Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 6 November 2006

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Gentoo Weekly Newsletter 6 November 2006

Chris Gianelloni
Gentoo Weekly Newsletter
This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 6 November 2006.

1. Heard in the community


dual-boot with XP installed last

James writes to gentoo-user asking about the possibility of making his
Gentoo machine dual boot with Windows XP while having installed Gentoo
first. He was worried that, having installed Windows, it would overwrite the
MBR and thus render his Gentoo installation inaccessible. Gentoo users
responded by saying that doing it this way would be as simple as first
installing Windows, then booting into a Live CD, and reinstalling GRUB from
there. Mark Shields posted this summary of what to do when you're back in
the Live CD:

| Code Listing 1.1                                                          |
| Reinstalling GRUB from a LiveCD                                           |
| # mount /dev/rootpart /mnt/gentoo                                         |
| # mount /dev/bootpart /mnt/gentoo/boot                                    |
| # mount -t proc none /mnt/gentoo/proc                                     |
| # mount -o bind /dev /mnt/gentoo/dev                                      |
| # chroot /mnt/gentoo /bin/bash                                            |
| # env-update && source /etc/profile                                       |
| # grep -v rootfs /proc/mounts > /etc/mtab                                 |
| (Assuming your hard drive is /dev/hda)                                    |
| # grub-install /dev/hda                                                   |



Monthly Gentoo Council Reminder for November

A gentle reminder about an upcoming IRC meeting led to an interesting debate
about the nature of Gentoo and a lesson on how to deploy it in an enterprise

Steve Long proposed that Gentoo create a binary-only repository in a limited
series of flavors (SOHO, medium size and large business), using the binaries
that the devs compile in the course of their maintenance work. He felt this
was the best way to demonstrate Gentoo was serious about enterprise

Grant Goodyear countered that Steve underestimated the difficulties of, and
overestimated the devs' interest in maintaining, a binary repo. Instead,
Gentoo should build on its strengths as a meta-distribution to allow users
to build and deploy their own custom distributions using Catalyst.

Stuart Herbert pointed out that he and others would be happy to ease the way
for "flavored" enterprise adoption by providing binaries to the "Seeds"
effort and that a binary-only distribution was as prone to breakage as a
source-based one.

Robin Johnson pointed out that his compiles as a dev were of little use to
others, as there were too many aspects that were peculiar to his systems. He
also provided insights gleaned from his experiences using Gentoo in a
corporate environment. He noted that enterprises need customization at an
enterprise level, in that they may use LDAP or Kerberos or whatever
enterprise-wide. They also need standardized binaries to deploy within the
enterprise. His solution was to have one "tinderbox" machine to take care of
compilation and then push out the resulting binaries throughout the
enterprise. He accomplishes this using Catalyst and custom specfiles. The
largest deployment he's done using this plan consists of an impressive array
of machines.

  * cluster nodes [128 machines]
  * cluster master [1 machine]
  * web servers [~60 machines]
  * ldap servers [2 machines]
  * dedicated file serving (network homedirs) [4 machines]
  * infrastructure management [3 machines]
  * desktops [~60 machines]


Removal Request for Gnome 1.4

Doug Goldstein has proposed removal of the ancientand obselete Gnome 1.4,
and has started to list packages to be removed in bug 154102[1].



FEATURES to cut the excess in portage

John Jawed had been using Gentoo to create an initrd to be used in PXE boots
across the network. The size of the initrd was critical, since a large file
caused kernel panics. He slimmed down the initrd by removing all man and doc
pages. He then prepared a patch to portage to implement this.

Responders noted that the functionality was already present in

Christian Heim referred John to the "noman" and "nodoc" FEATURES flags,
Tobias Scherbaum to the "noinfo" FEATURE flag. Brian Jackson pointed out the
INSTALL_MASK flag which allows one prevent any of a space delimited list of
files to be copied into the filesystem, allowing one to filter out files
like HACKING.gz and TODO.gz


2. Gentoo International

Italy: Linux Day, Genova

Italy's open-source movement organized a national Linux Day[2] on the 28th
of October. This was also the 4th time that the ever-growing Italian Gentoo
users community were able to prepare for some evangelism of their own. This
year, the national meeting called Gentoo Day[3] was organized in
collaboration with the GLUG (Genuense Linux Users Group)[4]. Thanks to the
help of local authorities, the event was held at Palazzo Ducale, Piazza De
Ferrari, in the city of Genova.


The brave evangelists, all members of the association Gentoo Channel Italia
(GeCHI)[5], presented many talks[6] targetted at both home and professional
audiences. Some of the talks included: "Photo Manipulation with OSS", "Free
your Ipod: use RockBox", "XGL for fun and profit", and "Practical uses of
Gentoo in business environments".


3. Gentoo in the press
====================== (2 Nov 2006)

Author (and Gentoo developer) Kris Kersey reviews Intel's first quad-core
processor, the Core 2 Extreme QX6700. The review uses 64-bit Gentoo Linux
for all benchmarks. The new CPU scored impressively: emerge mozilla-firefox
took less than 8 minutes with MAKEOPTS="-j5". If you're in the market for
the best single desktop CPU that money can buy, this one is the current

4. Tips and Tricks

searching for ebuilds in overlays that are not locally available

With the diverse array of overlays now available to the community, one of
the issues a person might have is finding that overlay that is just right
for the package they are looking to install. Unfortunately, the default
search capabilities of portage are only able to search though overlays that
have already been installed on your system. Stefan Schweizer has written an
excellent article at his Planet Gentoo blog this week detailing the workings
of a tool that makes searching through remote overlays a much easier task
than ever before.

The package for this task is app-portage/eix. You will need to unmask it to
get all the latest and greatest features:

| Code Listing 4.1                                                          |
| Installing app-portage/eix                                                |
| # echo app-portage/eix >> /etc/portage/package.keywords                   |
| # emerge eix                                                              |

Then, to make sure that eix has all the information it needs about all the
available overlays, you can issue the following commands to update it:

| Code Listing 4.2                                                          |
| Updating eix's global overlay list                                        |
| # update-eix                                                              |
| # update-eix-remote update                                                |

eix is now able to search for packages in all of the available overlays in
the global layman list as well the official portage tree.

| Code Listing 4.3                                                          |
| Searching for packages                                                    |
| # eix -e xmms                                                             |
|                                                                           |
| [D] media-sound/xmms                                                      |
| Available versions:  [M]1.2.8-r5[2] [M]1.2.10-r6[2] [M]1.2.10-r8[2]       |
| [M]1.2.10-r14 [M]1.2.10-r14[3] [M]1.2.10-r15 [M]1.2.10-r15[3]             |
| [M]1.2.10-r16 [M]1.2.10-r16[3] [M]20101010[1]                             |
| Installed:           1.2.10-r15[01:54:46 08/29/06][nls esd mmx            |
| vorbis 3dnow mikmod -directfb alsa oss arts -jack -sndfile -lirc          |
| -flac mad mp3]                                                            |
| Homepage:                                        |
| Description:         X Multimedia System                                  |
|                                                                           |
| [1] (layman/fluidportage)                                                 |
| [2] (layman/gentoojp)                                                     |
| [3] (layman/zugaina)                                                      |

For more information, refer to the eix man page and the original blog post
linked below.


Using a 32-bit mplayer with 64-bit kmplayer

On amd64 systems, you can use media-video/mplayer-bin to play multimedia
files that require 32-bit only codecs (win32codecs), but mplayer doesn't
look as good as the 64-bit native version and it doesn't integrate very well
with the system. KDE users can emerge kmplayer – a KDE based "front end". If
you use konqueror, kmplayer adds a plugin to the browser. For this tip to
work, you will need to unmerge your native mplayer, if you have it. When you
install kmplayer it will not work as there is no /usr/bin/mplayer.

| Code Listing 4.1                                                          |
| Creating the mplayer link                                                 |
| ln -sf /usr/bin/mplayer-bin /usr/local/bin/mplayer                        |

Now, the native kmplayer will play wmv files and you can "preview" them in

5. Gentoo developer moves


The following developers recently left the Gentoo project:

  * Jon Portnoy (avenj)


The following developers recently joined the Gentoo project:

  * Naoaki Shindo (shindo) Japanese documentation team
  * Hans de Graaff (graaff) Xemacs
  * Dimitry Bradt (diox) Dutch documentation lead


The following developers recently changed roles within the Gentoo project:

  * none this week

6. Gentoo security

Asterisk: Multiple vulnerabilities

Asterisk is vulnerable to the remote execution of arbitrary code or a Denial
of Service.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[7]


Screen: UTF-8 character handling vulnerability

Screen contains an error in its UTF-8 character handling code that would
allow a remote Denial of Service or possibly the remote execution of
arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[8]


Qt: Integer overflow

An integer overflow flaw in the Qt pixmap handling could possibly lead to a
Denial of Service or the remote execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement[9]


7. Upcoming package removals

This is a list of packages that have been announced to be removed in the
future. The package removals come from many locations, including the
Treecleaners[10] and various developers.



Package:                 Removal date: Contact:
x11-misc/commonbox-utils 29 Nov 06     David Shakaryan[11]
games-strategy/magnant   28 Nov 06     Michael Sterrett[12]
media-libs/allegttf      28 Nov 06     Michael Sterrett[12]
games-action/phobiaiii   28 Nov 06     Michael Sterrett[12]
games-action/phobiaiii   28 Nov 06     Michael Sterrett[12]
media-sound/bpmdj        30 Nov 06     Diego Pettenò[13]
media-libs/janus         04 Dec 06     Christian Heim[14]
net-analyzer/tcpick      04 Dec 06     Christian Heim[14]
x11-wm/qvwm              04 Dec 06     Christian Heim[14]
media-libs/jpeg-mmx      05 Dec 06     Mike Frysinger[15]
x11-libs/nucleo          05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/aewm++            05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/aewm++-goodies    05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/golem             05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/integrity         05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/lwm               05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/metisse           05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/papuawm           05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/pawm              05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/pwm               05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/trswm             05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/wmi               05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]
x11-wm/xpde              05 Dec 06     David Shakaryan[11]

  11. [hidden email]
  12. [hidden email]
  13. [hidden email]
  14. [hidden email]
  15. [hidden email]

8. Bugzilla


  * Statistics
  * Closed bug ranking
  * New bug rankings


The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla ([16]) to record and track
bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the development
team. Between 29 October 2006 and 05 November 2006, activity on the site has
resulted in:


  * 866 new bugs during this period
  * 546 bugs closed or resolved during this period
  * 19 previously closed bugs were reopened this period
  * 200 bugs marked as duplicates during this period

Of the 10999 currently open bugs: 30 are labeled 'blocker', 107 are labeled
'critical', and 514 are labeled 'major'.

Closed bug rankings

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

  * Gentoo Linux Gnome Desktop Team[17], with 33 closed bugs[18]
  * Gentoo Games[19], with 24 closed bugs[20]
  * Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[21], with 19 closed bugs[22]
  * Gentoo Sound Team[23], with 16 closed bugs[24]
  * Netmon Herd[25], with 16 closed bugs[26]
  * GNU Emacs Herd[27], with 16 closed bugs[28]
  * AMD64 Project[29], with 15 closed bugs[30]
  * Default Assignee for Orphaned Packages[31], with 14 closed bugs[32]

  17. [hidden email]
  19. [hidden email]
  21. [hidden email]
  23. [hidden email]
  25. [hidden email]
  27. [hidden email]
  29. [hidden email]
  31. [hidden email]

New bug rankings

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

  * Default Assignee for New Packages[33], with 24 new bugs[34]
  * Default Assignee for Orphaned Packages[31], with 10 new bugs[35]
  * AMD64 Project[29], with 10 new bugs[36]
  * Java team[37], with 9 new bugs[38]
  * Net-Mail Packages[39], with 7 new bugs[40]
  * Gentoo KDE team[41], with 7 new bugs[42]
  * Gentoo's Team for Core System packages[21], with 7 new bugs[43]
  * Seemant Kulleen[44], with 6 new bugs[45]

  21. [hidden email]
  29. [hidden email]
  31. [hidden email]
  33. [hidden email]
  37. [hidden email]
  39. [hidden email]
  41. [hidden email]
  44. [hidden email]

9. GWN feedback

The GWN is staffed by volunteers and members of the community who submit
ideas and articles. If you are interested in writing for the GWN, have
feedback on an article that we have posted, or just have an idea or article
that you would like to submit to the GWN, please send us your feedback[46]
and help make the GWN better.

  46. [hidden email]

10. GWN subscription information

To subscribe to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter, send a blank e-mail to
[hidden email].

To unsubscribe to the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter, send a blank e-mail to
[hidden email] from the e-mail address you are subscribed

11. Other languages

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

  * Chinese (Simplified)[47]
  * Danish[48]
  * Dutch[49]
  * English[50]
  * German[51]
  * Greek[52]
  * French[53]
  * Korean[54]
  * Japanese[55]
  * Italian[56]
  * Polish[57]
  * Portuguese (Brazil)[58]
  * Portuguese (Portugal)[59]
  * Russian[60]
  * Slovak[61]
  * Spanish[62]


Ulrich Plate <[hidden email]> - Editor
Chris Atkinson <[hidden email]> - Author
Kyle Bishop <[hidden email]> - Author
Andrea Perotti <[hidden email]> - Author
Piotr Maliński <[hidden email]> - Author
Josh Saddler <[hidden email]> - Author
Chris Gianelloni <[hidden email]> - Author

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