My Free Software Activities in November 2016

My monthly report covers a large part of what I have been doing in the free software world. I write it for my donors (thanks to them!) but also for the wider Debian community because it can give ideas to newcomers and it’s one of the best ways to find volunteers to work with me on projects that matter to me.

Debian LTS

In the 11 hours of (paid) work I had to do, I managed to release DLA-716-1 aka tiff 4.0.2-6+deb7u8 fixing CVE-2016-9273, CVE-2016-9297 and CVE-2016-9532. It looks like this package is currently getting new CVE every month.

Then I spent quite some time to review all the entries in dla-needed.txt. I wanted to get rid of some misleading/no longer applicable comments and at the same time help Olaf who was doing LTS frontdesk work for the first time. I ended up tagging quite a few issues as no-dsa (meaning that we will do nothing for them as they are not serious enough) such as those affecting dwarfutils, dokuwiki, irssi. I dropped libass since the open CVE is disputed and was triaged as unimportant. While doing this, I fixed a bug in the bin/review-update-needed script that we use to identify entries that have not made any progress lately.

Then I claimed libgc and and released DLA-721-1 aka libgc 1:7.1-9.1+deb7u1 fixing CVE-2016-9427. The patch was large and had to be manually backported as it was not applying cleanly.

The last thing I did was to test a new imagemagick and review the update prepared by Roberto.

pkg-security work

The pkg-security team is continuing its good work: I sponsored patator to get rid of a useless dependency on pycryptopp which was going to be removed from testing due to #841581. After looking at that bug, it turns out the bug was fixed in libcrypto++ 5.6.4-3 and I thus closed it.

I sponsored many uploads: polenum, acccheck, sucrack (minor updates), bbqsql (new package imported from Kali). A bit later I fixed some issues in the bbsql package that had been rejected from NEW.

I managed a few RC bugs related to the openssl 1.1 transition: I adopted sslsniff in the team and fixed #828557 by build-depending on libssl1.0-dev after having opened the proper upstream ticket. I did the same for ncrack and #844303 (upstream ticket here). Someone else took care of samdump2 but I still adopted the package in the pkg-security team as it is a security relevant package. I also made an NMU for axel and #829452 (it’s not pkg-security related but we still use it in Kali).

Misc Debian work

Django. I participated in the discussion about a change letting Django count the number of developers that use it. Such a change has privacy implications and the discussion sparked quite some interest both in Debian mailing lists and up to LWN.

On a more technical level, I uploaded version 1.8.16-1~bpo8+1 to jessie-backports (security release) and I fixed RC bug #844139 by backporting two upstream commits. This led to the 1.10.3-2 upload. I ensured that this was fixed in the 1.10.x upstream branch too.

dpkg and merged /usr. While reading debian-devel, I discovered dpkg bug #843073 that was threatening the merged-/usr feature. Since the bug was in code that I wrote a few years ago, and since Guillem was not interested in fixing it, I spent an hour to craft a relatively clean patch that Guillem could apply. Unfortunately, Guillem did not yet manage to pull out a new dpkg release with the patches applied. Hopefully it won’t be too long until this happens.

Debian Live. I closed #844332 which was a request to remove live-build from Debian. While it was marked as orphaned, I was always keeping an eye on it and have been pushing small fixes to git. This time I decided to officially adopt the package within the debian-live team and work a bit more on it. I reviewed all pending patches in the BTS and pushed many changes to git. I still have some pending changes to finish to prettify the Grub menu but I plan to upload a new version really soon now.

Misc bugs filed. I filed two upstream tickets on uwsgi to help fix currently open RC bugs on the package. I filed #844583 on sbuild to support arbitrary version suffix for binary rebuild (binNMU). And I filed #845741 on xserver-xorg-video-qxl to get it fixed for the xorg 1.19 transition.

Zim. While trying to fix #834405 and update the required dependencies, I discovered that I had to update pygtkspellcheck first. Unfortunately, its package maintainer was MIA (missing in action) so I adopted it first as part of the python-modules team.

Distro Tracker. I fixed a small bug that resulted in an ugly traceback when we got queries with a non-ASCII HTTP_REFERER.

Thanks

See you next month for a new summary of my activities.

Freexian’s report about Debian Long Term Support, October 2016

A Debian LTS logoLike each month, here comes a report about the work of paid contributors to Debian LTS.

Individual reports

In October, about 175 work hours have been dispatched among 14 paid contributors. Their reports are available:

Evolution of the situation

The number of sponsored hours did not change this month. We still need a couple of supplementary sponsors to reach our objective of funding the equivalent of a full time position.

The security tracker currently lists 34 packages with a known CVE and the dla-needed.txt file 29. The situation improved slightly compared to last month.

Thanks to our sponsors

New sponsors are in bold.

My Free Software Activities in October 2016

My monthly report covers a large part of what I have been doing in the free software world. I write it for my donors (thanks to them!) but also for the wider Debian community because it can give ideas to newcomers and it’s one of the best ways to find volunteers to work with me on projects that matter to me.

Debian LTS

Last month I started to work on tiff3 but had not enough time to complete an update, it turns out the issues were hairy enough that nobody else picked up the package. So this month I started again with tiff3 and tiff and I ended up spending my 13h on those two packages.

I filed bugs for issues that were not yet reported to the BTS (#842361 for CVE-2016-5652, #842046 for CVE-2016-5319/CVE-2016-3633/CVE-2015-8668). I marked many CVE as not affecting tiff3 as this source package does not ship the tools (the “tiff” source package does).

Since upstream decided to drop many tools instead of fixing the corresponding security issues, I opted to remove the tools as well. Before doing this, I looked up reverse dependencies of libtiff-tools to ensure that none of the tools removed are used by other packages (the maintainer seems to agree too).

I backported upstream patches for CVE-2016-6223 and CVE-2016-5652.

But the bulk of the time, I spent on CVE-2014-8128, CVE-2015-7554 and CVE-2016-5318. I believe they are all variants of the same problem and upstream seems to agree since he opened a sort of meta-bug to track them. I took inspiration from a patch suggested in ticket #2499 and generalized it a bit by trying to add the tag data for all tags manipulated by the various tools. It was a tiresome process as there are many tags used in multiple places. But in the end, it works as expected. I can no longer reproduce any of the segfaults with the problematic files.

I asked for review/test on the mailing list but did not get much feedback. I’m going to upload the updated packages soon.

Distro Tracker

I noticed a sudden raise in the number of email addresses being automatically unsubscribed from the Debian Package Tracker and I got a few request of bounces. It turns out the BTS has been relaying lots of spam with executables files and those are bounced by Google (and not silently discarded). This is all very unfortunate… the spam flood is unlikely to stop soon and I can’t expect Google to change either, so I had little choice except trying to make the bounce handler smarter. That’s what I did: I have a list of regular expression that will discard a bounce. In other words, once matched the bounce won’t count towards the limit that triggers the automatic unsubscription.

Misc Debian work

Bugs filed. In #839403, I suggest the possibility to set the default pin priority for a source in the sources.list file directly. In #840436 I ask the selenium-firefoxdriver maintainer to do what is required to get this non-free package auto-built.

Packaging. I sponsored puppet-lint 2.0.2-0.1 and I reviewed the rozofs package (wihch I just sponsored into experimental for a start).

Publicity. I’m maintaining the Debian account on Twitter and Facebook. I have been using twitterfeed.com up to now but it’s closing down. I followed their recommendations and switched to dlvr.it to automatically post entries out of the micronews.debian.org feed. In #841165, I reported that the chroots created by sbuild-createchroot are lacking the usual IPv6 entries created by netbase. In #841503, I report a very common cryptsetup upgrade failure that I saw multiple times (both in Debian and in Kali).

Thanks

See you next month for a new summary of my activities.

Freexian’s report about Debian Long Term Support, September 2016

A Debian LTS logoLike each month, here comes a report about the work of paid contributors to Debian LTS.

Individual reports

In September, about 152 work hours have been dispatched among 13 paid contributors. Their reports are available:

  • Balint Reczey did 15 hours (out of 12.25 hours allocated + 7.25 remaining, thus keeping 4.5 extra hours for October).
  • Ben Hutchings did 6 hours (out of 12.3 hours allocated + 1.45 remaining, he gave back 7h and thus keeps 9.75 extra hours for October).
  • Brian May did 12.25 hours.
  • Chris Lamb did 12.75 hours (out of 12.30 hours allocated + 0.45 hours remaining).
  • Emilio Pozuelo Monfort did 1 hour (out of 12.3 hours allocated + 2.95 remaining) and gave back the unused hours.
  • Guido Günther did 6 hours (out of 7h allocated, thus keeping 1 extra hour for October).
  • Hugo Lefeuvre did 12 hours.
  • Jonas Meurer did 8 hours (out of 9 hours allocated, thus keeping 1 extra hour for October).
  • Markus Koschany did 12.25 hours.
  • Ola Lundqvist did 11 hours (out of 12.25 hours assigned thus keeping 1.25 extra hours).
  • Raphaël Hertzog did 12.25 hours.
  • Roberto C. Sanchez did 14 hours (out of 12.25h allocated + 3.75h remaining, thus keeping 2 extra hours).
  • Thorsten Alteholz did 12.25 hours.

Evolution of the situation

The number of sponsored hours reached 172 hours per month thanks to maxcluster GmbH joining as silver sponsor and RHX Srl joining as bronze sponsor.

We only need a couple of supplementary sponsors now to reach our objective of funding the equivalent of a full time position.

The security tracker currently lists 39 packages with a known CVE and the dla-needed.txt file 34. It’s a small bump compared to last month but almost all issues are affected to someone.

Thanks to our sponsors

New sponsors are in bold.