When I sat down to write this blog, I thought I hadn’t got much done in February. But as it took me quite a while to write up, there must have actually been a little bit of progress. With my wife starting a new job, there have been some adjustments in family life, and I have struggled just to keep up with all the Debian and Ubuntu emails. Anyway……..
Tested Ubuntu Studio 16.02.2 point release, marked as ready, and updated the Release Notes.
Started updating my previous Gramps backport in Ubuntu to Gramps 4.2.5. The package builds fine, and I have tested that it installs and works. I just need to update the bug.
Prepared updates to the ubuntustudio-default-settings & ubuntustudio-meta packages. There were some deferred changes from before Yakkety was released, including moving the final bit of configuration left in the ubuntustudio-lightdm-theme package to ubuntustudio-default-settings. Jeremy Bicha sponsored the uploads after suggesting moving away from some transitional ttf font packages in ubuntustudio-meta.
Tested the Ubuntu Studio 17.04 First Beta release, marked as ready, and prepared the Release Notes.
Upgraded my music studio Ubuntu Studio computer to Yakkety 16.1o.
Got accepted as an Ubuntu Contributing Developer by the Developer Membership Board.
After a merge of my Family Tree with the Family Tree of my wife in Gramps a long way back, I finally started working through the database merging duplicates and correcting import errors.
Worked some more on the model railway, connecting up the other end of the tunnel section with the rest of the railway.
Plan status from last month & update for next month
For the Debian Stretch release:
Keep an eye on the Release Critical bugs list, and see if I can help fix any. – In Progress
Finish the Gramps 5.2.5 backport for Jessie. – Done
Package all the latest upstream versions of my Debian packages, and upload them to Experimental to keep them out of the way of the Stretch release.
Begin working again on all the new stuff I want packaged in Debian.
Finish the ubuntustudio-lightdm-theme, ubuntustudio-default-settings transition including an update to the ubuntustudio-meta packages. – Done
Reapply to become a Contributing Developer. – Done
Start working on an Ubuntu Studio package tracker website so that we can keep an eye on the status of the packages we are interested in. – Started
Start testing & bug triaging Ubuntu Studio packages. – In progress
Test Len’s work on ubuntustudio-controls – In progress
Do the Ubuntu Studio Zesty 17.04 Final Beta release.
Give JMRI a good try out and look at what it would take to package it. – In progress
Also look at OpenPLC for simulating the relay logic of real railway interlockings (i.e. a little bit of the day job at home involving free software – fun!). – In progress
It has been a quiet start to the year due to work keeping me very busy. Most of my spare time (when not sitting shattered on the sofa) was spent resurrecting my old website from backups. My son had plenty of visitors coming to visit as well, which prompted me to restart work on my model railway in the basement. Last year I received a whole heap of track, and also a tunnel formation from a friend at work. I managed to finish the supporting structure for the tunnel, and connect one end of it to the existing track layout. The next step (which will be a bit harder) is to connect the other end of the tunnel into the existing layout. The basement is one of the favourite things for me to keep my son and his friends occupied when there is a visit. The railway and music studio are very popular with the little guests.
Package latest abcmidi release so it too would be part of Stretch. The upstream author had changed his website, so it took a while to locate a tarball.
Tested my latest patches to convert Cree.py to Qt5, but found another Qt4 – Qt5 change to take into account (SIGNAL function). I ran out of time to fully investigate that one, before Creepy was booted out of testing again. I am seriously considering the removal of Cree.py from Debian, as the upstream maintainer does not seem very active any more, and I am a little tired of being upstream for a project that I don’t actually use myself. It was only because it was a reverse dependency of osm-gps-map that I originally got involved.
Started preparing a Gramps 5.2.5 backport for Jessie, but found that the tests I enabled in unstable were failing in the Jessie build. I need to investigate this further.
Upgraded my Ubuntu Studio machine from Wily to Xenial.
Resurrected my old Drupal Gammon One Name Study website. I used Drupal VM to get the site going again, before transferring it to the new webhost. It was originally a Drupal 7 site, and I did not have the required versions of Ansible & Vagrant on my Ubuntu Xenial machine, so the process was quite involved. I will blog about that separately, as it may be a useful lesson for others. As part of that, I started on a backport of vagrant, but found a bug which I need to follow up on.
Also managed to extract my old WordPress blog posts from the same machine that had the failed Drupal instance, and import them into this blog. I also learnt some stuff in that process that I will blog about at some point.
Plan status from last month & update for next month
Before the 5th February 2017 Debian Stretch hard freeze I hope to:
So that was 2016! Here’s a summary of what I got up to on my computer(s) in December, a check of how I went against my plan, and the TODO list for the next month or so.
With a short holiday to Oslo, Christmas holidays, Christmas parties (at work and with Alexander at school, football etc.), travelling to Brussels with work, birthdays (Alexander & Antje), I missed a lot of deadlines, and failed to reach most of my Free Software goals (including my goals for new & updated packages in Debian Stretch – the soft freeze is in a couple of days). To top it all off, I lost my grandmother at the ripe old age of 93. Rest in peace Nana. I wish I could have made it to the funeral, but it is sometimes tough living on the other side of the world to your family.
Worked on bootstrapping bluebird. Almost have it ready for sponsoring.
Prepared a new version of vmpk which I am going to adopt, as part of the libdrumstick transition. I tried splitting the documentation into a separate package, but this proved difficult, and in the end I missed the transition freeze deadline for Debian Stretch.
Prepared a backport of Gramps 4.2.4, which was sponsored by IOhannes m zmölnig as Gramps is new for jessie-backports.
Began a final push to get kosmtik packaged and into the NEW queue before the impending Debian freeze for Stretch. Unfortunately, many dependencies need updating, which also depend on packages not yet in Debian. Also pushed to finish all the new packages for node-tape, which someone else has decided to take responsibility for.
Removed node-string-decoder from the archive, as it was broken and turned out not to be needed anymore.
Uploaded a fix for node-inline-source-map which was failing tests. This turned out to be due to node-tap being upgraded to version 8.0.0. Jérémy Lal very quickly provided a fix in the form of a Pull Request upstream, so I was able to apply the same patch in Debian.
Prepared a merge of the latest blends package from Debian in order to be able to merge the multimedia-blends package later. This was sponsored by Daniel Holbach.
Prepared an application to become an Ubuntu Contributing Developer. Unfortunately, this was later declined. I was completely unprepared for the Developer Membership Board meeting on IRC after my holiday. I had had no time to chase for endorsements from previous sponsors, and the application was not really clear about the fact that I was not actually applying for upload permission yet. No matter, I intend to apply again later once I have more evidence & support on my application page.
Added my blog to Planet Ubuntu, and this will hopefully be the first post that appears there.
Prepared a merge of the latest debian-multimedia blends meta-package package from Debian. In Ubuntu Studio, we have the multimedia-puredata package seeded so that we get all the latest Puredata packages in one go. This was sponsored by Michael Terry.
Prepared a backport of Ardour as part of the Ubuntu Studio plan to do regular backports. This is still waiting for sponsorship if there is anyone reading this that can help with that.
Did a tweak to the Ubuntu Studio seeds and prepared an update of the Ubuntu Studio meta-packages. However, Adam Conrad did the work anyway as part of his cross-flavour release work without noticing my bug & request for sponsorship. So I closed the bug.
Updated the Ubuntu Studio wiki to expand on the process for updating our seeds and meta-packages. Hopefully, this will help new contributors to get involved in this area in the future.
Prepared a backport of Ansible but before I could chase up what to do about the fact that ansible-fireball was no longer part of the Ansible package, some one else did the backport without noticing my bug. So I closed the bug.
Prepared an update to the ubuntustudio-default-settings package. This switched the Ubuntu Studio desktop theme to Numix-Blue, and reverted some commits to drop the ubuntustudio-lightdm-theme package fom the archive. This had caused quite a bit of controversy and discussion on IRC due to the transition being a little too close to the release date for Yakkety. This was sponsored by Iain Lane (Laney).
Provided a patch for gfxboot-theme-ubuntu which has a bug which is regularly reported during ISO testing, because the “Try Ubuntu Studio without installing” option was not a translatable string and always appeared in English. Colin Watson merged this, so hopefully it will be translated by the time of the next release.
After a hint from Jeremy Bicha, I prepared a patch that adds a desktop file for Imagemagick to the ubuntustudio-default-settings package. This will give us a working menu item in Ubuntu Studio whilst we wait for the bug to be fixed upstream in Debian. Next month I plan to finish the ubuntustudio-lightdm-theme, ubuntustudio-default-settings transition, including dropping ubuntustudio-lightdm-theme from the Ubuntu Studio seeds. I will include this fix at the same time.
At other times when I have had a spare moment, I have been working on resurrecting my old Family History website. It was originally produced in my Windows XP days, and I was no longer able to edit it in Linux. I decided to convert it to Jekyll. First I had to extract the old HTML from where the website is hosted using the HTTrack Website Copier. Now, I am in the process of switching the structure to the standard Jekyll template approach. I will need to switch to a nice Jekyll based theme, as as the old theming was pretty complex. I pushed the code to my Github repository for safe keeping.
Plan for December
Before the 5th January 2017 Debian Stretch soft freeze I hope to:
Due to holidays in London, and planning next the next one, the 1604 Ubuntu Studio (Xenial) release, doing the documentation to become an Ubuntu Member (most of which I have separately blogged about), and a recent stretch of fantastic weather in Denmark, I have not been so productive in the last two months. But here is some of the stuff I managed to get done, or at least started on.
Dropped the redundant ubuntustudio-sounds package from ubuntustudio-look package and left for Kaj to upload. Then submitted a removal bug.
Changed the Ubuntu Studio seeds to use the new Debian Multimedia puredata metapackage, instead of having to manually add new puredata packages.
After the Xenial release, prepared the package tracker ready for Yakkety appliaction testing.
Updated the Ubuntu Studio backports list with the priority packages that we want to keep the LTS releases up to date with.
Improved the Ubuntu Studio backports wiki so that others can join in to help with the work.
Started the process to backport Ardour to Xenial and Trusty. Had to change the packaging for the Trusty backport, due to the automatic debug package migration options not being recognised in Trusty.
Uploaded the latest Gramps release (4.2.3), including providing a patch to update the appdata.xml file to the latest specification.
Continued helping to mentor Lucio Carreras with trying to package the sayonara media player application for the Debian Multimedia Team.
Sebastian Ramacher was working on an upload of the latest idjc package which needed the latest version of libshout-idjc. So I uploaded this to help out.
The was discussion (#825186) about which tasks from the Debian Multimedia blend to include in a new option in the Debian Installer. Hopefully Debian Stretch will be the first release where users can select which blends to install as part of the normal installation process.