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Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 23 May 2005



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pylon at gentoo

May 22, 2005, 5:46 PM

Post #1 of 1 (821 views)
Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 23 May 2005

Gentoo Weekly Newsletter
This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 23 May 2005.

1. Gentoo News

Last week's GWN…

…got lost due to the Whitsun holiday and an illness of the GWN Editor
Ulrich Plate[1]. This week's GWN is a kind of 'emergency issue' published
by long-time GWN-authors and -contributors. We are glad that we could
collect enough articles to present you a well-stuffed GWN that fits for
two weeks!

1. plate [at] gentoo

Gentoo Foundation's Trustees Election for 2005-2006

The first election of the 13 Gentoo Foundation's Trustees[2] by the
Developers have gone off well! With the help of Aron Griffis[3] votify and
countify scripts, the developers who are active for at least one year had
the possibly to vote their favourite candidates[4]. About 45% of the
nearly 200 Foundation members took the chance for voting. The mathematical
election method the Gentoo Foundation uses is called the Condorcet

2. http://www.gentoo.org/foundation/en/#doc_chap4
3. agriffis [at] gentoo
4. http://dev.gentoo.org/~slarti/misc/nominees.html
5. http://electionmethods.org/CondorcetEx.htm

The developers didn't had to wait long for the official trustees 2005
election result[6] published by the election officals Aron Griffis, Mike
Frysinger and Tom Martin:

6. http://article.gmane.org/gmane.linux.gentoo.nfp/252

* Grant Goodyear[7]
* Seemant Kulleen[8]
* Corey Shields[9]
* Donnie Berkholz[10]
* Lance Albertson[11]
* Sven Vermeulen[12]
* Deedra M. Waters[13]
* Kurt Lieber[14]
* Nicholas Jones[15]
* Lars Weiler[16]
* Daniel Ostrow[17]
* Jason Huebel[18]
* Joshua Kinard[19]
7. g2boojum [at] gentoo
8. seemant [at] gentoo
9. cshields [at] gentoo
10. spyderous [at] gentoo
11. ramereth [at] gentoo
12. swift [at] gentoo
13. dmwaters [at] gentoo
14. klieber [at] gentoo
15. carpaski [at] gentoo
16. pylon [at] gentoo
17. dostrow [at] gentoo
18. jhuebel [at] gentoo
19. kumba [at] gentoo

With the results given, Gentoo developer Ciaran McCreesh created nice
popularity charts[20] for all nominees.


Congratulations to the newly-elected Trustees!

New mailing list: gentoo-perl

A new mailing list has been set up: gentoo-perl [at] gentoo, for discussing
Perl in Gentoo, enhancements, g-cpan, etc.

How to subscribe and other mailing-lists information are available at

21. http://www.gentoo.org/main/en/lists.xml

2. User stories

Gentoo at Open Source Development Labs (OSDL)

The GWN-team received a story from Leann Ogasawara and other members of
the Open Source Development Labs (OSDL)[22], of how Gentoo is used at the
laboratory. We would like to present you the full story in this week's

22. http://www.osdl.org/

“OSDL is utilizing Gentoo for various projects here at the lab. One such
project is the BRT (Binary Regression Testing) project. The purpose of the
BRT project is to execute suites of regression tests focused towards
specific application binaries on a specific set of software packages. The
goal is to make it easier for application developers to run regression
tests on the latest open source software stack and to capture the results.
The need to build a customizable set of software packages from the bottom
up is what initially drew our interest towards Gentoo, and more
specifically, the Portage package management tool. We needed a tool that
would not only automate a package's build and installation process, but
also be in sync with the latest package release as well as older versions.
The tool also needed to be able to track build dependencies for a package
and handle their installations smoothly. The only additional functionality
we would maybe like to see in Portage is the ability to automatically
remove a package's build dependencies but keep the run time dependencies
installed (an ebuild DEPENDS vs RDEPENDS thing). That way our test system
would only have the absolute necessary set of packages that we want
installed and the extraneous packages wouldn't have a chance to possibly
interfere with our tests we want to run. Other than that, we've been very
pleased with the Portage tool and Gentoo in general. Since we first
started playing with Gentoo and researching what it could provide for us,
we've been using it on a daily basis and it has played an integral role in
the development of our project. Other developers at OSDL have also started
using Gentoo in their day to day tasks and often prefer to use it as their
test platform of choice.”

Thanks for this nice story!

3. Developer of the week

"An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind" (Ghandi)

Figure 3.1: Tom Martin aka slarti

This week's dev-of-the week is Tom Martin, better known as Slarti. He is
an AMD64 keyworder, maintainer of some net-mail packages, part of the
shell-tools herd and recruiter. His next "big thing" will be testing Mono
on AMD64 with the help of the Mono maintainer Peter "latexer" Johanson. As
with many Gentoo devs, Gentoo is his first OSS project and also the
software project he's most proud of (to be more precise, his work on
mailer-config and the UTF-8 guide[23]). He also enjoys recruiting new
developers and seeing that they do “the Right Thing”™.

23. http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/utf-8.xml

Although he appears to be more, he is still at school in Guernsey, Channel
Islands, where he'll soon have his final GCSE exams. Guernsey is a small
island with about 65000 permanent residents and about 24 square miles

His favourite programs are a wild mix: “Zsh is about the coolest thing
I've ever seen. I think imagemagick, LaTeX, rubber, mpd and t-prot are all
very useful programs, too.” Those usually run within Openbox, accompanied
by mutt, vim, irssi and their helper programs. Of course, they all run on
a self-built AMD64 box, accompanied by a newly bought Sun Ultra 2. For
programming usually Ruby is (ab-)used (since it has a “great concept of
OOP”), running within rxvt-unicode.

When not glued to a computer he enjoys playing rugby and guitar, but also
listening to diverse kinds of music. If you wish to find even more
information, check slarti's developer webspace[24].

24. http://dev.gentoo.org/~slarti/

“‘Gentoo is all about choice!’ Haha. No, really, I think Gentoo is not all
about choice, it's all about flexibility. You can make it work for you.”

4. Heard in the community

Web forums

Gentoo mentioned in books

Forums user radulucian[25] reported that he found Gentoo mentioned in
about 27 published books and posted what one of them had to say about
Gentoo. The review in "Linux Transfer for Windows Power Users: Getting
Started with Linux for the Desktop" seems to be quite fair, pointing out
the big community behind Gentoo, but that it might not be the best choice
for new Linux users. Gentoo is among the six most important distributions
of the author.

25. http://forums.gentoo.org/profile.php?mode=viewprofile&u=40001

* Gentoo mentioned in various books, 27 found so far[26]
26. http://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic-t-338900.html

Gentoo Foundation Website Redesign Contest

Forums Moderator M Curtis Napier (curtis119)[27] posted some current
screenshots from his work on the Website Redesign. If you want to catch a
glimpse at how the Gentoo-Website will look like in the future, you should
read this posting.

27. http://forums.gentoo.org/profile.php?mode=viewprofile&u=16020

* Gentoo Foundation Website Redesign Contest -- the vote[28]
28. http://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic-p-2421342.html#2421342


elibtoolize failures

If an emerge fails on you with "Portage patch failed to apply (ltmain.sh
version 1.3.4)!" or similar, you might have hit a known bug. Please don't
panic, it'll be fixed soon, as Mike Frysinger[29] tells us.

29. vapier [at] gentoo

* elibtoolize failures[30]
30. http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.linux.gentoo.devel/27955

bugs.gentoo.org upgraded

Jeffrey Forman[31] of Gentoo's infrastructure team upgraded our bugzilla
on [32]. The new features are listed in his e-mail.

31. jforman [at] gentoo
32. http://bugs.gentoo.org/

* UPGRADE complete bugs.gentoo.org[33]
33. http://article.gmane.org/gmane.linux.gentoo.devel/28044

New category proposal

What started as a proposal for a "cellphone" category for all applications
that help with mobile phones drifted away into a discussion whether portage
should support multiple categories per ebuild.

* New category proposal [34]
34. http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.linux.gentoo.devel/27893

New profuse version available

Our libconf and profuse hacker Damien Krotkine[35] has released a new
version of profuse, a Use-flag editor and possible ufed replacement.

35. dams [at] gentoo

* New profuse version available [36]
36. http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.linux.gentoo.devel/27972

death to underquoted M4 definitions

Aaron Walker[37] writes: “I'd like to propose a new function for
eutils.eclass that fixes m4 files so that aclocal doesn't produce those
annoying underquoted definition warnings when invoked.” That should reduce
the amount of (harmless) warnings which happen quite a lot.

37. ka0ttic [at] gentoo

* death to underquoted M4 definitions[38]
38. http://thread.gmane.org/gmane.linux.gentoo.devel/28113

5. Gentoo International

Austria: Grazer Linuxtage was a success

Thanks to the organisation team of the Grazer Linuxtage[39] the event at
Saturday 14th May was a success. It was not only a chance to tell people
about Gentoo and give away flyers and LiveCDs, but also to get to know
each other.

39. http://linuxtage.at/

Figure 5.1: Left: Gentoo folks, right: Gentoo, Debian and Grml teams

In the left picture some of the Gentoo folks who mostly had not ever seen
each other in real life are shown: Gregor Perner, forums admin Wernfried
Haas (amne), Gregor's brother Philip, Gentoo developer Roger Miliker
(roger55), forums user nephros and Markus Lang. In the right picture you
see the Gentoo team meet other distributions teams: Debian[40] and
grml[41]. Once the Linuxtag was over most of them also joined a social
event which was a nice completion of the day.

40. http://www.debian.org/
41. http://www.grml.org/

Note: Pictures taken from the Grazer Linuxtage gallery.

6. Gentoo in the press

MyOSS (May 2005)

Ow Mun Heng from Kuala Lumpur has published the first issue of his brand
new "Malaysian OSS Magazine"[42], a monthly publication. The inaugural
number contains an article on swsuspend2, the power management application
for notebook Linux users, based on the editor's distribution of choice,
Gentoo Linux.


Emediawire (11 May 2005)

Remember the Kuro-Box[43] we covered in our Future zone a few months ago?
Well, a small company based in Illinois called Sumo Computer[44] seems to
have liked the idea so much they transformed it into something marketable:
A press release issued last week announces a Kuro-Box equipped with an
extra 250GB Maxtor disk and Gentoo Linux pre-installed, now shipping to
customers interested in a "more user friendly, ready to go system" that
will set them back 549 USD. Sumo Computer's Melody Bornheimer says they
chose Gentoo Linux because of “its ease of administration, and over 9,000
ported open-source applications.”

43. 20050221-newsletter.xml#doc_chap2
44. http://www.sumocomputer.com/

Distrowatch (9 May 2005)

Everybody's favorite website for Linux distribution news and information,
Ladislav Bodnar's Distrowatch[45], also carries a highly informative
newsletter published each week on the same day as the GWN. Last Monday,
the Distrowatch newsletter opened with a mini-review of Gentoo Linx
2005.0[46], written by Robert Storey and recounting his experiences during
a first-time Gentoo Linux installation. “Not for aunt Tilly,” but
otherwise quite positive…

45. http://distrowatch.com
46. http://distrowatch.com/weekly.php?issue=20050509#1

7. Moves, adds, and changes


The following developers recently left the Gentoo team:

* John Davis (zhen)


The following developers recently joined the Gentoo Linux team:

* Benjamin Smee (strerror) (net-mail)
* Daniel Gryniewicz (dang) (amd64)
* René Nussbaumer (Killerfox) (hppa)


The following developers recently changed roles within the Gentoo Linux

* Brian Jackson (iggy) - left the devrel team

8. Gentoo security

gzip: Multiple vulnerabilities

gzip contains multiple vulnerabilities potentially allowing an attacker to
execute arbitrary commands.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[47]

47. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-05.xml

TCPDump: Decoding routines Denial of Service vulnerability

A flaw in the decoding of network packets renders TCPDump vulnerable to a
remote Denial of Service attack.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[48]

48. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-06.xml

libTIFF: Buffer overflow

The libTIFF library is vulnerable to a buffer overflow, potentially
resulting in the execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[49]

49. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-07.xml

HT Editor: Multiple buffer overflows

Two vulnerabilities have been discovered in HT Editor, potentially leading
to the execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[50]

50. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-08.xml

Gaim: Denial of Service and buffer overflow vulnerabilties

Gaim contains two vulnerabilities, potentially resulting in the execution
of arbitrary code or Denial of Service.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[51]

51. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-09.xml

phpBB: Cross-Site Scripting Vulnerability

phpBB is vulnerable to a cross-site scripting attack that could allow
arbitrary scripting code execution.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[52]

52. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-10.xml

Mozilla Suite, Mozilla Firefox: Remote compromise

Several vulnerabilities in the Mozilla Suite and Firefox allow an attacker
to conduct cross-site scripting attacks or to execute arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[53]

53. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-11.xml

PostgreSQL: Multiple vulnerabilities

PostgreSQL is vulnerable to Denial of Service attacks and possibly allows
unprivileged users to gain administrator rights.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[54]

54. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-12.xml

FreeRADIUS: SQL injection and Denial of Service vulnerability

The FreeRADIUS server is vulnerable to an SQL injection attack and a
buffer overflow, possibly resulting in disclosure and modification of data
and Denial of Service.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[55]

55. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-13.xml

Cheetah: Untrusted module search path

Cheetah contains a vulnerability in the module importing code that can
allow a local user to gain escalated privileges.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[56]

56. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-14.xml

gdb: Multiple vulnerabilities

Multiple vulnerabilities have been discovered in the GNU debugger,
potentially allowing the execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[57]

57. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-15.xml

ImageMagick, GraphicsMagick: Denial of Service vulnerability

ImageMagick and GraphicsMagick utilities can be abused to perform a Denial
of Service attack.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[58]

58. http://www.gentoo.org/security/en/glsa/glsa-200505-16.xml

9. Bugzilla


* Statistics
* Closed bug ranking
* New bug rankings


The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla (bugs.gentoo.org[59]) to record and
track bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the
development team. Between 08 May 2005 and 22 May 2005, activity on the
site has resulted in:

59. http://bugs.gentoo.org

* 1650 new bugs during this period
* 987 bugs closed or resolved during this period
* 48 previously closed bugs were reopened this period

Of the 8469 currently open bugs: 89 are labeled 'blocker', 221 are labeled
'critical', and 621 are labeled 'major'.

Closed bug rankings

The developers and teams who have closed the most bugs during this period

* AMD64 Porting Team[60], with 65 closed bugs[61]
* Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[62], with 43 closed bugs[63]
* Gentoo Security[64], with 38 closed bugs[65]
* Gentoo KDE team[66], with 35 closed bugs[67]
* Gentoo Linux Gnome Desktop Team[68], with 33 closed bugs[69]
* Gentoo Games[70], with 33 closed bugs[71]
* Perl Devs @ Gentoo[72], with 31 closed bugs[73]
* Jeffrey Forman[74], with 28 closed bugs[75]
60. amd64 [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=amd64 [at] gentoo
62. base-system [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=base-system [at] gentoo
64. security [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=security [at] gentoo
66. kde [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=kde [at] gentoo
68. gnome [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=gnome [at] gentoo
70. games [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=games [at] gentoo
72. perl [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=perl [at] gentoo
74. jforman [at] gentoo
ED&assigned_to=jforman [at] gentoo

New bug rankings

The developers and teams who have been assigned the most new bugs during
this period are:

* Gentoo Linux Gnome Desktop Team[76], with 37 new bugs[77]
* Gentoo Sound Team[78], with 27 new bugs[79]
* media-video herd[80], with 16 new bugs[81]
* Gentoo Kernel Bug Wranglers and Kernel Maintainers[82], with 16 new
* Gentoo Toolchain Maintainers[84], with 14 new bugs[85]
* Sergey Kuleshov[86], with 14 new bugs[87]
* media-gfx herd[88], with 14 new bugs[89]
* Gentoo KDE team[90], with 13 new bugs[91]
76. gnome [at] gentoo
-22&assigned_to=gnome [at] gentoo
78. sound [at] gentoo
-22&assigned_to=sound [at] gentoo
80. media-video [at] gentoo
-22&assigned_to=media-video [at] gentoo
82. kernel [at] gentoo
-22&assigned_to=kernel [at] gentoo
84. toolchain [at] gentoo
-22&assigned_to=toolchain [at] gentoo
86. svyatogor [at] gentoo
-22&assigned_to=svyatogor [at] gentoo
88. graphics [at] gentoo
d_to&chfieldfrom=2005-05-08&chfieldto=2005-05-22&assigned_to=graphics [at] gent
90. kde [at] gentoo
-22&assigned_to=kde [at] gentoo

10. GWN feedback

Please send us your feedback[92] and help make the GWN better.

92. gwn-feedback [at] gentoo

11. GWN subscription information

To subscribe to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter, send a blank email to
gentoo-gwn+subscribe [at] gentoo

To unsubscribe to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter, send a blank email to
gentoo-gwn+unsubscribe [at] gentoo from the email address you are
subscribed under.

12. Other languages

The Gentoo Weekly Newsletter is also available in the following languages:

* Danish[93]
* Dutch[94]
* English[95]
* German[96]
* French[97]
* Japanese[98]
* Italian[99]
* Polish[100]
* Portuguese (Brazil)[101]
* Portuguese (Portugal)[102]
* Russian[103]
* Spanish[104]
* Turkish[105]
93. http://www.gentoo.org/news/da/gwn/gwn.xml
94. http://www.gentoo.org/news/nl/gwn/gwn.xml
95. http://www.gentoo.org/news/en/gwn/gwn.xml
96. http://www.gentoo.org/news/de/gwn/gwn.xml
97. http://www.gentoo.org/news/fr/gwn/gwn.xml
98. http://www.gentoo.org/news/ja/gwn/gwn.xml
99. http://www.gentoo.org/news/it/gwn/gwn.xml
100. http://www.gentoo.org/news/pl/gwn/gwn.xml
101. http://www.gentoo.org/news/pt_br/gwn/gwn.xml
102. http://www.gentoo.org/news/pt/gwn/gwn.xml
103. http://www.gentoo.org/news/ru/gwn/gwn.xml
104. http://www.gentoo.org/news/es/gwn/gwn.xml
105. http://www.gentoo.org/news/tr/gwn/gwn.xml

“German Conspiracy” <conspiracy [at] gentoo> - Editor
Ulrich Plate <plate [at] gentoo> - Author
Patrick Lauer <patrick [at] gentoo> - Author
Tobias Scherbaum <dertobi123 [at] gentoo> - Author
Wernfried Haas <w.haas [at] xover> - Author
Lars Weiler <pylon [at] gentoo> - Author

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