Features Download
From: =?ISO-8859-1?Q?Ga=EBl_Duval?= <gduval <at> mandriva.com>
Subject: Cooker Weekly News - Issue 20060206
Newsgroups: gmane.linux.mandrake.cooker.devel
Date: Tuesday 7th February 2006 09:39:47 UTC (over 12 years ago)
Guys, it's been a very long time that I haven't posted anything to the 
Cooker-ML, but I hope that you'll be pleased with this one: the Cooker 
Weekly News is back thanks to Warly, Adam and Benoît. The fact that it's 
back is related to the launch of a "community-oriented" e-magazine 
(that's a "e-fanzine" in fact!), called "Mandriva Linux Inside". You'll 
find the URLs to both the e-mag PDF (which also includes the Cooker 
Weekly News) and a dedicated place on the developer-Wiki for the CWN. 
Feel free the relay the CWN and the e-mag!




	Cooker Weekly News - Issue 20060206


Welcome to the 20060206 issue of the Mandriva Linux Cooker Weekly
News! Thanks to several people, including Warly, Adam Williamson and
Benoît Audouard, the CNW is back on an extended mode: this issue

- latest news about Cooker
- a technical article
- the Cooker Mailing-list Digest

Contributions are welcome!

A dedicated place is now available with all new versions, at:

A new Mandriva Linux community e-magazine (in PDF format), called
"Mandriva Linux Inside" is now also available for download and
print. It includes the Cooker Weekly among other news and
interviews. Download the first issue at:


* New packages in Cooker

A lot of new packages have arrived into cooker since the release of
Mandriva 2006. The latest version of the popular database server
Posgresql 8.1 is replacing the version 8.0.4, with a new set of
upgrade scripts to have a cleaner update. MySQL 5.0.16 is now
available too, as well as the final version of KDE 3.5 on all the
cooker FTP mirrors. The last version of PHP, 5.1, replaces the 5.0,
but the 4.4 version, still required by a lot of third party software,
is included into the contribs. You will also be able to test the new
trac 0.9, the xmms substitutes beep-media-player and his
competitor bmpx 0.12.9. You will find as well the new IRC client xchat
2.6.0, the image-editing gimp 2.3.5, the new firewall front-end
shorewall 3.0.1, and hundreds of other new programs.

Amongst the new packages, we can notice the new motocross simulation
platform game Xmoto, and the tennis simulation Freetennis.

Lately in Cooker have been uploaded the version 6.9 of Xorg, Apache
2.2 (be careful the update may need you to check your configuration
files because some module names have changed, for example mod_access
or mod_auth), of course the latest version of Gnome 2.12, Evolution, and also Postgresql 8.1.1, xemacs 21.4.18, and a new comer,
the kernel-linux 2.6.15, which is the latest stable version of the
kernel released by Linus, without any additional patches.

A new version of Captive is also available in cooker. Captive allows
you to mount NTFS partition in read/write mode under linux. Captive is
included into the contrib section of the Mandriva mirrors.

Cooker has nearly 70 uploaded packages per day, 25 of then being new


* Mandriva in 2006: towards 2007!

Mandriva developers are still quite busy! In December, the club
members were lucky to access a new updated version of the 2006,
including all the 2006 security and bugs updates, as well as the new
version of Gnome 2.12 and OpenOffice.org 2.0. The first post 2006
cooker snapshot has also been released in December.

As far as new products are concerned, Mandriva is working on a new
version of the mobile product Globetrotter, updated to version
2006. Some rumors exist too regarding the development of a new version
of the Mandriva Move, now completely based on a USB key. This product
might be available on 1 GB or 2 GB USB, part of which will contain the
system, and the remaining available space the user data. However,
given the technical limit of USB keys regarding the number of writes
allowed, a special layout will have to be found to prevent the system
on the key to kill it too fast, most probably only relying on the
memory for most of the operations, and only saving important changes
on the key.

Hard to forecast all the news for the year 2006, of course the new
Mandriva Linux 2007, but if the development has already started, the
first beta version will not be available before June 2006. Club
members will likely be luckier with a new updated version in February
or March with KDE 3.5, and maybe a new one in June with the new
packages available, such as Gnome 2.14.

In the year 2005 were released the Limited Edition 2005, the
Globetrotter 2005 and of course the Mandriva Linux 2006. For the first
time Mandriva invested some money to launch this new 2006,
professional breakfasts, global install party, meeting with the
press. This new policy of investment is clearly noticeable in the
results for the fiscal year 2004-2005, with a growing turnover, but
less benefits compared to last year results, when the financial policy
was stricter after the chapter 11 period.

The year 2006 will be full of changes for Mandriva, changes in the the
way the distribution is created with a new build system inspired from
the Conectiva one, changes with the increasing number of contributors
and employees, such as the ones from Conectiva and Edge IT in
2005. This increase should not stop, and as the linux market is
growing, Mandriva will have to demonstrate its ability to fulfill more
and more demandfull corporate requirements, and to keep its commitment
and good image in the desktop market and its present users and


* Intel partnership

Since the Mandriva Linux 2006, Mandriva is conducting a new privileged
partnership with Intel. Intel has taken an active participation in the
launch of the 2006, and moreover the 2006 support is now clearly
included into the Intel policy, and all the new motherboards have been
certified on the Mandriva Linux 2006. Last but not least, now on the
Intel website the Mandriva support is included into the Intel


* Desktop Domination

To improve the Mandriva use on the desktop, a new brainstorming has
been launched to gather all the ideas to help Mandriva to become even
more ergonomic and efficient. The wiki page (at:
all the suggestions. We can find, amongst others, to have a better
hardware support, to be able to read DVD without extra software, to
have a working suspend mode whatever your configuration, a faster boot


* Testzilla

Testzilla, the sub part of bugzilla dedicated to tests, is still
underused. The goal of this tool is to give stricter test procedures
to users so that they can report problem or feedback to Mandriva in a
more precise and known context. Testzilla is available from the main
Bugzilla page on http://qa.mandriva.com/. Testzilla is
directly linked
with bugzilla and the hardware database, as a consequence you can
perform a test with your own configuration as parameter. Of course you
must have first to update your profile with your hardware
configuration inside testzilla. To add comments about Testzilla, if
you do not find it useful enough, you can create a bug report on the
component 'testzilla' for the product Bugzilla.


* Cooker mailing-list

Regarding the cooker mailing list, several important threads raised
various problems, the first one concerning the Mandriva kernel update
policy into cooker, as the 2.6.15 is nearly available, and cooker
still sticks to the 2.6.12. One guy switching from Mandriva to Ubuntu
created too a lot of traffic. Anyway those issues are a good thing
after a release, allowing to rethink a bit the whole thing and try to
fix what does not work correctly to start a gain on saner basis for a
new year.


* Focus on Pinit

One of Cooker's newest additions is 'pinit', the parallel
initialization system developed by community contributor
Couriousous. Parallel initialization involves starting services during
boot in parallel instead of in strict sequence, as was previously the
case. This provides an improvement in startup speeds, but is hard to
implement in a simple way while making sure initialization still works
and maintaining compatibility with existing standards. Unlike previous
implementations, pinit maintains compliance with SysV (the traditional
sequential initialization system) and is also compliant with the LSB
(Linux Standards Base) specifications for phrasing the dependencies
between services. pinit consists of a small executable named 'prcsys',
which has been added to the initscripts package. When the 'pinit'
kernel parameter is specified, prcsys controls the initialization
process and uses the LSB service dependency comments in the
initscripts of each service to determine which services can be started
in parallel. Services which have not yet been updated to include this
information are initialized in the same place during the sequence as
they would have been under the old system, to maintain SysV
compliance. Since the new system requires only additional comments in
the initscript, if it is disabled, initialization proceeds as normal
under the old system.

Deeper into Pinit!

Under Mandriva Linux the boot system is based on a System V like
initialisation. The boot is handled by a set of scripts, usually
called 'initscripts'. The main boot scripts are located into the
directory /etc/rc.d/, rc.sysinit, being the first script launched by
the init process at the boot of the machine. This script is performing
quite a lot of actions, it initialises the fonts, mounts the root
partition, runs udev, checks the filesystems and then mounts them,
and, if needed, configures the RAID or LVM devices. Then init runs the
script rc, which is more or less a scheduler which launches all the
other initialisation scripts which are located into the directory

To be more precise, the directories /etc/rc.d/rcX.d where X is the
desired runlevel (0 to 6), hold symbolic links to the scripts which
are in the directory /etc/init.d to select, depending of the runlevel,
what should be run and what should be stopped (with a command like
service service_name start/stop). With the current system, each
symbolic link in, say, /etc/rc.d/rc3.d/, includes a letter, S for
start and K for kill, followed by a number between 00 and 99, and, at
the end, the name of the initscript. With this structure, the links
included into the directory /etc/rc.d/rc3.d/ are sorted in order,
first the KXXinitscript_name, then SXXinitscript_name, for example :


In this example, the scripts dm, psacct will be successively stopped,
then the services iptables, acpi, dkms, harddrake and network will be
launched. Up to now the launching of the scripts was sequential, rc
waiting for the dkms script to finish before launching the script
harddrake. However, most of the time, a lot of things could be done in
parallel, and allow to gain some precious seconds during the boot

A Mandriva contributor, Philippe Rétornaz, more known as Couriousous,
has developed a program, Pinit, which allows, if an extra dependencies
information is included into the initscripts headers, to calculate a
scripts layout to be able to launch simultaneously all the scripts
which are not relying on other scripts to run, and to run the other
ones as soon as the scripts they are relying on are finished. The
improvement in the boot time is very dependent of your configuration,
but usually noticeable, several seconds, even up to 20 or 30
percent. To compare precisely the variation in the boot time, you can
use the program called bootchart. This program is available in the
package named bootchart, in contrib. It is simply launched when you
boot, giving init=bootchartd as kernel parameter, then a java program
is able to use the data logged in /var/log/bootchart.tgz to create a
boot chart of the full boot process. For more information, you can
consult the online help on: http://www.bootchart.org or on:

The Mandriva Community Wiki is also holding a section dedicated to the
parallel boot: http://qa.mandriva.com/twiki/bin/view/Main/Pinit


Cooker ML Digest for January 2006

- USB keys become root-read-only ?

The first (?) discussion [1] about USB keys appeared in November, soon
followed [2] by bug 19667 for NTFS USB Key mounted as root
readonly. It appears again in January [3] USB key mounted
automatically but with wrong permissions and for another user as well
[4] leading to bugs 20379 & 20496 [5] & [6]. A user asks [7] whether
root will remain or will it go back to mounted as user one day? A
short answer [8] by Andrey Borzenkov : "Well, as it stands now, it is
likely to remain broken for some time." and possible solutions involve
KDE/Gnome + HAL and D-bus. Dick Gevers proposes [9] to add ivman as a
service with chkconfig (tested with Gnome)

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2005-11/msg00677.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2005-11/msg00766.php
[3] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00205.php
[4] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01801.php
[5] http://qa.mandriva.com/show_bug.cgi?id=20379
[6] http://qa.mandriva.com/show_bug.cgi?id=20496
[7] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01791.php
[8] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01816.php
[9] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01833.php

- One idea to improve installation...

A user suggests to download available updates BEFORE the packages
installation [1]: it should have made its way to
IdeasForMandrivaLinux2007. Even though it received the classical
objections of chicken and egg problem (with internet connection
necessary when installing). Authentication is another thing as well to
take into account. It is suggested as well more interesting
documentation to read while installing or even a game (frozen bubble

Well anyone interested in these features ? Then enter the bug and
update the wiki page [2] by linking to the thread, then bring new pros
against cons so that it is made real !

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01648.php
[2] http://qa.mandriva.com/twiki/bin/view/Main/IdeasForMandrivaLinux2007

- Many mailing-list problems...

People get unsubscribed possibly because a too strict policy is
applied to the list : multiple mail server, multiple sympa servers,
mail silently ignored, silent unsubscribe at first mail error. Some
humour and answers [1] at first then a test leading to a long thread
[2] but at the beginning of the year [3], no real solution identified

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00925.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00890.php
[3] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00673.php

- Miscellaneous

Some people overlook or forget [1] that there is no "updates media"
for packages in cooker: main / contrib receive directly new packages.

Maybe gnash can be a free replacement for Flashplayer ? Based on
swfGames, provides plugin and application to run flash documents.

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01578.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01201.php

Wine suffers too from WMF (proprietary data format for videos)
security hole (patch provided), it's suggested that wine be moved to
contrib to benefit from versions upgrades instead of security-updates
only, which is not accepted. Then comes a discussion of how wine has
become now suficiently mature to be easy to use, even for newbies.

[3] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01230.php

Hibernate could be used for laptops' suspend mode [1]:
gnome-power-manager uses HAL that calls the helpers coherently
(/usr/sbin/hal-system-power-*) , this framework is suficiently good
that it should be supported, hibernate being one example. Another
thread [2] goes in deep detail about modular IDE and
hibernation/resume, giving a how-to initiate/resume manually easily
(with echo -n 3:2 > /sys/power/resume). Backports for KDE are
identified as necessary [3] and may be done to get suspend/resume to
work correctly.

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01219.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00665.php
[3] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00853.php

AMD K6-2 processors still suffer in 2006.1 from choices of compilation
optimisations [1], a faulty package should be identified and bug
reported upstream to be taken into account by developers (rather than
only by packagers). Austin Acton ends up proposing solution once
discussion has calmed down a little : make a policy that people agree
with and a proposal is made to identify packages with mmx-processor
for example. Michael Scherer finds the same issue raised on fedora [2]
and rhl [3] mailing-list. Gwenole Beauchesne reminds that you can
build i686+sse binaries but place them in */lib/sse/. If you use
i686(w/cmov)+mmx, place them in */lib/i686/mmx. etc.

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00061.php
[2] http://www.redhat.com/archives/rpm-list/2002-May/msg00257.html

Parallel init - also called Pinit - may bring some more improvements
in the boot process [1], thanks to the fact that most of the
initscripts containing parallel initialization headers have been
converted [2] to use LSB headers (see [3] Linux Standard Base

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00000.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01073.php
[3] http://www.linuxbase.org/spec/

Shorewall is polluting syslog, making it unusable and a user wonders
[1] if shorewall could have it's own logfile? Then a bug is identified
[2] in shorewall setup through drakfirewall (should make its way in
2007 enhancements). Two enhancements are proposed [3] so that when you
switch between profiles (which means you change from one network setup
to another), so your firewall configuration and proxy settings
probably change too : the proposal is to add /etc/shorewall/* and
/etc/urpmi/proxy.cfg to the file /etc/network/list by default.

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01327.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00915.php
[3] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg01022.php

An initial question [1] about purpose of /incoming, then unmaintained
packages, leads to a question about the life-cycle of packages and how
one can adopt [2] a package whose maintainer has not time to keep it
up to date.

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00995.php
[2] http://qa.mandriva.com/twiki/bin/view/Main/ContributerHowto

Mozilla firefox 1.5 and dependencies : It usually takes a week to
rebuild all packages requiring it, as there are many dependancies and
it may break many things [1]. To get an evaluation of it, just run
urpmf --requires firefox | sed 's/:.*/ /'| grep -v mozilla-firefox |wc
-l # to list / count the number of packages currently depending on

For example [2], avidemux needs in fact Spidermonkey javascript engine
from mozilla, which is found in Firefox packages : Isn't it possible
to make a real library based install ? It didn't worked, or it wasn't
maintainable as is confirmed by Frederic Crozat [3] who takes the
opportunity to remind [4] that using bugzilla is easier to track bugs
encountered on the latest firefox 1.5 package.

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00876.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00965.php
[3] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00971.php
[4] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00942.php

Some tips [1] to add device types to diskdrake, with some programming
in detect_devices.pm, devices.pm & partition_table.pm

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00653.php

SElinux support is dropped by Mandriva [1]: rsbac is preferred as it
does not requires changes to userland stuff and requires less work
than SElinux to work out of the box ndiswrapper userspace package [2]
can only be updated in sync with the kernel, as the kernel module is
packaged in the kernel package and the version of the module has to
match the version of the userspace tools.

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00906.php
[2] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00604.php

Some intricacies of rpmsync are explained to prevent local-mirroring
of debug packages.  The solution is:
  rpmsync --exclude-from=/path/to/filename
(because the script changes directories, you should give an absolute
path to the exclude.lst file just to be safe).

[1] http://archives.mandrivalinux.com/cooker/2006-01/msg00724.php
CD: 3ms