Petter Reinholdtsen

Entries from July 2024.

More than 200 orphaned Debian packages moved to git, 216 to go
11th July 2024

In April, I started migrating orphaned Debian packages without any version control system listed in debian/control to git. This morning, my Debian QA page finally reached 200 QA packages migrated. In reality there are a few more, as the packages uploaded by someone else after my initial upload have disappeared from my QA uploads list. As I am running out of steam and will most likely focus on other parts of Debian moving forward, I hope someone else will find time to continue the migration to bring the number of orphaned packages without any version control system down to zero. Here is the updated recipe if someone want to help out.

To locate packages to work on, the following one-liner can be used:

PGPASSWORD="udd-mirror" psql --port=5432 \
  --username=udd-mirror udd -c "select source from sources \
   where release = 'sid' and (vcs_url ilike '' \
   OR vcs_browser ilike '' or vcs_url IS NULL \
   OR vcs_browser IS NULL) AND maintainer ilike '' \
   order by random() limit 10;"

Pick a random package from the list and run the latest edition of the script debian-snap-to-salsa with the package name as the argument to prepare a git repository with the existing packaging. This will download old Debian packages from Note that very recent uploads will not be included, so check out the package on Next, run gbp buildpackage --git-ignore-new to verify that the package build as it should, and then visit and make sure there is not already a git repository for the package there. I also did git log -p debian/control and look for vcs entries to check if the package used to have a git repository on Alioth, and see if it can be a useful starting point moving forward. If all this check out, I created a new gitlab project below the Debian group on salsa, push the package source there and upload a new version. I tend to also ensure build hardening is enabled, if it prove to be easy, and check if I can easily fix any lintian issues or bug reports. If the process took more than 20 minutes, I dropped it and moved on to another package.

If I found patches in debian/patches/ that were not yet passed upstream, I would send an email to make sure upstream know about them. This has proved to be a valuable step, and caused several new releases for software that initially appeared abandoned. :)

As usual, if you use Bitcoin and want to show your support of my activities, please send Bitcoin donations to my address 15oWEoG9dUPovwmUL9KWAnYRtNJEkP1u1b.

Tags: debian, english.
Some notes from the 2024 LinuxCNC Norwegian developer gathering
10th July 2024

The Norwegian The LinuxCNC developer gathering 2024 is over. It was a great and productive weekend, and I am sad that it is over.

Regular readers probably still remember what LinuxCNC is, but her is a quick summary for those that forgot? LinuxCNC is a free software system for numerical control of machines such as milling machines, lathes, plasma cutters, routers, cutting machines, robots and hexapods. It eats G-code and produce motor movement and other changes to the physical world, while reading sensor input.

I am not quite sure about the total head count, as not all people were present at the gathering the entire weekend, but I believe it was close to 10 people showing their faces at the gathering. The "hard core" of the group, who stayed the entire weekend, were two from Norway, two from Germany and one from England. I am happy with the outcome from the gathering. We managed to wrap up a new stable LinuxCNC release 2.9.3 and even tested it on real hardware within minutes of the release. The release notes for 2.9.3 are still being written, but should show up on on the project site in the next few days. We managed to go through around twenty pull requests and merge then into either the stable release (2.9) or the development branch (master). There are still around thirty pull requests left to process, so we are not out of work yet. We even managed to fix/improve a slightly worn lathe, and experiment with running a mechanical clock using G-code.

The evening barbeque worked well both on Saturday and Sunday. It is quite fun to light up a charcoal grill using compressed air. Sadly the weather was not the best, so we stayed indoors most of the time.

This gathering was made possible partly with sponsoring from both Redpill Linpro, Debian and NUUG Foundation, and we are most grateful for the support. I would also like to thank the local school for lending us some furniture, and of course the rest of the members of the organizers team, Asle and Bosse, for their countless contributions. The gathering was such success that we want to do it again next year.

We plan to organize the next Norwegian LinuxCNC developer gathering at the end of June next year, the weekend Friday 27th to Sunday 29th of June 2025. I recommend you reserve the dates on your calendar today. Other related communities are also welcome to join in, for example those working on systems like FreeCAD and opencamlib, as I am sure we have much in common and sharing experiences would be very useful to all involved. We are of course looking for sponsors for this gathering already. The total budget for this gathering was around NOK 25.000 (around EUR 2.300), so our needs are quite modest. Perhaps a machine or tools company would like to help out the free software manufacturing community by sponsoring food, lodging and transport for such gathering?

Tags: debian, english, linuxcnc.

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