the Reproducible Builds "notes" repository.
  • Chaired our monthly IRC meeting. [...]
  • Worked on publishing our weekly reports. (#123, #124, #125, #126 & #127)

I also made the following changes to our tooling:

reproducible-check is our script to determine which packages actually installed on your system are reproducible or not.

  • Handle multi-architecture systems correctly. (#875887)
  • Use the "restricted" data file to mask transient issues. (#875861)
  • Expire the cache file after one day and base the local cache filename on the remote name. [...] [...]
I also blogged about this utility. [...]

diffoscope is our in-depth and content-aware diff utility that can locate and diagnose reproducibility issues.

  • Filed an issue attempting to identify the causes behind an increased number of timeouts visible in our CI infrastructure, including running a number of benchmarks of recent versions. (#875324)
  • New features:
    • Add "binwalking" support to analyse concatenated CPIO archives such as initramfs images. (#820631).
    • Print a message if we are reading data from standard input. [...]
  • Bug fixes:
    • Loosen matching of file(1)'s output to ensure we correctly also match TTF files under file version 5.32. [...]
    • Correct references to path_apparent_size in comparators.utils.file and self.buf in diffoscope.diff. [...] [...]
  • Testing:
    • Make failing some critical flake8 tests result in a failed build. [...]
    • Check we identify all CPIO fixtures. [...]
  • Misc:
    • No need for try-assert-except block in [...]
    • Compare types with identity not equality. [...] [...]
    • Use's lazy argument interpolation. [...]
    • Remove unused imports. [...]
    • Numerous PEP8, flake8, whitespace, other cosmetic tidy-ups.


strip-nondeterminism is our tool to remove specific non-deterministic results from a completed build.

  • Log which handler processed a file. (#876140). [...]


disorderfs is our FUSE-based filesystem that deliberately introduces non-determinism into directory system calls in order to flush out reproducibility issues.

Debian My activities as the current Debian Project Leader are covered in my monthly "Bits from the DPL" email to the debian-devel-announce mailing list.
Lintian I made a large number of changes to Lintian, the static analysis tool for Debian packages. It reports on various errors, omissions and general quality-assurance issues to maintainers: I also blogged specifically about the Lintian 2.5.54 release.

Patches contributed
  • debconf: Please add a context manager to (#877096)
  • Add pronouns to ALL_STATUS_DESC. (#875128)
  • user-setup: Please drop set_special_users hack added for "the convenience of heavy testers". (#875909)
  • postgresql-common: Please update README.Debian for PostgreSQL 10. (#876438)
  • django-sitetree: Should not mask test failures. (#877321)
  • charmtimetracker:
    • Missing binary dependency on libqt5sql5-sqlite. (#873918)
    • Please drop "Cross-Platform" from package description. (#873917)
I also submitted 5 patches for packages with incorrect calls to find(1) in debian/rules against hamster-applet, libkml, pyferret, python-gssapi & roundcube.

Debian LTS

This month I have been paid to work 15 hours on Debian Long Term Support (LTS). In that time I did the following:
  • "Frontdesk" duties, triaging CVEs, etc.
  • Documented an example usage of autopkgtests to test security changes.
  • Issued DLA 1084-1 and DLA 1085-1 for libidn and libidn2-0 to fix an integer overflow vulnerabilities in Punycode handling.
  • Issued DLA 1091-1 for unrar-free to prevent a directory traversal vulnerability from a specially-crafted .rar archive. This update introduces an regression test.
  • Issued DLA 1092-1 for libarchive to prevent malicious .xar archives causing a denial of service via a heap-based buffer over-read.
  • Issued DLA 1096-1 for wordpress-shibboleth, correcting an cross-site scripting vulnerability in the Shibboleth identity provider module.

  • python-django:
    • 1.11.5-1 New upstream security release. (#874415)
    • 1.11.5-2 Apply upstream patch to fix QuerySet.defer() with "super" and "subclass" fields. (#876816)
    • 2.0~alpha1-2 New upstream alpha release of Django 2.0, dropping support for Python 2.x.
  • redis:
    • 4.0.2-1 New upstream release.
    • 4.0.2-2 Update 0004-redis-check-rdb autopkgtest test to ensure that the redis.rdb file exists before testing against it.
    • 4.0.2-2~bpo9+1 Upload to stretch-backports.
  • aptfs (0.11.0-1) New upstream release, moving away from using /var/lib/apt/lists internals. Thanks to Julian Andres Klode for a helpful bug report. (#874765)
  • lintian (2.5.53, 2.5.54) New upstream releases. (Documented in more detail above.)
  • bfs (1.1.2-1) New upstream release.
  • docbook-to-man (1:2.0.0-39) Tighten autopkgtests and enable testing via
  • python-daiquiri (1.3.0-1) New upstream release.

I also made the following non-maintainer uploads (NMUs):

Debian bugs filed
  • clipit: Please choose a sensible startup default in "live" mode. (#875903)
  • git-buildpackage: Please add a --reset option to gbp pull. (#875852)
  • bluez: Please default Device "friendly name" to hostname without domain. (#874094)
  • Please explicitly link to packages,tracker (#876746)
  • Requests for packaging:
    • selfspy log everything you do on the computer. (#873955)
    • shoogle use the Google API from the shell. (#873916)

FTP Team

As a Debian FTP assistant I ACCEPTed 86 packages: bgw-replstatus, build-essential, caja-admin, caja-rename, calamares, cdiff, cockpit, colorized-logs, comptext, comptty, copyq, django-allauth, django-paintstore, django-q, django-test-without-migrations, docker-runc, emacs-db, emacs-uuid, esxml, fast5, flake8-docstrings, gcc-6-doc, gcc-7-doc, gcc-8, golang-github-go-logfmt-logfmt, golang-github-google-go-cmp, golang-github-nightlyone-lockfile, golang-github-oklog-ulid, golang-pault-go-macchanger, h2o, inhomog, ip4r, ldc, libayatana-appindicator, libbson-perl, libencoding-fixlatin-perl, libfile-monitor-lite-perl, libhtml-restrict-perl, libmojo-rabbitmq-client-perl, libmoosex-types-laxnum-perl, libparse-mime-perl, libplack-test-agent-perl, libpod-projectdocs-perl, libregexp-pattern-license-perl, libstring-trim-perl, libtext-simpletable-autowidth-perl, libvirt, linux, mac-fdisk, myspell-sq, node-coveralls, node-module-deps, nov-el, owncloud-client, pantomime-clojure, pg-dirtyread, pgfincore, pgpool2, pgsql-asn1oid, phpliteadmin, powerlevel9k, pyjokes, python-evdev, python-oslo.db, python-pygal, python-wsaccel, python3.7, r-cran-bindrcpp, r-cran-dotcall64, r-cran-glue, r-cran-gtable, r-cran-pkgconfig, r-cran-rlang, r-cran-spatstat.utils, resolvconf-admin, retro-gtk, ring-ssl-clojure, robot-detection, rpy2-2.8, ruby-hocon, sass-stylesheets-compass, selinux-dbus, selinux-python, statsmodels, webkit2-sharp & weston. I additionally filed 4 RC bugs against packages that had incomplete debian/copyright files against: comptext, comptext, ldc & python-oslo.concurrency.

26 September 2017

Reproducible builds folks: Reproducible Builds: Weekly report #126

Here's what happened in the Reproducible Builds effort between Sunday September 17th and Saturday September 23rd 2017: Media coverage Reproducible work in other packages Packages reviewed and fixed, and bugs filed Reviews of unreproducible packages 1 package reviews was added, 49 have been updated and 54 have been removed in this week, adding to our knowledge about identified issues. One issue type was updated: Weekly QA work During our reproducibility testing, FTBFS bugs have been detected and reported by: diffoscope development Version 87 was uploaded to unstable by Mattia Rizzolo. It included contributions from: strip-nondeterminism development reprotest development Version 0.7 was uploaded to unstable by Ximin Luo: Vagrant Cascadian and Holger Levsen: Holger Levsen: Misc. This week's edition was written by Bernhard M. Wiedemann, Chris Lamb, Vagrant Cascadian & reviewed by a bunch of Reproducible Builds folks on IRC & the mailing lists.

24 September 2017

Julian Andres Klode: APT 1.5 is out

APT 1.5 is out, after almost 3 months the release of 1.5 alpha 1, and almost six months since the release of 1.4 on April 1st. This release cycle was unusually short, as 1.4 was the stretch release series and the zesty release series, and we waited for the latter of these releases before we started 1.5. In related news, 1.4.8 hit stretch-proposed-updates today, and is waiting in the unapproved queue for zesty. This release series moves https support from apt-transport-https into apt proper, bringing with it support for https:// proxies, and support for autodetectproxy scripts that return http, https, and socks5h proxies for both http and https. Unattended updates and upgrades now work better: The dependency on network-online was removed and we introduced a meta wait-online helper with support for NetworkManager, systemd-networkd, and connman that allows us to wait for network even if we want to run updates directly after a resume (which might or might not have worked before, depending on whether update ran before or after network was back up again). This also improves a boot performance regression for systems with rc.local files: The rc.local.service unit specified, and login stuff was After=rc.local.service, and apt-daily.timer was, causing to be pulled into the boot and the rc.local.service ordering dependency to take effect, significantly slowing down the boot. An earlier less intrusive variant of that fix is in 1.4.8: It just moves the Want/After from apt-daily.timer to apt-daily.service so most boots are uncoupled now. I hope we get the full solution into stretch in a later point release, but we should gather some experience first before discussing this with the release time. Balint Reczey also provided a patch to increase the time out before killing the daily upgrade service to 15 minutes, to actually give unattended-upgrades some time to finish an in-progress update. Honestly, I d have though the machine hung up and force rebooted it after 5 seconds already. (this patch is also in 1.4.8) We also made sure that unreadable config files no longer cause an error, but only a warning, as that was sort of a regression from previous releases; and we added documentation for /etc/apt/auth.conf, so people actually know the preferred way to place sensitive data like passwords (and can make their sources.list files world-readable again). We also fixed apt-cdrom to support discs without MD5 hashes for Sources (the Files field), and re-enabled support for udev-based detection of cdrom devices which was accidentally broken for 4 years, as it was trying to load at runtime, but that library had an SONAME change to we now link against it normally. Furthermore, if certain information in Release files change, like the codename, apt will now request confirmation from the user, avoiding a scenario where a user has stable in their sources.list and accidentally upgrades to the next release when it becomes stable. Paul Wise contributed patches to allow configuring the apt-daily intervals more easily apt-daily is invoked twice a day by systemd but has more fine-grained internal timestamp files. You can now specify the intervals in seconds, minutes, hours, and day units, or specify always to always run (that is, up to twice a day on systemd, once per day on non-systemd platforms). Development for the 1.6 series has started, and I intent to upload a first alpha to unstable in about a week, removing the apt-transport-https package and enabling compressed index files by default (save space, a lot of space, at not much performance cost thanks to lz4). There will also be some small clean ups in there, but I don t expect any life-changing changes for now. I think our new approach of uploading development releases directly to unstable instead of parking them in experimental is working out well. Some people are confused why alpha releases appear in unstable, but let me just say one thing: These labels basically just indicate feature-completeness, and not stability. An alpha is just very likely to get a lot more features, a beta is less likely (all the big stuff is in), and the release candidates just fix bugs. Also, we now have 3 active stable series: The 1.2 LTS series, 1.4 medium LTS, and 1.5. 1.2 receives updates as part of Ubuntu 16.04 (xenial), 1.4 as part of Debian 9.0 (stretch) and Ubuntu 17.04 (zesty); whereas 1.5 will only be supported for 9 months (as part of Ubuntu 17.10). I think the stable release series are working well, although 1.4 is a bit tricky being shared by stretch and zesty right now (but zesty is history soon, so ).
Filed under: Debian, Ubuntu

1 September 2017

Bits from Debian: New Debian Developers and Maintainers (July and August 2017)

The following contributors got their Debian Developer accounts in the last two months: The following contributors were added as Debian Maintainers in the last two months: Congratulations!

31 August 2017

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities August 2017




  • myrepos: get commit/admin access from joeyh at DebConf17, add commit/admin access for other patch submitters, apply my stack of patches
  • Debian: fix weird log file issues, redirect hardware donor, cleaned up a weird dir, fix some OOB info, ask for TLS on meetings-archive.d.n, check an I/O error, restart broken stunnels, powercycle 1 borked machine,
  • Debian mentors: lintian/security updates & reboot
  • Debian wiki: remove some stray cache files, whitelist 3 email domains, whitelist some email addresses, disable 1 spammer account, disable 1 accounts with bouncing email,
  • Debian QA: apply patch to fix PTS watch file errors, deploy changes
  • Debian derivatives census: run scripts for Purism, remove some noise from logs, trigger a recheck, merge fix by Unit193, deploy changes
  • Openmoko: security updates, reboots, enable unattended-upgrades

  • Attended DebConf17 and provided some input in BoFs
  • Sent Misc Dev News #44
  • Invite Google gLinux (on IRC) to the Debian derivatives census
  • Welcome Sven Haardiek (of GreenboneOS) to the Debian derivatives census
  • Inquire about the status of Canaima

Sponsors The samba bug report was sponsored by my employer. All other work was done on a volunteer basis.

1 August 2017

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities July 2017




  • Debian: fsck/reboot a buildd, reboot a segfaulting buildd, report/fix broken hoster contact, ping hoster about down machines, forcibly reset backup machine, merged cache patch for network-test.d.o, do some samhain dances, fix two stunnel services, update an IP address in LDAP, fix /etc/aliases on one host, reboot 1 non-responsive VM
  • Debian mentors: security updates, reboot
  • Debian wiki: whitelist several email addresses
  • Debian build log scanner: deploy my changes
  • Debian PTS: deploy my changes
  • Openmoko: security updates & reboots

  • Ping Advogato users on Planet Debian about updating/removing their feeds since it shut down
  • Invite deepin to the Debian derivatives census
  • Welcome Deepin to the Debian derivatives census
  • Inquire about the status of GreenboneOS, HandyLinux

Sponsors All work was done on a volunteer basis.

6 July 2017

Holger Levsen:

a media experiment: / G20 not welcome Our view currently every day and night: No one is illegal! No football for fascists! The FC/MC is a collective initiative to change the perception of the G20 in Hamburg - the summit itself and the protests surrounding it. FC/MC is a media experiment, located in the stadium of the amazing St.Pauli football club. We will operate until this Sunday, providing live coverage (text, photos, audio, video), back stories and much much more. Another world is possible! Disclaimer: I'm not involved in content generation, I'm just doing computer stuff as usual, but that said, I really like the work of those who are! :-)

1 July 2017

Russ Allbery: End of month haul

For some reason, June is always incredibly busy for me. It's historically the most likely month in which I don't post anything here at all except reviews (and sometimes not even that). But I'm going to tell you about what books I bought (or were given to me) on the very last day of the month to break the pattern of no journal postings in June. Ted Chiang Arrival (Stories of Your Life) (sff collection)
Eoin Colfer Artemis Fowl (sff)
Philip K. Dick The Man Who Japed (sff)
Yoon Ha Lee Raven Strategem (sff)
Paul K. Longmore Why I Burned My Book (nonfiction)
Melina Marchetta The Piper's Son (mainstream)
Jules Verne For the Flag (sff, sort of) This is a more than usually eclectic mix. The Chiang is his Stories of Your Life collection reissued under the title of Arrival to cash in on the huge success of the movie based on one of his short stories. I'm not much of a short fiction reader, but I've heard so many good things about Chiang that I'm going to give it a try. The Longmore is a set of essays about disability rights that has been on my radar for a while. I finally got pushed into buying it (plus the first Artemis Fowl book and the Marchetta) because I've been reading back through every review Light has written. (I wish I were even close to that amusingly snarky in reviews, and she manages to say in a few paragraphs what usually takes me a whole essay.) Finally, the Dick and the Verne were gifts from a co-worker from a used book store in Ireland. Minor works by both authors, but nice, old copies of the books.

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities June 2017




  • Debian: redirect 2 users to support channels, redirect 1 person to the mirrors team, investigate SMTP TLS question, fix ACL issue, restart dead exim4 service
  • Debian mentors: service restarts, security updates & reboot
  • Debian QA: deploy my changes
  • Debian website: release related rebuilds, rebuild installation-guide
  • Debian wiki: whitelist several email addresses, whitelist 1 domain
  • Debian package tracker: deploy my changes
  • Debian derivatives census: deploy my changes
  • Openmoko: security updates & reboots.


Sponsors All work was done on a volunteer basis.

19 June 2017

Vasudev Kamath: Update: - Shell pipelines with subprocess crate and use of Exec::shell function

In my previous post I used Exec::shell function from subprocess crate and passed it string generated by interpolating --author argument. This string was then run by the shell via Exec::shell. After publishing post I got ping on IRC by Jonas Smedegaard and Paul Wise that I should replace Exec::shell, as it might be prone to errors or vulnerabilities of shell injection attack. Indeed they were right, in hurry I did not completely read the function documentation which clearly mentions this fact.
When invoking this function, be careful not to interpolate arguments into the string run by the shell, such as Exec::shell(format!("sort ", filename)). Such code is prone to errors and, if filename comes from an untrusted source, to shell injection attacks. Instead, use Exec::cmd("sort").arg(filename).
Though I'm not directly taking input from untrusted source, its still possible that the string I got back from git log command might contain some oddly formatted string with characters of different encoding which could possibly break the Exec::shell , as I'm not sanitizing the shell command. When we use Exec::cmd and pass argument using .args chaining, the library takes care of creating safe command line. So I went in and modified the function to use Exec::cmd instead of Exec::shell. Below is updated function.
fn copyright_fromgit(repo: &str) -> Result<Vec<String>>  
    let tempdir = TempDir::new_in(".", "debcargo")?;
     .args(&["clone", "--bare", repo, tempdir.path().to_str().unwrap()])
    let author_process =  
        Exec::shell(OsStr::new("git log --format=\"%an <%ae>\"")).cwd(tempdir.path())  
        Exec::shell(OsStr::new("sort -u"))
    let authors = author_process.stdout_str().trim().to_string();
    let authors: Vec<&str> = authors.split('\n').collect();
    let mut notices: Vec<String> = Vec::new();
    for author in &authors  
        let author_string = format!("--author= ", author);
        let first =  
             .args(&["log", "--format=%ad",
             .cwd(tempdir.path())   Exec::shell(OsStr::new("head -n1"))
        let latest =  
             .args(&["log", "--format=%ad", "--date=format:%Y", &author_string])
             .cwd(tempdir.path())   Exec::shell("head -n1")
        let start = i32::from_str(first.stdout_str().trim())?;
        let end = i32::from_str(latest.stdout_str().trim())?;
        let cnotice = match start.cmp(&end)  
            Ordering::Equal => format!(" ,  ", start, author),
            _ => format!(" - ,  ", start, end, author),
I still use Exec::shell for generating author list, this is not problematic as I'm not interpolating arguments to create command string.

14 June 2017

Antoine Beaupr : Alioth moving toward pagure

Since 2003, the Debian project has been running a server called Alioth to host source code version control systems. The server will hit the end of life of the Debian LTS release (Wheezy) next year; that deadline raised some questions regarding the plans for the server over the coming years. Naturally, that led to a discussion regarding possible replacements. In response, the current Alioth maintainer, Alexander Wirt, announced a sprint to migrate to pagure, a free-software "Git-centered forge" written in Python for the Fedora project, which LWN covered last year. Alioth currently runs FusionForge, previously known as GForge, which is the free-software fork of the SourceForge code base when that service closed its source in 2001. Alioth hosts source code repositories, mainly Git and Subversion (SVN) and, like other "forge" sites, also offers forums, issue trackers, and mailing list services. While other alternatives are still being evaluated, a consensus has emerged on a migration plan from FusionForage to a more modern and minimal platform based on pagure.

Why not GitLab? While this may come as a surprise to some who would expect Debian to use the more popular GitLab project, the discussion and decision actually took place a while back. During a lengthy debate last year, Debian contributors discussed the relative merits of different code-hosting platforms, following the initiative of Debian Developer "Pirate" Praveen Arimbrathodiyil to package GitLab for Debian. At that time, Praveen also got a public GitLab instance running for Debian (, which was sponsored by GitLab B.V. the commercial entity behind the GitLab project. The sponsorship was originally offered in 2015 by the GitLab CEO, presumably to counter a possible move to GitHub, as there was a discussion about creating a GitHub Organization for Debian at the time. The deployment of a Debian-specific GitLab instance then raised the question of the overlap with the already existing service, which is backed by Alioth's FusionForge deployment. It then seemed natural that the new GitLab instance would replace Alioth. But when Praveen directly proposed to move to GitLab, Wirt stepped in and explained that a migration plan was already in progress. The plan then was to migrate to a simpler gitolite-based setup, a decision that was apparently made in corridor discussions surrounding the Alioth Git replacement BoF held during Debconf 2015. The first objection raised by Wirt against GitLab was its "huge number of dependencies". Another issue Wirt identified was the "open core / enterprise model", preferring a "real open source system", an opinion which seems shared by other participants on the mailing list. Wirt backed his concerns with an hypothetical example:
Debian needs feature X but it is already in the enterprise version. We make a patch and, for commercial reasons, it never gets merged (they already sell it in the enterprise version). Which means we will have to fork the software and keep those patches forever. Been there done that. For me, that isn't acceptable.
This concern was further deepened when GitLab's Director of Strategic Partnerships, Eliran Mesika, explained the company's stewardship policy that explains how GitLab decides which features end up in the proprietary version. Praveen pointed out that:
[...] basically it boils down to features that they consider important for organizations with less than 100 developers may get accepted. I see that as a red flag for a big community like debian.
Since there are over 600 Debian Developers, the community seems to fall within the needs of "enterprise" users. The features the Debian community may need are, by definition, appropriate only to the "Enterprise Edition" (GitLab EE), the non-free version, and are therefore unlikely to end up in the "Community Edition" (GitLab CE), the free-software version. Interestingly, Mesika asked for clarification on which features were missing, explaining that GitLab is actually open to adding features to GitLab CE. The response from Debian Developer Holger Levsen was categorical: "It's not about a specific patch. Free GitLab and we can talk again." But beyond the practical and ethical concerns, some specific features Debian needs are currently only in GitLab EE. For example, systems use LDAP for authentication, which would obviously be useful in a GitLab deployment; GitLab CE supports basic LDAP authentication, but advanced features, like group or SSH-key synchronization, are only available in GitLab EE. Wirt also expressed concern about the Contributor License Agreement that GitLab B.V. requires contributors to sign when they send patches, which forces users to allow the release of their code under a non-free license. The debate then went on going through a exhaustive inventory of different free-software alternatives:
  • GitLab, a Ruby-based GitHub replacement, dual-licensed MIT/Commercial
  • Gogs, Go, MIT
  • Gitblit, Java, Apache-licensed
  • Kallithea, in Python, also supports Mercurial, GPLv3
  • and finally, pagure, also written Python, GPLv2
A feature comparison between each project was created in the Debian wiki as well. In the end, however, Praveen gave up on replacing Alioth with GitLab because of the controversy and moved on to support the pagure migration, which resolved the discussion in July 2016. More recently, Wirt admitted in an IRC conversation that "on the technical side I like GitLab a lot more than pagure" and that "as a user, GitLab is much nicer than pagure and it has those nice CI [continuous integration] features". However, as he explained in his blog "GitLab is Opencore, [and] that it is not entirely opensource. I don't think we should use software licensed under such a model for one of our core services" which leaves pagure as the only stable candidate. Other candidates were excluded on technical grounds, according to Wirt: Gogs "doesn't scale well" and a quick security check didn't yield satisfactory results; "Gitblit is Java" and Kallithea doesn't have support for accessing repositories over SSH (although there is a pending pull request to add the feature). In an email interview, Sid Sijbrandij, CEO of GitLab, did say that "we want to make sure that our open source edition can be used by open source projects". He gave examples of features liberated following requests by the community, such as branded login pages for the VLC project and GitLab Pages after popular demand. He stressed that "There are no artificial limits in our open source edition and some organizations use it with more than 20.000 users." So if the concern of the Debian community is that features may be missing from GitLab CE, there is definitely an opening from GitLab to add those features. If, however, the concern is purely ethical, it's hard to see how an agreement could be reached. As Sijbrandij put it:
On the mailinglist it seemed that some Debian maintainers do not agree with our open core business model and demand that there is no proprietary version. We respect that position but we don't think we can compete with the purely proprietary software like GitHub with this model.

Working toward a pagure migration The issue of Alioth maintenance came up again last month when Boyuan Yang asked what would happen to Alioth when support for Debian LTS (Wheezy) ends next year. Wirt brought up the pagure migration proposal and the community tried to make a plan for the migration. One of the issues raised was the question of the non-Git repositories hosted on Alioth, as pagure, like GitLab, only supports Git. Indeed, Ben Hutchings calculated that while 90% (\~19,000) of the repositories currently on Alioth are Git, there are 2,400 SVN repositories and a handful of Mercurial, Bazaar (bzr), Darcs, Arch, and even CVS repositories. As part of an informal survey, however, most packaging teams explained they either had already migrated away from SVN to Git or were in the process of doing so. The largest CVS user, the web site team, also explained it was progressively migrating to Git. Mattia Rizzolo then proposed that older repository services like SVN could continue running even if FusionForge goes down, as FusionForge is, after all, just a web interface to manage those back-end services. Repository creation would be disabled, but older repositories would stay operational until they migrate to Git. This would, effectively, mean the end of non-Git repository support for new projects in the Debian community, at least officially. Another issue is the creation of a Debian package for pagure. Ironically, while Praveen and other Debian maintainers have been working for 5 years to package GitLab for Debian, pagure isn't packaged yet. Antonio Terceiro, another Debian Developer, explained this isn't actually a large problem for services: "note that DSA [Debian System Administrator team] does not need/want the service software itself packaged, only its dependencies". Indeed, for Debian-specific code bases like or, it may not make sense to have the overhead of maintaining Debian packages since those tools have limited use outside of the Debian project directly. While Debian derivatives and other distributions could reuse them, what usually happens is that other distributions roll their own software, like Ubuntu did with the Launchpad project. Still, Paul Wise, a member of the DSA team, reasoned that it was better, in the long term, to have Debian packages for services:
Personally I'm leaning towards the feeling that all configuration, code and dependencies for Debian services should be packaged and subjected to the usual Debian QA activities but I acknowledge that the current archive setup (testing migration plus backporting etc) doesn't necessarily make this easy.
Wise did say that "DSA doesn't have any hard rules/policy written down, just evaluation on a case-by-case basis" which probably means that pagure packaging will not be a blocker for deployment. The last pending issue is the question of the mailing lists hosted on Alioth, as pagure doesn't offer mailing list management (nor does GitLab). In fact, there are three different mailing list services for the Debian project: Wirt, with his "list-master hat" on, explained that the main mailing list service is "not really suited as a self-service" and expressed concern at the idea of migrating the large number mailing lists hosted on Alioth. Indeed, there are around 1,400 lists on Alioth while the main service has a set of 300 lists selected by the list masters. No solution for those mailing lists was found at the time of this writing. In the end, it seems like the Debian project has chosen pagure, the simpler, less featureful, but also less controversial, solution and will use the same hosting software as their fellow Linux distribution, Fedora. Wirt is also considering using FreeIPA for account management on top of pagure. The plan is to migrate away from FusionForge one bit at a time, and pagure is the solution for the first step: the Git repositories. Lists, other repositories, and additional features of FusionForge will be dealt with later on, but Wirt expects a plan to come out of the upcoming sprint. It will also be interesting to see how the interoperability promises of pagure will play out in the Debian world. Even though the federation features of pagure are still at the early stages, one can already clone issues and pull requests as Git repositories, which allows for a crude federation mechanism. In any case, given the long history and the wide variety of workflows in the Debian project, it is unlikely that a single tool will solve all problems. Alioth itself has significant overlap with other Debian services; not only does it handle mailing lists and forums, but it also has its own issue tracker that overlaps with the Debian bug tracking system (BTS). This is just the way things are in Debian: it is an old project with lots of moving part. As Jonathan Dowland put it: "The nature of the project is loosely-coupled, some redundancy, lots of legacy cruft, and sadly more than one way to do it." Hopefully, pagure will not become part of that "legacy redundant cruft". But at this point, the focus is on keeping the services running in a simpler, more maintainable way. The discussions between Debian and GitLab are still going on as we speak, but given how controversial the "open core" model used by GitLab is for the Debian community, pagure does seem like a more logical alternative.
Note: this article first appeared in the Linux Weekly News.

1 June 2017

Paul Wise: FLOSS Activities May 2017




  • Debian: discuss mail bounces with a hoster, check perms of LE results, add 1 user to a group, re-sent some TLS cert expiry mail, clean up mail bounce flood, approve some TLS certs, do the samhain dance thrice, end 1 samhain mail flood, diagnose/fix LDAP update issue, relay DebConf cert expiry mails, reboot 2 non-responsive VM, merged patches for meta-package,
  • Debian mentors: lintian/security updates & reboot
  • Debian wiki: delete stray tmp file, whitelist 14 email addresses, disable 1 accounts with bouncing email, ping 3 persons with bouncing email
  • Debian website: update/push index/CD/distrib
  • Debian QA: deploy my changes, disable some removed suites in qadb
  • Debian PTS: strip whitespace from existing pages, invalidate sigs so pages get a rebuild
  • Debian derivatives census: deploy changes
  • Openmoko: security updates & reboots.

  • Invite Purism (on IRC), XBian (also on IRC), DuZeru to the Debian derivatives census
  • Respond to the shutdown of Parsix
  • Report BlankOn fileserver and Huayra webserver issues
  • Organise a transition of Ubuntu/Endless Debian derivatives census maintainers
  • Advocate against Debian having a monopoly on hardware certification
  • Advocate working with existing merchandise vendors
  • Start a discussion about Debian membership in other organisations
  • Advocate for HPE to join the LVFS & support fwupd

Sponsors All work was done on a volunteer basis.