An easy way to assist us

March 4, 2010 · Posted in Gentoo 

Well, today I am gonna focus on two different types of packages. Those who never had a maintainer and those abandoned by their initial maintainers.

Looking through bugzilla, you might notice that some of the bus are assigned to maintainer-wanted herd. This means that those packages are seeking for a gentoo developer or a gentoo-user ( acting as proxy-maintainer ) to take care of them and push them on tree or Sunrise. So if you file a bug for a new ebuild, we will probably assign it to that herd and wait until somebody picks it.  Personally, I go through that list once a while and pick up interesting packages but I don’t know if the rest of the devs are in the same path. If you feel like a package is really cool and we should really have it on tree, feel free to write an ebuild for it and then commit it on Sunrise or poke me and I will commit it on tree (after we review it) and I will add you as proxy-maintainer

The maintainer-needed packages are orphan packages on tree. This is because their initial developer got bored taking care of them or because this developer has been retired. Hence nobody is taking care of them, nobody bumps them, nobody fixes the various bugs which pop up from time to time. Again, I go through that list and either remove them on behalf of treecleaner project or fix them on behalf of QA project. So the question is:

Can you help? If you file a bug on a maintainer-needed package, most likely nobody will fix it. But if you attach a patch that actually fixes the problem, then a guy from treecleaners/QA project will probably pop up and commit your patch. Congruts, you saved a package from being removed. Simple?

In order to help you,  I will give you the two URLs from gentoo bugzilla I use to track maintainer-needed and -wanted bugs

* maintainer-needed

* maintainer-wanted

Happy bug fixing


12 Responses to “An easy way to assist us”

  1. Francois on March 4th, 2010 11:13 am

    Well the bugzilla links don’t work for me:
    The search named maintainer-needed does not exist.

    I guess you just posted an alias for one of your search, not sure
    that works for everyone.


  2. Markos on March 4th, 2010 11:33 am

    Fixed :)

  3. Milan on March 4th, 2010 11:51 am

    Hmm, but it doesn’t look that simple, see for example. Someone did write patches that solved problems, but nobody from devs even looked at patches and now will be removed from tree. There are many similar cases. Finally, user decides not to even bother to try to fix something.

  4. Markos on March 4th, 2010 11:58 am

    Trust me it wont be removed. It is just masked because of the security issues and pmasking it is a way to block security holes. But it wont be removed. We have 60days left to take care of it

  5. toralf on March 4th, 2010 3:17 pm

    Both links don’t work while reading this article at – however they work from here.

  6. Markos on March 4th, 2010 7:42 pm

    Thanks because planet gentoo has cached the old links

  7. knecht on March 5th, 2010 2:05 am

    your idea sounds good, its maybe obvious that someone can help that way, but its also important to tell that all the people that are new to gentoo (like me).

    I’ll help if i can!

  8. Raffaello D. Di Napoli on March 9th, 2010 9:45 pm

    Roger that, I’m in it. I hope I’ll help decrease that forevergrowing pile of bugs.

    I also answered to a call for help by Gilles Dartiguelongue (although only offering my modest means) to stabilize GNOME, but I guess I wasn’t deemed useful enough.

    So, I’ll try this instead.

    I believe in Gentoo just as much as I believe Gentoo needs help. That is, a lot.
    Which makes me feel bad about the fact most of my programming skills (almost 10 years experience with Win32, and 5 writing PHP and JavaScript) aren’t that useful to Gentoo, and I can only offer my ebuild skills and my increasing fluency in Python.

    Anyway, thank you for these precious links. And your work with Gentoo, of course.

  9. Markos on March 10th, 2010 6:22 pm

    You dont have to be a programmer or a Linux guru to help our beloved distribution :) Even a single bug report is precious to us :)

  10. Raffaello D. Di Napoli on March 10th, 2010 8:41 pm

    Oh, I’ve filed several bugs and enhancements, some of them are still waiting even a single first comment :) (286201, 293309, 294156, 297094)

    That’s one reason I’m trying to help get rid of obsolete bugs. By the way, some bugs are really old, mentioning upstream web sites that don’t even exist anymore. Is there any “speedy RESOLVED WONTFIX” procedure available for those?

  11. Markos on March 10th, 2010 8:50 pm

    Dead packages probably means no-maintainer or at least no *active* maintainer. Our policy is not to remove dead ( old packages, broken homepages ) if they still work and there are no serious open bugs. But as soon as a critical bug appears, if nobody cares ( developer or user ) to provide a trivial patch for it, we ( treecleaners ) will remove it :)

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