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Gentoo Weekly Newsletter: October 24th, 2005


1.  Gentoo news

Gentoo SGI LiveCD released

Joshua Kinard released a bootable CD for Silicon Graphics machines, his fifth release candidate that builds on earlier efforts, and adds the SGI Origin (IP27) series to the list of supported hardware. This outstanding achievement -- other than IRIX installation media, this is the only bootable CD for SGI systems -- was largely built using Catalyst 2, the release engineering tool's next generation, and is again making use of Stanislaw Skowronek's ARCLoad bootloader and other tools.

Carefully check the instructions in Joshua's README to the CD image that can be found in the experimental MIPS section of Gentoo's mirrors. In particular, CDs need to be burnt with cdrecord to make sure the IRIX-like partitioned disk structure is preserved.

Gentoo Linux/MIPS 2005.1 stages for Cobalt released

More good news for MIPS users, this one for owners of Cobalt Qubes and RaQs: Stuart Longland announced that he finished building the stages for Gentoo Linux/MIPS 2005.1 installations on the popular little-endian appliances of the Cobalt Networks server series. Netboot images will be made available later, the stages can already be downloaded from Stuart's devspace before they hit the official Gentoo mirrors later this month.

2.  Heard in the community

Web forums

Openoffice 2.0 is out

Greeted by many Forums users, the stable version of OOo 2.0 has hit the Portage tree last week, mere hours after the official announcement. In the main thread, developer Andreas Proschofsky explains the benefits of compiling the package (better KDE integration, Gentoo splashscreen) and clarifies that it will not build with Java 1.5:

3.  Gentoo in the press

Information Week (17 October 2005)

In an article titled Open doors to innovation, author Larry Greenemeier of Information Week reports on small and medium-sized companies "creating IT infrastructures based on open-source software to reduce licensing fees and increase flexibility." One of the examples featuring in his concise overview of the many good uses open-source software is being put to is a company called Feedster, a blog aggregator service in San Francisco where 60 out of 75 servers run Gentoo to do the job of "pumping out the RSS feeds."

4.  Tips and tricks

Rebuilding modules after a kernel upgrade

module-rebuild is a tool written by Gentoo developer John Mylchreest that serves a very simple, but utterly useful purpose: Whenever you've upgraded your kernel to a newer version, this script hunts down all packages that use -- now outdated -- kernel modules and rebuilds them for you.

Suppose you've just booted into a freshly updated kernel. First of all, check which packages are using modules that haven't been built with the new sources yet:

Code Listing 4.1: List packages

# module-rebuild list

So, in case you've got any wireless drivers, exotic filesystems, anything else that relies on kernel modules, chances are you've just found them listed as a result of the above, and then you can rebuild them all by simply going:

Code Listing 4.2: Rebuild all affected packages

# module-rebuild rebuild

Voila. Thanks to this little routine, you don't need to keep a mental list of things to do after a kernel update any longer.

Note: Thanks to Forum user Sir No for unearthing this utility.

5.  Moves, adds, and changes


The following developers recently left the Gentoo team:

  • None this week


The following developers recently joined the Gentoo Linux team:

  • Luca Longinotti (chtekk) - Apache, webapps, PHP


The following developers recently changed roles within the Gentoo Linux project:

  • None this week

6.  Gentoo Security

Perl, Qt-UnixODBC, CMake: RUNPATH issues

Multiple packages suffer from RUNPATH issues that may allow users in the "portage" group to escalate privileges.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

Lynx: Buffer overflow in NNTP processing

Lynx contains a buffer overflow that may be exploited to execute arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

phpMyAdmin: Local file inclusion vulnerability

phpMyAdmin contains a local file inclusion vulnerability that may lead to the execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

AbiWord: New RTF import buffer overflows

AbiWord is vulnerable to an additional set of buffer overflows during RTF import, making it vulnerable to the execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

Netpbm: Buffer overflow in pnmtopng

The pnmtopng utility, part of the Netpbm tools, contains a vulnerability which can potentially result in the execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

cURL: NTLM username stack overflow

cURL is vulnerable to a buffer overflow which could lead to the execution of arbitrary code.

For more information, please see the GLSA Announcement

7.  Bugzilla



The Gentoo community uses Bugzilla ( to record and track bugs, notifications, suggestions and other interactions with the development team. Between 16 October 2005 and 23 October 2005, activity on the site has resulted in:

  • 774 new bugs during this period
  • 391 bugs closed or resolved during this period
  • 22 previously closed bugs were reopened this period

Of the 8753 currently open bugs: 108 are labeled 'blocker', 186 are labeled 'critical', and 562 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

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Page updated October 24, 2005

Summary: This is the Gentoo Weekly Newsletter for the week of 24 October 2005.

Ulrich Plate

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