Other articles


  1. Please Help to Port python-debianbts to Python3

    Dear Lazyweb,

    I'm currently trying to find a way to port python-debianbts to Python3. Debian's standard bugreport tool reportbug depends on python-debianbts and can thus not convert to Python3 if python-debianbts does not as well. Unfortunately python-debianbts depends on SoapPy for parsing the Debian bugtracker's responses, and that library is …

    read more
  2. .inputrc

    A few days ago I found this blog explaining how to improve the tab completion by tinkering with your .inputrc.

    The magic lines are:
    set show-all-if-ambiguous on set completion-ignore-case on set completion-map-case on

    Last two lines make tab-completion ignore case, hyphens, underscores, the first one spares you one tab when …

    read more
  3. Speech Recognition Software

    Dear Lazyweb,

    Having broke my elbow last week, I'm experiencing serious trouble typing with only one hand on the computer. I know that there is speech to text software, but I was never really interested in that -- until now of course. Is there any good software available on Linux you …

    read more
  4. KDE4's annoying taskbar

    Dear Lazyweb,

    since KDE4 is in unstable, the taskbar behaves very annoyingly when working with two monitors with different resolutions. I have a laptop. When I'm at work, I put it into a docking station which is connected to a huge monitor. I'm not working with dualhead or something, I'm …

    read more
  5. Not coming to DebConf

    Unfortunately Debian cannot sponsor my trip to Banja Luka this year and it's too expensive to pay it from my own budget. Thus I just cancelled my attendance for the conference. I'm very sad, since my first DebConf last year in NY was a lot of fun and I was …

    read more
  6. Dear Lazyweb

    After todays or yesterdays daily package update (Sid) several kernel modules, namely thinkpad_acpi, snd-hda-intel and probably others are not loaded automatically anymore. So my Thinkpad T500 had no support for audio and several power management functions anymore. Once I found out that the missing kernel modules where the problem, the …

    read more
  7. Squeeze

    Tonight Squeeze was released! Along with the release came a redesign of our website and planet. Nice! I'm particularly happy that we'll see lots of fresh software and updates in unstable again, now that it is not frozen anymore.

    Thanks to all contributors. Keep up the good work!

    read more
  8. Canon IXUS 130

    Dear Lazyweb,

    Today I bought me a Canon IXUS 130 and was quite disappointed to see that it couldn't properly connect to my Debian/Sid machine via USB. Apparenty the camera is not recognized as a USB Mass Storage Device but utilizes PTP. I upgraded to libgphoto2 (2.4.10 …

    read more
  9. Introducing python-popcon

    Python-popcon is a small Python library which allows to query Debian's popcon database. The usage is very trivial:

    >>> import popcon

    >>> popcon.package('python-popcon')

    >>> popcon.package('icedove', 'iceweasel')

    >>> popcon.package('foobarbaz')
    {}

    You can call the package method with an arbitrary number of package names and it will return a dictionary with …

    read more
  10. Goodbye DebConf10

    DebConf was really an awesome conference. I'm happy that I have finally met so many of the fellow Debian people I only knew from the mailing lists or planet. There where lot's of interesting talks, the hacklabs where always busy, and the overall atmosphere was very good. Now that I'm …

    read more
  11. linen and towels

    Dear lazyweb or someone who is already in NY,

    do I have to bring my own bed linen and towels or are they provided by Furnald? I couldn't find the information on the website. I guess I have to bring that stuff since it is not really a hotel, right …

    read more
  12. I may go to Debconf 10

    Today I received a mail from the DebConf Travel Sponsorship Team and they informed me that I may get partially (or fully) sponsored. Ok that's a bit vague for now, but that also means that I may come to Debconf 10 -- yeah!

    I also applied for this Debconf Newbies thingy …

    read more
  13. apt-get update slow when LANG != C?

    For a few weeks now, aptitude is really slow updating the package list -- downloading the lists is actually fast as normal but it always waits for a minute or so with a 99% [Warten auf Kopfzeilen] (Waiting for headers) message. I tried apt-get update -- same problem.

    Now the funny thing …

    read more
  14. Query Google Scholar using Python

    In desperate need to organize my collection of scientific papers, I had a look at various tools which could help me organizing them. Probably one of the best out there is Mendeley. Mendeley seems to be a very good tool to keep your massive collection of pdfs under control. Unfortunately …

    read more
  15. Amarok going downhill

    Amarok 2.2 is probably the only audio application on the market unable connect properly to the IPod. It is impossible to copy podcasts within Amarok to the IPod since Amarok 2.x. This functionality simply disappeared during the 1.x to 2.x version jump. You can download and …

    read more
  16. SO_REUSEADDR

    Dear Lazyweb,

    I have a simple test application where a TCP/IP server listens for incoming connections, reads the data and closes the connection again and a client which opens connections to the server and sends a package and closes the connection as fast as it can:

    The server looks …

    read more
  17. Debconf 11 in Berlin?

    This is just a quick note for everyone who is interested: Yesterday we had a small meeting discussing the plan to bring Debconf 11 to Berlin, Germany. There will be an official meeting regarding this topic at this year's LinuxTag. The meeting will probably take place on Friday the 26th …

    read more
  18. LinuxTag 2009

    Nion just reminded me of this year's LinuxTag. Although I certainly won't have the time to help at the booth every day as in the last years, I hope I can manage to work there at least for one or two days.

    If you want to help at our booth …

    read more
  19. Using rng for bug triaging

    Reportbug-NG's ability to filter and sort bugreports in various ways can greatly help triaging bugreports after a certain criterion.

    In this example I use the bugs of the KDE team, because they have quite a lot of bugs and are currently on a bug triage.

    Two releases ago I tried …

    read more
  20. Reportbug finally has a GUI!

    It's good to see that reportbug 4 finally has a graphical user interface -- it's GTK, but nobody's perfect :)

    Anyways, I'm really glad to see reportbug aiming to improve it's usability.

    Reportbug finally shows all the bugreports for a package in a list which is easily filterable. So when you're confronted …

    read more
  21. git-svn branch

    Dear Lazyweb,

    how do I push a local git branch to a new svn branch? The other way round is quite easy and well documented but I didn't find a single document describing what I want to do.

    I'm working with an svn repository with standard layout. I use git-svn …

    read more
  22. Lenny

    Today Lenny was finally released. According to this page with roughly 120 open release critical bugs. That's quite a big number according to our standards, but still a good and necessary compromise. Thanks for everyone involved, good work everyone!

    I'm very happy that the release didn't take quite as long …

    read more
  23. Nice(r) console fonts

    Ever wanted to get a nicer console font than the default one delivered with Debian?

    First you need to get a nice font. I chose console-terminus:

    \$ sudo aptitude install console-terminus

    that alone won't change anything but install a whole bunch of new fonts into /usr/share/consolefonts/. To enable one …

    read more
  24. How many bugs have you fixed today?

    That is the sledgehammer argument people bring up when others dare to criticize the current release process.

    I think this question is nonsense. While the bug-fix rate was more or less the same since the last two releases, it looks like in this release we simply started the freeze with …

    read more
  25. Lenny Release General Resolution

    I agree, this vote is one of the worst formulated I can remember. I think votes should be as easy as possible to understand, so that the voter is absolutely clear about what he's going to vote. The current vote is the perfect example how not to design such a …

    read more
  26. Lenovo T500 (shiny new laptop)

    Yesterday I exchanged my "old" Thinkpad T60 with a shiny new T500. This time I ordered a Thinkpad with integrated Intel graphics since it's supposed to be way better supported than the graphic chips from ATI or NVIDIA under Linux. And of course it is supposed to be much more …

    read more
  27. rm -rf /

    ... does not work. At least not today on a Debian/Sid system. Looks like there are some things, not even root is allowed to do:

    root@sid:~# rm -rf / rm: cannot remove root directory ‘/'

    If you're curious what happens when you wipe your disk on a running system:

    root@sid …

    read more
  28. Tags

    Version 1.2 of reportbug-ng now shows the tags of a bug if available. This was long overdue. Now you can for example, quickly search your bugs for the ones with the moreinfo-tag set and sort the resulting list by the date of the last action. This should give you …

    read more
  29. Gettext and QT4?

    Dear Lazyweb,

    do you know how to translate QT4 applications with gettext? Looks like QT4 now uses it's own mechanism (lupdate -> .ts -> linguist -> .ts -> lrelease -> .qm) for translating strings, which makes things a bit complicated if the rest of your application (the non GUI part) still uses gettext.

    The background …

    read more
  30. Rng 1.0 in unstable

    I've finished the porting of rng from qt3 to qt4 and uploaded it to unstable. It has some minor regressions compared to the qt3 version, like the localization of the qt4 widgets which isn't working yet and that the column which sorts the table isn't saved and restored properly on …

    read more
  31. Porting rng to QT4

    Today I was busy porting reportbug-ng to QT4. One really cool thing I noticed is the new QWebView widget, which is the main widget of the QWebKit module. It works surprisingly easy compared to the good old QTextBrowser of QT3 -- now you can just throw an URL at it and …

    read more
  32. Maximize vs Maximize to Preferred Size

    In times where screen resolutions of 1600x... and above are becoming more and more common, I wonder if the maximize window button which enlarges a window to take all the available space on the desktop is still as useful as it used to be.

    I noticed that some (if not …

    read more
  33. Segfaults Everywhere

    Dear Lazyweb,

    A few weeks ago rng started to show some segfaulty behavior. I've absolutely no idea what's going on, since Python code usually doesn't segfault. I guess the problem lies in the qt3-bindings rng uses -- does someone know how to verify this?

    There is a backtrace which seems to …

    read more
  34. Tab Completion in Python's Interactive Mode

    While browsing the python docs, I accidentally stumbled upon this today. It describes how to get Tab completion in Python's interactive shell:

    1. Create a ~/.pythonrc file with the following content:

      try:
          import readline
      except ImportError:
          print "Module readline not available."
      else:
          import rlcompleter
          readline.parse_and_bind("tab: complete")
      
    2. Put this somewhere …

    read more
  35. Good Python IDE

    Philipp asked for a good Python IDE. I'd recommend Pydev, which is a plugin for Eclipse and works really well. I use it exclusively when coding in Python, and I'm very happy with it.

    Unfortunately the eclipse version in unstable is not the current one, so you can't use the …

    read more
  36. Merry Christmas everyone!

    Since it's already that time of the year again, merry Christmas everyone! I hope you're able to spend the holidays with the ones you love and enjoy a merry, merry Christmas! Have fun everyone!

    BTW: Am I the only one who really hates this freakin' "Last Christmas"-song by WHAM …

    read more
  37. Time-lapse-video-with-your-webcam mini HOWTO

    I bought me a cheapo webcam the other day and the first thing (meh... actually the second. The first thing I had to do was obviously getting this little piece of plastic working...) I wanted to do was making a time-lapse video of me working on my diploma thesis or …

    read more
  38. (Almost) Back

    Due some drastic changes in my personal life, I wasn't very active in the last two months. Now things are getting normal again, and I'm looking forward working on rng and my other packages again.

    Sorry for all the unanswered mails, I'll need some time to clear the backlog.

    I'm …

    read more
  39. My top 5 Firefox/Thunderbird annoyances

    Firefox is constantly gaining marked share (especially here in Europe) and it's little not-yet-so-popular brother Thunderbird is evolving too. While I'm happy that they're contributing their part to bring Free Software to the masses, I'm concerned that the quality of their software (especially Firefox under Linux) has decreased in the …

    read more
  40. Reportbug-NG finally in testing!

    Waiting ten days for rng to slip into testing, I had enough time to stuff the next version with new features and small bugfixes. The most interesting ones are:

    • Added SOAP support and enabled it by default. Feel free to mess around with the look and feel of our BTS …
    read more
  41. What does it take to break rng?

    Actually just a small change in the html code of our BTS. The problem was easy to fix and the new version is already uploaded, but this shows again how fragile the connection between BTS' html output and rng is. I've heard other tools where affected too -- just one reason …

    read more
  42. 1 Kilobyte = 1000 ± 24 bytes

    Could you exactly say how big your hard disk has to be at least when the vendor claims it's 500 Gigabytes big? Do you know how many bytes a file has when the filemanager says 2 Megabytes? Do you know what your DSL-provider actually means with 2 Megabit per second …

    read more
  43. LinuxTag

    My first day at LinuxTag is over. I'm a bit tired, but the day was nice. We had many visitors at our booth and some nice conversations. We sold a few t-shirts and gave a way a lot of Debian DVDs. Unfortunately there was also a high demand on Live …

    read more
  44. Using zeroconf to resolve local hostnames

    If you bought one of those cheap WLAN-routers which provides a DHCP server but no DNS (why again?), you probably miss the feature to access your hosts in the LAN by their name, right?

    If you're running a fairly recent Linux distribution (yes, Etch works too), just try to ping …

    read more
  45. 4GB RAM on a T60?

    Dear Lazyweb,

    at work we have bought some of those shiny new ThinkPad T60s with 64Bit. Some of them have 4GB RAM installed, but unfortunately those with 4GB only seem to have 3GB available under Debian/Etch/AMD64.

    Since those laptops are running on AMD64 kernels, they should work with …

    read more
  46. New queries for reportbug-ng

    Instead of the boring "package" queries, rng used to support 'till now, rng now supports all the queries our BTS supports:

    package
    Returns all the bugs belonging to the PACKAGE
    bugnumber
    Returns the bug with BUGNUMBER and loads it into the built in browser immediately
    maintainer@foo.bar
    Returns all …
    read more
  47. Reportbug-NG migrated from SVN to BZR

    The migration was rather easy

    sudo aptitude install bzr-svn
    # patch (see below)
    bzr branch svn://svn.debian.org/reportbug-ng    # That's right I branch directly from a SVN repo!
    # ignore the error
    bzr push --use-existing-dir sftp://venthur@bzr.debian.org/bzr/reportbug-ng
    

    To get your own branch:

    bzr branch http …
    read more
  48. Dear SoC enthusiasts,

    please stop writing mails asking me whether I'd like to mentor your yet-another-reportbug-alternative project.

    It's not that I'm opposed to the idea of rewriting reportbug(-ng) for gtk or as a webapp -- really. I just don't see why your project needs to be part of SoC.

    I know working for …

    read more
  49. Dear Lazyweb,

    Icedove, Iceape, Evolution, Sylpheed, Sylpheed-Claws and Mutt.

    Is your favorite mail client missing? Does your mail client accept URLs in mailto-format? If yes, please drop me a note containing the name of your mail client, if it needs a terminal (like mutt) and an example call which starts the client …

    read more
  50. Reportbug-NG at Alioth

    Yesterday I mentioned a small project of mine called reportbug-ng. The feedback so far was very positive. Looks like quite a few people out there would like to see a desktop version of reportbug.

    Since I've already received a few patches via email, I decided to move the project to …

    read more
  51. A Screencast is Worth a Thousand Pictures

    It's still in a very early stage (I've started coding it yesterday), but it's basic functionality is already there: You can query the BTS, filter the list of bugreports in realtime by typing something and view the full bugreports in HTML. You can even provide additional information for existing bugs …

    read more
  52. Pimp My Boot Process (III)

    Short version:
    $ sudo aptitude install desktop-base splashy splashy-themes $ sudo splashy_config --set-theme debian-moreblue $ sudo vim /boot/grub/menu.lst

    [...]
    timeout 3
    hiddenmenu
    [...]
    # defoptions=quiet splash
    [...]
    

    $ sudo update-grub

    Long version:

    A few weeks ago I tried to improve the visual appearance of my boot process using usplash and a matching grub splash …

    read more
  53. RC Bug Triage

    In the last three days I made 15 NMUs, fixing 11 RC- and 4 l10n-bugs.

    I noticed that some maintainers were not aware that one of their packages had an open RC bug from the mails I received afterwards. So please double check your QA package for open RC bugs …

    read more
  54. Random Firefox Tweaks

    The following options have to be changed or added in about:config. Those tweaks can of course be achieved through extensions, but by setting them directly you can abandon some extensions and hopefully conserve some memory.

    In order to open a bookmark-folder with mid-click in tabs without overwriting the current …

    read more
  55. Pimp My Boot Process

    I've tested Ubuntu the other day and I must say I was really impressed how polished the boot process looked. Ubuntu uses the same image as grub splash and as usplash image. This has the nice effect that there is no visible switch between grub and usplash. I don't remember …

    read more