Fedora Weekly News Issue 175
Welcome to Fedora Weekly News Issue 175 for the week ending May 10th, 2009.
In a small sample of this information-packed issue Announcements points to the "Fedora 11 Bug Blocker Review Day", PlanetFedora explores the relationship between cooking popcorn and releasing software, Ambassadors reports that Fedora is a star not only in Trenton,NJ but also in Jaipur,India. QualityAssurance covers the proposal to drop the production of Alpha releases by Fedora 12 and the "Fedora Bug Workflow". Developments quivers with "Presto A-Go-Go!" Translation takes a look at the "Long Release Notes". Artwork examines "Banners, Posters and T-shirts". The WebComic crowns Leonidas. SecurityAdvisories is short and sweet. Virtualization reports on "Experimental Dom0 on Fedora 11".
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In this section, we cover announcements from the Fedora Project.
Contributing Writer: Max Spevack
Fedora 11 Bug Blocker Review Day
Release Engineering is holding a blocker bug review day. The purpose of the meeting is to review the status of all bugs on the Fedora 11 blocker list, and determine the current prospects for Fedora 11's final release.
The meeting will take place in #fedora-bugzappers at 1400 UTC on Monday, May 11.
FUDCons and FADs
This section previews upcoming Fedora Users & Developers Conferences, as well as upcoming Fedora Activity Days.
Fedora Activity Day Malaysia
Planning is underway for a Fedora Activity Day in Malaysia at the end of May, contingent upon gathering together sufficient Fedora contributors to make such an event worthwhile. If you are in the area and are interested in attending or have some ideas on projects that could be worked on, see the wiki page for more information.
FUDCon Porto Alegre 2009
FUDCon Porto Alegre will take place June 24-27 in Brazil. About 30 people have signed up so far, and we're hopeful for an attendance of over 100.
If you would like more information, and to sign up, please visit the wiki page.
FUDCon Berlin 2009
FUDCon Berlin will be held from June 26-28, and we're getting close to crossing the 100-person-preregistered mark.
Consider attending or volunteering at an event near you!
May 15: Fedora Venezuela Anniversary in Caracas, Venezuela.
May 15-16: VCNSL in Caracas, Venezuela.
May 22-23: eLiberatica in Bucharest, Romania.
May 29-30: III ENSL e IV FSLBA in Salvador, Brazil.
In this section, we cover the highlights of Planet Fedora - an aggregation of blogs from Fedora contributors worldwide.
Contributing Writer: Adam Batkin
Silas Sewell described how
Puppet can be used to manage large networks. "Puppet is an open source configuration management tool written in Ruby. It allows a systems administrator to define how a system should be configured using Puppet’s declarative language. Each Puppet client pulls its catalog at a regular interval and figures out how to make the catalog definitions true for the local operating system."
Silas also packaged
Scribe, "a server for aggregating log data streamed in real time from a large number of servers" (written by Facebook).
Adam Williamson updated the Fedora Bug Process wiki page. "One significant thing it formalizes was discussed at the QA meeting this morning: what happens when a Rawhide bug gets fixed." Adam also "re-arranged it in a more logical order, wikified it, and added a lot more detail on bits of the process, states, and resolutions that weren’t previously covered. It also now explicitly mentions which resolutions and states are valid for Fedora and which aren’t."
Jeremy Katz followed-up from his previous post (mentioned in FWN Issue 174) on the relevance of PPC as a primary Fedora architecture. At this week's Fedora Board meeting, "the Board voted and decided that from the Board level, PPC is no longer required to be a primary arch." Jeremy added "That does not mean that PPC is now automatically a secondary arch... The next step is that I am proposing to FESCo that they consider a proposal to have PPC become a secondary arch for Fedora 12."
In this section, we cover Fedora Ambassadors Project.
Contributing Writer: Larry Cafiero
Fedora Stars in Trenton
Kam Salisbury reports that the Trenton Computer Festival (TCF) held in New Jersey USA was a moderate sucess from the Fedora Ambassador activity perspective.
Held every April, TCF brings together electronics enthusiasts of all types. On April 25-26, TCF allowed Fedora to be represented with the Philadelphia Linux Users Group -- PLUG -- and the New Jersey Linux Users Group -- NJLUG . Well over 100 people stopped by the exposition tables to inquire about Fedora or Linux in general.
Fedora at FOSS-nigma Workshop
Anirudh Singh Shekhawat reports on FOSS-nigma, the first-ever Linux Users Group Jaipur workshop, which was held at Kautilya Institute of Technology in India on April 26. Among the activities at FOSS-nigma were a FOSS talk session and a Fedora installfest, specifically:
- Introduction to FOSS by Varad Gupta, the first RHCSS in India, an active contributor to the community who also runs a linux training academy in Delhi called Fostering Linux.
- Fedora Project by Anirudh Singh Shekhawat, Fedora ambassador and third-year student. Anirudh talked about installation and ease of use on desktops. Anirudh also touched on people getting involved in the community and help them give ways to contribute back to the community.
On the Fedora Install fest, 100 Fedora CDs and DVDs were made available and a demonstration using a projector was performed, showing the ease of installation of Fedora 10. Thanks go out to Mr. Rahul Sundaram and to Mr. Susmit who graciously sent us the media.
Fedora 11 release events
With the upcoming release of Fedora 11, posting your event on Fedora Weekly News can help get the word out. Contact FWN Ambassador correspondent Larry Cafiero at lcafiero-AT-fedoraproject-DOT-org with announcements of upcoming events (and don't forget to e-mail reports after the events as well).
In this section, we cover the activities of the QA team.
Contributing Writer: Adam Williamson
This week's Test Day was on virtualization, particularly the virtualization technologies most associated with Fedora - KVM, qemu, libvirt and virt-manager. We had a great turnout of developers and testers and managed to cover a lot of ground, and over 25 new bugs were discovered and reported.
Next week's Test Day will be on iBus, the new default input framework for Asian languages for Fedora 11. If you use Fedora in one of these languages - for instance, Chinese, Japanese or Korean - you'll want to come out to this test day, as this is a significant change and we need to make sure it's working in all situations, and fix any bugs if it's not. The Test Day will be held on 2009-05-14 (Thursday) in IRC #fedora-qa.
Will Woods reported on several Fedora 10 to Fedora 11 upgrade bugs he has been tracking, and noted that he needs to write some more upgrade test cases to cover areas where bugs are consistently being found.
James Laska reported that he had not had time to work with David Zeuthen and Lennart Poettering on false positives in the hard disk failure detection system, but Will Woods noted that relevant bugs had been filed by others and the issue is definitely on the active radar for the developers.
Will Woods, James Laska and Adam Williamson reported steady progress on reviewing blocker bugs for SELinux, anaconda and X.org for Fedora 11 respectively, and the discussion then turned into a debate about the process for resolving Rawhide bugs in Bugzilla. The group agreed that the maintainer should be allowed to choose whether to close a bug immediately after checking in a fix for the reported issue, or whether to set the status to MODIFIED and wait for confirmation from the reporter that the bug is truly fixed before closing.
Jesse Keating reported on progress in the autoqa project. He has been working on a conflict finder test, and the autoqa team has been discussing directions for future development.
Adam Williamson reported on the volume control application debate. His package of the old gnome-volume-control under the name gst-mixer has been accepted into the Fedora 11 repositories and added to the default package groups so that it will be installed by default in the DVD package selection and on the desktop spin for Fedora 11 release. The 'pavucontrol' mixer for PulseAudio has been removed, so Fedora 11's desktop spin and default DVD installation package set will include two graphical mixers, the new gnome-volume-control and gst-mixer. These between them cover all major use cases.
Jóhann Guðmundsson raised the issue of Jesse Keating's proposal to drop the Alpha release for the Fedora 12 cycle. James Laska worried that it might cause trouble for Fedora 12 Test Days. Jóhann pointed out that live CDs are now habitually generated for each Test Day, but James worried about what would happen if it proved impossible to generate a live CD for a week. Jesse explained that as far as he saw it, the main value of Alpha was to be a known-good point to bootstrap a Rawhide installation, and it often fails at that. He suggested that for Fedora 12, Fedora 11 release could serve as the known-good point to bootstrap a Rawhide installation.
The Bugzappers group weekly meeting was held on 2009-05-05. The full log is available. Adam Williamson reported on progress with the triage metrics project: members of the Fedora Python development group had volunteered and helped port the code to Python 2.4 (as is required before it can run on Infrastructure's servers), but wanted some test data to confirm that their fixes are valid. Adam will try to ensure Brennan provides the necessary test data, and then the application can likely go live.
Adam also reported on the status of the Bugzilla priority/severity proposal. The group agreed that his final draft of the proposed email to the development group was good. Adam suggested that it would be a good idea for another group member to actually send the proposal, and Matej Cepl volunteered to do it.
Edward Kirk reported on the progress of the SOP to cover accepting new members into the Bugzappers group. The group decided to put the SOP into place on the Wiki and work on any further changes 'live'. Edward agreed to take care of publishing the SOP with appropriate links.
The group then voted unanimously to adjourn the meeting and go eat cookies.
The next QA weekly meeting will be held on 2009-05-13 at 1600 UTC in #fedora-meeting, and the next Bugzappers weekly meeting on 2009-05-12 at 1500 UTC in #fedora-meeting.
Fedora Bug Workflow
Adam Williamson announced that he had extensively revised the Fedora bug workflow page to more extensively cover all the available statuses and resolutions, and all the common processes through which most bug reports go. Niels Haase pointed out that the NEXTRELEASE resolution, which Adam had described in the page as not used for Fedora, is actually used by the automated Bodhi scripts when resolving a bug for which an official update has been issued. Adam followed up this issue, and reported that his discussions indicated his interpretation - that bugs fixed in stable releases should be closed as ERRATA - is likely correct, and the Bodhi scripts should be adjusted.
Bugzappers new member SOP
Edward Kirk reported that he had put the new member SOP for the Bugzappers group live on the Wiki, as agreed at the weekly meeting. Christopher Beland suggested that the language used was very formal, and some areas might be a little vague. Adam Williamson promised to try and find time to revise the page a little.
In this section the people, personalities and debates on the @fedora-devel mailing list are summarized.
Contributing Writer: Oisin Feeley
Presto A-Go-Go !
Paul W. Frields described the potential saved download bandwidth as "[t]ypically [...] in double digits, but I’ve heard of cases already (using our development branch Rawhide) where people were saving 90% or more of their download time."
PPC as a Secondary Architecture
The 2009-05-07 FESCo summary reported that there is interest in moving PowerPC to secondary architecture status. David Woodhouse suggested that it would be interesting to hear from existing secondary architecture teams on the problems they had experienced. To date there are no secondary architectures ready to ship in Fedora.
Jesse Keating asked: "How is it we have 182 stable updates pending for F11 already? How have these seen any testing by a wider audience? Are we really just not bothering with updates-testing anymore? Do we not care about distro stability?" An interesting thread discussed the ways in which developer workflow and the availability of updates for testing can be re-aligned to each other. Among the complications discussed were the need to provide a way to upgrade for a previous release and the coupling of DVD image preparation with a release.
Till Maas replied that updates-testing requests for
Fedora 11 had apparently not been processed and Kevin Kofler argued that the chances were high that packages which built succesfully on an earlier release would build on a later one. This was disputed by Jesse Keating. David Cantrell and Seth Vidal shared their experience of users not responding to requests to test and comment on updates provided in
A debate over the problems caused between the mismatch between the rolling, continuous nature of development and the need to freeze packages in a known state to produce a release received substantial contributions from Ralf Corsepius, who argued that Release-Engineering should change the workflow considerably. Jesse Keating responded with a defense of the current system which emphasized the need of maintainers to adhere to the current workflow and "good development practices."
There's a lot more in this thread beyond the ability of your correspondent to summarize adequately. It's worth a read for anyone trying to understand how and why Fedora is produced.
Dan Winship confirmed that for the present
NSS was best used directly with applications rather than by other libraries. Robert Relyea provided a detailed response to Adam including the hopeful sounding news that some of the issues around
NSS_Init may be fixed in a few months.
Intel Moblin Pushing Proprietary Poulsbo ?
Last week's thread about the significant amount of Fedora-originating code being rolled into Intel's
Moblin2 platform without much kudos or thanks continued. Questions were asked about why Intel was not providing code for the
Poulsbo graphics chipset (common in many netbooks) except via obscure repositories. The appearance of ex-Red Hatter Arjan van de Ven, who argued in defense of binary blobs in these drivers, occasioned some wry commentary.
When Adam Williamson pointed to a "huge new pile of crack [...] in the Ubuntu Mobile special-sauce repositories [...]" Dan Williams asked: "What makes the Poulsbo team so special that they are exempt from the upstreaming policy that every other part of Intel seems to follow so well these days?" Later discussion suggested that it ought to at least be possible to produce a "[...] basic native accelerated 2D driver which doesn't depend on all the horrible proprietary crack [.]"
This section covers the news surrounding the Fedora Translation (L10n) Project.
Contributing Writer: Runa Bhattacharjee
FLP Meeting Held on 5th May 2009
The FLP Meeting, chaired by FLSCo member NorikoMizumoto was held on 5th May 2009. The important issues discussed include the frequency of the FLP meeting, problems surrounding the F11 Release Notes, determining probable package exceptions to the string freeze policy and the Installation Guide colophon.
Further to the earlier discussion, NorikoMizumoto put forward a suggestion to segregate the Colophon section of the Installation Guide as a writeable file, which could be modified by the translation team members and the names of the translators could be added within respective language sections. Ruedigar Landmann the maintainer of the Fedora Installation Guide concurrs with the idea of segregating the file, however he expresses concern about the earlier suggestion to restrict the translator credits for a particular language within the respective language documentation as this approach would lead to non-recognition of valuable contributions in other languages. In response to PaulFrields call to make the process more scaleable, he also mentions that the current documentation and translation process results in acknowledgment of new translators late by one build of the document.
Long Release Notes
NorikoMizumoto and Xavier Conde have raised concerns about the feasibility of translating the extremely lengthy Fedora Release Notes. Although suggestions about dividing the bulky file into manageable chunks have been put forward, the main concern still remains about the target audience for the document and the content covered. A similar discussion had taken place earlier and as a result the Fedora Documentation team has also taken up this matter for consideration for Fedora 12.
Installation Guide screenshot
In a discussion in the Fedora-Documentation and Fedora-Translation mailing lists, about the many screenshots in the Fedora Installation Guide, Ruedigar Landmann mentions that due to the complexity in acquiring the screenshots during the installation process, all the relevant screenshots for each language have been captured by him and have been used in the localized versions of the document.
News and Media Coverage Plan
As part of the Fedora 11 News and Media Coverage plan, Steven Moix has announced the plan to translate the Fedora 11 Release Announcement in a few prominent languages - German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, Hindi, Italian and Arabic. This would be coordinated by the Fedora Documentation and Translation teams.
New Members/Co-ordinators in FLP
In this section, we cover the Fedora Artwork Project.
Contributing Writer: Nicu Buculei
Banners, Posters, T-shirts
Maria Leandro posted on @fedora-art a banner idea for FUDcon LATAM "I was working on some ideas for a banner that we want to use on fisl 9.0 ( FUDcon Latam ) but I know that I have some mistakes with the logo guidance and the tm background" which quickly received a round of improvements from Nicu Buculei and Martin Sourada helping Maria to reach a better version.
In reply, Jayme Ayres came with his own design "as we have several spaces in the event, Maria Leandro and I are thinking of doing some different gear" and Nicu, even if not from LATAM, felt motivated to try his own poster concept "It looks like you will have a lot of eye candy and make me feel bad for being lazy and not implementing a few ideas buried deep in a corner of my head".
In parallel with the posters "ping-pong", MolaPahnadayan proposed a lion themed T-shirt design. Later Ian Weller proposed  a "splatter" t-shirt design, for which Máirín Duffy tried her own variation "Here's some alternative ideas to get the same kind of look/feel without buzzing the logo so much."
From the T-shirt talk a question was raised about the proper way to write the fedoraproject.org website address on such materials and it was answered by Paul W. Frields "We do put 'join.fedoraproject.org' on our DVD/CD media, so we might want to remain consistent by using that URL. But I think leaving off 'http://'; is fine" and "I also think using 'fedoraproject.org' on its own would be fine."
Wallpaper with or without the Lion
Rodrigo Padula expressed his dissatisfaction with the lion graphic not being visible in the single screen of the wallpaper for Fedora 11 (editorial note: the lion is currently used as a kind of Easter-egg for people with dual-screen setups) and called for a different way of decision-making "My sugestion isn't to 'voting on every bug and issue that comes up', but voting on artwork options for every Fedora Release to take a direction (not a final decision), to have feedback from the people that spread and use Fedora around the world. [...] For me this decision impacts all users/contributors/ambassadors, but the decision isn't clear and isn't open!" while Máirín Duffy pointed to the specific mailing list threads where the issue was discussed and underlined the need of a decision making and its downsides "There is no way to satisfy everyone with the artwork. When one person is happy, there are 5 others who are upset about it."
Max Spevack defended Máirín's position "Mo has said it correctly. The purpose of Fedora is not to vote on all sorts of things. The purpose of Fedora is to provide a leadership model for individual teams to take ownership of tasks, and work those tasks to completion in an open, inclusive way. Discussing which of several options is 'most right' is perfectly fine, but in the end decisions are made by the people in the teams who are directly doing the work, or those who are active participants" and Nicu Buculei tried a compromise "here is my proposed solution, hope the schedule still allow it: include the right screen (the lion head) in the default package, so those wanting it don't have to download additional stuff, have only to click on 'Change Desktop Background' (as we had with the temple image)." Finally, Martin Sourada provided and the situation was defused.
Fedora Weekly Webcomic
In this section, we cover Security Advisories from fedora-package-announce.
Contributing Writer: David Nalley
Fedora 10 Security Advisories
Fedora 9 Security Advisories
In this section, we cover discussion of Fedora virtualization technologies on the @et-mgmnt-tools-list, @fedora-xen-list, and @libvirt-list lists.
Contributing Writer: Dale Bewley
Fedora Virtualization List
This section contains the discussion happening on the fedora-virt list.
Virtualization Test Day
Mark McLoughlin thought "we made heaps of progress today. To give you an idea of what went on today, see below for the list of bugs that were filed during the test day." See the post for a concise list of bugs revealed during testing.
Fedora virt status
Mark McLoughlin posted another informative Fedora virtualization status report. For those who live life beyond the bleeding edge, Mark points out "F12 tracker bugs have been created. The F12 blocker and target bugs depend on the F11 counterparts. The idea is that if we don't fix a bug in F11, it's automatically on the F12 tracker but we still have a list of bugs worth fixing in a post-GA F11 update."
Read the full post for more coverage of developments and useful bug summaries.
libguestfs on non-Fedora Platforms
some "personal hackery" created to solve the same problems as
but by way of a different toolchain. Charles wanted to build
libguestfs on his platform
but uncovered many bugs and asked, "is my goal reasonable, or am I better off sticking with my in-house solution for the time being?"
Richard Jones addressed several of the bugs and
his "notes on building libguestfs and dependencies on RHEL 5 and derived distributions" followed with a blow by blow account of hammering
libguestfs and its dependencies into submission. Finally, Richard announced RPMs for RHEL/CentOS 5.3.
Charles thanked him "kindly for going above and beyond on this one!".
Fedora Xen List
This section contains the discussion happening on the fedora-xen list.
Experimental Dom0 on Fedora 11
Pasi Kärkkäinen reports success with a dom0 kernel using Fedora 11 Rawhide. "I'm able to run Xen paravirtual (PV) domUs, install new domUs using virt-install and also install and manage domains with virt-manager."
The environment used was:
- Fedora 11 (rawhide as of 2009-05-05)
- Xen included in F11, no external patches (xen-3.3.1-11.fc11)
- xen-tip/next pv_ops dom0 kernel as of 2009-05-06, Linux 2.6.30-rc3.
- All the rest was standard stuff included in Fedora 11 as well