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Misc development news (#6)

Raphael Hertzog has another bunch of development news for us in this latest update.
The news are collected on
Feel free to contribute.

Python 2.5 by default

The default python in unstable has been switched to python 2.5. We've
scheduled rebuilds for packages that needed one (around 100), and we'll
be hand-holding this transition. In order not to disrupt this effort, be
sure to upgrade your sid chroot so that you don't accidentally upload
packages built against the previous python version.

— Adeodato Simó

Use a recent devscripts

With the introduction of the new Checksums-* fields in the changes file,
debsign had to be fixed to also update the checksums in the new fields
(see #474949). Be sure to run devscripts 2.10.25 or newer, otherwise
you'll generate broken *.changes files which will be rejected by dak.

The current version of mergechanges is also behaving badly with those new
fields, it will be fixed in the next version of devscripts (2.10.26).

— Raphaël Hertzog, Joerg Jaspert

dpkg-buildpackage sets default value to CFLAGS, etc.

Since dpkg 1.14.17, dpkg-buildpackage will define the environment
variables CFLAGS, CXXFLAGS, CPPFLAGS, LDFLAGS and FFLAGS. The goal is to
be able to easily recompile packages with supplementary compilation flags
and to simplify the debian/rules files since CFLAGS has the right default
value (no need to special case for DEB_BUILD_OPTIONS=noopt).

But this change has many consequences which can lead to problems (several
dozens FTBFS have been filed due to this change). The most important
change is related to make's behavior: since the variables exist in the
environment when make is called, they are automatically exported to the
various commands called in the makefile (possibly modified by the
variable assignation in debian/rules). Some broken build systems do not
cope with the presence of those variables.

Please note that debuild currently doesn't call dpkg-buildpackage and
thus can't be used to reproduce the various FTBFS filed (see #476100).

— Raphaël Hertzog

Please help test “etch and a half”

The next point release of etch is targeted to be the “etch and a half”
release, with the limited intent of increasing the hardware supported by
the Debian 4.0 release. An updated kernel based on 2.6.24 and some
updated X drivers are making their way to proposed-updates. Developers
are encouraged to start testing these packages and report issues to the
associated package maintainers and the project-etchnahalf list. See for more information.

— Dann Frazier

FTFBS on packages build-depending on libqt4-dev

If your package is build-depending on libqt4-dev and is currently failing
to build from sources, please wait for the next qt4-x11 package revision
before adding a gazillion of build-deps to your package.

— Sune Vuorela

“Someday someone should do this…”

Sometimes I stumble on interesting or useful ideas on mailingslists,
which should be done, but the person having that in mind, doesn't have
time to do those. So I came up with idea of a wiki page, where those
tasks could be collected, so that people willing to do some useful work
(for example because they are in NM and need to prove their skills) can
maybe find some.

I've started collecting some on and would
be happy if you'd also use this page, to collect such ideas (in a form
other people are able to understand) or to pick those ideas and implement

— Holger Levsen

– Raphaël Hertzog Le best-seller français mis à jour pour Debian Etch :

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