Review of 2005

Inspired by the current discussion on the gentoo-dev mailing list about an overall vision, I took a short break to reflect what the Gentoo/AMD64 team did during the year 2005. As an arch team, it’s our main job to just keep everything up to date — nothing one would consider ‘moving mountains’. However, there were far more things that kept us busy:

  • We have fixed nearly 1500 bugs that were either assigned to amd64@g.o or amd64-test@g.o
  • Beside those, there were (of course) plenty of stablization requests that were “fixed”.
  • Thanks to the AT project, we managed to recruit 22 active ATs, of which 6 became devs
  • We had two releases, 2005.0 and 2005.1, plus the bugfix-release 2005.1-r1, all beeing a success.
  • With 2005.0, we introduced a complete new way of handling multilib, which allows to handle dependancies in a far easier way for the user. Yes, many had problems with the upgrade from 2004.x to 2005.0 as it was pretty complex, but after all, it was possible. Somewhen in the second half of the year, we finally deprecated 2004.3.
  • The multilib-strict FEATURE helped us to find almost all packages that install libraries into the wrong directory. While it was really only usable for development in the beginning (I’d say every 4th package was broken), it turned into a very nice QA tool and only a few packages still fail because of multilib-strict.
  • The stable tree was dramatically improved. I would say it is now possible to run a stable amd64 system without having a huge package.keywords filled up with ~amd64 entries: we’re nearly as up to date as x86. The change of the keywording policy helped a lot to improve the situation: We’re now notified through a bug whenever a maintainer thinks his package is stable enough to go stable.
  • We got several boxes sponsored by different companies. With these boxes, we could provide accounts for other Gentoo developers that wanted to test their patches and/or new versions of their packages.
  • Documentation has improved too of course: We got a FAQ and a HOWTO briefly explaining how to set up a 32bit chroot for those who still need one. Also, we put together a list of libraries covered by the emul-x86-linux-* packages. With this list we can guarantee that vulnerabilities are not only fixed in the real packages but also in the emul packages. We also wrote new documentation as part of the Unofficial Gentoo Development Guide.
  • Gentoo/AMD64 became easier to install! As a consequence of this, we were able to deprecate the now no-longer needed technotes. The handbook should be enough to cover everything a user wants to know at install time, multilib has become far easier and lots of packages were fixed so that the list of popular apps that don’t run natively on amd64 was cut down to ‘Flash & OpenOffice’.
  • Last but not least, we’ve improved the user<->developer communication a LOT. I can’t show you any figures, this is just my personal impression 🙂
  • But the most important of all: We had lots of fun.

Now have a look at this list and tell me that we didn’t do anything exciting during the last year.

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