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Gentoo Weekly Newsletter: 4 December 2006


1.  Gentoo News

Gentoo Linux on the Playstation 3

So you waited in line for 36 hours, dodging bullets and armed thugs, to get your shiny new Playstation 3, now what do you do with it? Install Gentoo Linux, of course!

Several people have worked on getting Gentoo set up on their PS3. If you are interested in doing this yourself, there are some instructions to get you on your way. The author explains what is necessary before starting your install, and gives directions on how to proceed, along with some pictures of the system booting both the Gentoo Linux PPC64 InstallCD and the system after installation.

Also of interest to CELL users will be Luca Barbato's developer overlay, which contains newer CELL packages, as well as some information in the wiki that Luca has gathered together.

Southern California Linux Expo 5x opens registration

Effective immediately, registration for SCALE 5X is available at The early bird ticket price is $60 for full admission with a $30 admission for students with a valid ID. Prices go up on January 24th, so register today.

If you're interested in seeing who's participating in SCALE, the exhibitor list is at Gentoo will be exhibiting at the show, come out and support your fellow developers!

SCALE will be February 10-11, 2007, at The Westin Los Angeles Airport. For those staying over, The Westin is offering special hotel room rates for the Expo. Hotel information is available at

New user representative elected

As of Friday 17th November, George Prowse, known to most as cokehabit, has left the Gentoo User Relations project and his position as User Representative. Regrettably, as things turned out, he did not fit the role as well as many had hoped, and it was decided that it would be in everyone's best interests to part ways. We would like to thank George for his time and work as a user representative, and wish him luck in his future endeavors.

On a related note, it was resolved at a meeting between User Relations and the User Representatives on December 2nd, 2006 to instate Alex Bokag aka djay-il as the eleventh and last User Representative. This motion passed unanimously and Alex accepted the position with immediate effect. We welcome Alex on-board and look forward to working closely with him over the next year.

2.  Heard in the community



Diego "Flameeyes" Pettenò noticed that the alsa-drivers package didn't have ALSA_CARDS as an USE-expanded variable. He tried it out and thought it looked fine.

Code Listing 2.1: Diego's Output

Calculating dependencies... done!
[ebuild   R   ] media-sound/alsa-driver-1.0.14_pre20061130  USE="-debug -doc 
ALSA_CARDS="-ad1816a% -ad1848% -ad1848-lib% -ad1889% -adlib% -ali5451% -als100%
-als300% -als4000% -aoa% -aoa-fabric-layout% -aoa-onyx% -aoa-soundbus%
-aoa-soundbus-i2s% -aoa-tas% -aoa-toonie% -armaaci% -asihpi% -at91-soc%
-at91-soc-eti-b1-wm8731% -atiixp% -atiixp-modem% -au1x00% -au8810% -au8820%
-au8830% -azt2320% -azt3328% bt87x%* -ca0106% -cmi8330% -cmipci% -cs4231%
-cs4231-lib% -cs4232% -cs4236% -cs4281% -cs46xx% -cs5535audio% -darla20%
-darla24% -dt019x% -dummy% -echo3g% -emu10k1% -emu10k1x% -ens1370% -ens1371%
-es1688% -es18xx% -es1938% -es1968% -es968% -fm801% -fm801-tea575x% -gina20%
-gina24% -gusclassic% -gusextreme% -gusmax% -harmony% -hda-intel% -hdsp%
-hdspm% -ice1712% -ice1724% -indigo% -indigodj% -indigoio% -intel8x0%
-intel8x0m% -interwave% -interwave-stb% -korg1212% -layla20% -layla24%
-loopback% -maestro3% -mia% -miro% -mixart% -mona% -mpu401% -msnd-pinnacle%
-mtpav% -mts64% -nm256% -opl3sa2% -opti92x-ad1848% -opti92x-cs4231% -opti93x%
-pc98-cs4232% -pcsp% -pcxhr% -pdaudiocf% -pdplus% -portman2x4% -powermac%
-pxa2xx-i2sound% -pxa2xx-soc% -pxa2xx-soc-corgi% -pxa2xx-soc-poodle%
-pxa2xx-soc-spitz% -pxa2xx-soc-tosa% -riptide% -rme32% -rme96% -rme9652%
-s3c2410% -sa11xx-uda1341% -sb16% -sb8% -sbawe% -seq-dummy% -serial-u16550%
-serialmidi% -sgalaxy% -soc% -sonicvibes% -sscape% -sun-amd7930% -sun-cs4231%
-sun-dbri% -trident% -usb-audio% -usb-usx2y% via82xx%* -via82xx-modem%
-virmidi% -vx222% -vxpocket% -wavefront% -ymfpci%" 0 kB

Diego asked if there was any reason he shouldn't implement this. Marius Mauch had no objection, so long as the default settings were sane. He indicated that he doubted the sanity of the above list of potential drivers.

Diego responded that by default, all drivers were built. To objections from Petteri Räty that it should, like other IUSE items, work in the opposite way (enabling nothing unless selected), Diego noted that there were some IUSE which enabled all by default (e.g., LINGUAS in small packages). In any event, after some back and forth, per-arch defaults were proposed:

Code Listing 2.2: x86/amd64 defaults

ali5451 atiixp atiixp-modem cmipci emu10k1 emu10k1x ens1370 ens1371 fm801 
hda-intel intel8x0 intel8x0m maestro3 mpu401 usb-audio via82xx via82xx-modem

Code Listing 2.3: ppc defaults

aoa aoa-fabric-layout aoa-onyx aoa-soundbus aoa-soundbus-i2s aoa-tas 
aoa-toonie powermac usb-audio

Code Listing 2.4: sparc defaults

sun-amd7930 sun-cs4231 sun-dbri

udev coldplugging and /etc/init.d/modules

Sven Köhler was aggravated by the coldplugging functionality of udev-103. For years he had guaranteed the order of his interfaces by specifying the order of loading of the relevant modules in /etc/modules.autoload.d/kernel-2.?.

Stephen Bennet suggested that Sven use the MAC address of his network cards to create a udev rule to reliably name his interfaces. Sven wanted to learn more about using udev with network cards and Jean-François Gagnon Laporte directed him to the relevant portion of Daniel Drake's udev rules page.

Kernel hacker and father of udev Greg Kroah-Hartman also sprang to the defense of his brainchild. Sven would be best off using udev to specify the name of the interfaces. If he really wanted to remove udev from the equation, he could put the modules on udev's blacklist and load them by hand as he'd always done. If he were to adopt the latter course, he'd have to wait a bit as the blacklisting functionality was under repair.

3.  Tips and Tricks

An easier way to update your world

Without doubt, one of Gentoo's best features is its package management system, Portage. Portage makes it very easy to update your entire system with one simple command. Sadly, things don't always go as smooth as they should. Almost every Gentoo user has typed emerge -uD world and gone to bed with the hope of waking up in the morning to a completely up to date system. Unfortunately, it's more likely that you.ll wake up to a failed emerge on package 3 of 220. And so the troubleshoot and emerge --resume process begins.

Enter update-world to save the day. Update-world is a bash script that was recently created by count_zero and posted in the forums. The script controls the update process and forces portage to skip past failed builds and continue compiling packages until the update list is finished. Failed builds are added to a list for review once the update is finished.

Note: The script does depend on the 'equery' command, part of app-portage/gentoolkit.

Obviously before you can start using the script, you'll need to download it, put it somewhere in your path, and make it executable.

Code Listing 3.1: getting the script

# wget -O /usr/bin/update-world
# chmod +x /usr/bin/update-world

Now we're ready to start using the script.

Code Listing 3.2: running update-world

# update-world --prepare

This begins the update process by creating a list of packages to be emerged, as produced by emerge -uD --newuse world. (Alternatively, you can use update-world --empty to create a list of all packages on the system, akin to emerge -e world). This command creates a list called 'emergelist' in ~/.update-world/. Now, you can use your favorite editor to modify this list how you like--remove packages, change versions, etc. When you have the emergelist how you like it, you're ready to move onto the next step:

Code Listing 3.3: running update-world (cont)

# update-world --install

This command actually starts the build process, just as if you had typed emerge -uD world. The difference is, if a package fails for some reason or another, that package is added to a list 'failedlist' in ~/.update-world/. Also, a link to the portage log file for that package (usually located in /var/log/portage) is created in ~/.update-world/[date]/log/. Once the process is done, you'll be presented with a list of failed packages to take care of all at once, saving much time. If you ever need to stop the process, just hit 'Control-C' to abort the process. The update can then be restarted at any time, just where it left off, by retyping update-world --install.

4.  Gentoo developer moves


The following developers recently left the Gentoo project:

  • Stuart Herbert (Stuart)


The following developers recently joined the Gentoo project:

  • Alexander Gabert (pappy) Hardened team


The following developers recently changed roles within the Gentoo project:

  • none this week

5.  Gentoo security

Kile: Incorrect backup file permission

Kile uses default permissions for backup files, potentially leading to information disclosure.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

Ingo H3: Folder name shell command injection

Ingo H3 is vulnerable to arbitrary shell command execution when handling procmail rules.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

Mono: Insecure temporary file creation

Mono is vulnerable to linking attacks, potentially allowing a local user to overwrite arbitrary files.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

LHa: Multiple vulnerabilities

LHa is affected by several vulnerabilities including the remote execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

OpenLDAP: Denial of Service vulnerability

A flaw in OpenLDAP allows remote unauthenticated attackers to cause a Denial of Service.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

ProFTPD: Remote execution of arbitrary code

ProFTPD is affected by multiple vulnerabilities allowing for the remote execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

6.  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 and various developers.

Last Rites:

Package: Removal date: Contact:
app-xemacs/liece 26 Dec 06 Hans de Graaff
net-p2p/gtkhx 26 Dec 06 Steve Dibb
=net-misc/nxserver-personal-1.5* 27 Dec 06 Stuart Herbert
=net-misc/nxserver-businessl-1.5* 27 Dec 06 Stuart Herbert
=net-misc/nxserver-enterprise-1.5* 27 Dec 06 Stuart Herbert
media-video/vlms 29 Dec 06 Matthias Schwarzott
media-video/vls 29 Dec 06 Matthias Schwarzott
media-libs/libvideogfx 29 Dec 06 Matthias Schwarzott
media-video/sampeg3 29 Dec 06 Matthias Schwarzott

7.  Bugzilla



The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla ( to record and track bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the development team. Between 26 November 2006 and 03 December 2006, activity on the site has resulted in:

  • 688 new bugs during this period
  • 440 bugs closed or resolved during this period
  • 24 previously closed bugs were reopened this period
  • 171 closed as NEEDINFO/WONTFIX/CANTFIX/INVALID/UPSTREAM during this period
  • 209 bugs marked as duplicates during this period

Of the 10698 currently open bugs: 27 are labeled 'blocker', 106 are labeled 'critical', and 457 are labeled 'major'.

Closed bug rankings

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

New bug rankings

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

8.  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 and help make the GWN better.

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Page updated December 4, 2006

Summary: This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 4 December 2006.

Ulrich Plate

Chris Atkinson

John Alberts

Gareth J. Greenaway

Christel Dahlskjaer

Chris Gianelloni

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