Ubuntu 11.10 Development update

Ubuntu Development Update

We are racing towards the release of 11.10, and it’s only four weeks until we’re there. If you like partying, start organising your local release party!

This is the busiest time for Ubuntu developers and everybody’s trying to fix all the remaining bugs they run in. Some spend 24/7 trying to get packages to build again, bugs ironed out, bugs triaged, packages translated and documentation updated. It’s crazy, but it’s also good fun.

So there’s four weeks left, what’s going to happen in those weeks? Kate reminded us that Beta 2 freeze will happen today and with that the kernel and the documentation text will be frozen. Next week we’ll have a brand-new Beta 2 to get our hands on. So if you haven’t tried Oneiric yet: test Oneiric and file bugs. This is an excellent way to help out and make sure that 11.10 is in tip-top shape.

Colin Watson sent out a request for help to get the list of packages that fail to build from source under control. The good news is: in less than 72 hours we managed to get the number of failures from 661 to 401, but the bad news is, there’s still 401 packages to fix. The remaining build failures are harder to sort out, so if you have dealt with lots of compilation/linker/etc. errors, read Colin’s mail and see if you can help out.

There’s still a number of bugs on the radar for Beta 2, but most of them are assigned already, so we’re well on track. If you’re interested in any other aspect of Ubuntu Oneiric, I’d refer you to the oneiric-changes mailing list and the big picture specification status overview instead.

Events

Ubuntu App Developer Week

We covered it last week already, so here’s the complete summaries and links to logs of the best event for Ubuntu App Developers: Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, Day 4, Day 5. Thanks a lot for putting this together!

Ubuntu Release Parties
We’re still looking for people who can organise Ubuntu release parties! The Ubuntu Oneiric 11.10 release will get out on 13th October. Why don’t have a release party? Here’s how to organise it and here’s how to register it. There’s 16 events listed right now, these cities are participating:

  • Asia: Bangkok (Thailand), Khon Kaen (Thailand)
  • Africa: Capetown (South Africa)
  • Australia/Oceania: Sydney (Australia)
  • Europe: Hradec Králové (Czech Republic), Dublin (Ireland), Belgrade (Serbia), Lloret de Mar (Spain), London (UK), Blackpool (UK)
  • North America: Kitchener (Canada), Toronto (Canada), Mexico (Mexico), SeaTac (USA), Lakeland (USA), Melbourne/Viera (USA)

Things that still need to get done

If you want to get involved in packaging and bug fixing, there’s still a lot of bugs that need to get fixed:

First timers!

It seems like the release hectic attracts loads of new people. That’s awesome! Thanks everyone for helping out and making the world a better place! Here’s the list of folks who got involved last week: Roman Yepishev and Michael van der Kolff. Also special thanks to Christoph Schmidt-HieberThomas Preud’homme and Florian Schlichting who helped getting their fixes from Debian into Ubuntu. Well done everyone!

New Contributor

I had a chat with Ben Tucker from the USA.

Ben TuckerDoing the bug fix was really thrilling, even though it was a very minor “bug”, really all I did was update a package’s description to put the contained URL as a link instead of plain text. I’ve been using Ubuntu as my only OS for around 2 years now, and finally giving back to the project and making it better was an awesome feeling.

The documentation on bug fixing was very concise on what to do, reducing it to an easy step-by-step process. Once I did push the change to Launchpad, the reviewer was very helpful and patient even though I was still very new with the whole process.
The whole experience was definitely worth the time it took to read through all the documentation and get the tools installed and running. I am now eager to do another bug fix, and I’m still hunting for a bug at my level. I do program as a hobby, but not in C, so some of the code can be a little intimidating.
As I said, I have been using Ubuntu as my sole OS for the past 2 years. I use it for school work (I’m starting high school this year) and for programming in Haskell, and for both it works great. I am hoping to do more bug fixes, and maybe even something beyond that in the future. Unity, for example, still needs a lot of work and a lot of love put into it, and I’m hoping to help with that to make it great.
One of my favorite things about the free, open source nature of projects such as Ubuntu is that if there’s something you don’t like about the OS or something that you think is missing, then you can fix it now, you don’t have to wait for some big corporation to think of it and then fix it several months later. The project has a much closer, more intimate tie to its user base and what they want from it. Getting started in Ubuntu development/bug fixing is the first step towards helping make it an even better OS than it is now.

Get Involved

  1. Read the Introduction to Ubuntu Development. It’s a short article which will help you understand how Ubuntu is put together, how the infrastructure is used and how we interact with other projects.
  2. Follow the instructions in the Getting Set Up article. A few simple commands, a registration at Launchpad and you should have all the tools you need, and you’re ready to go.
  3. Check out our instructions for how to fix a bug in Ubuntu, they come with small examples that make it easier to visualise what exactly you need to do.

Find something to work on

Pick a bitesize bug. These are the bugs we think should be easy to fix. Another option is to help out in one of our initiatives.

In addition to that there are loads more opportunities over at Harvest.

Getting in touch

There are many different ways to contact Ubuntu developers and get your questions answered.

  • Be interactive and reach us most immediately: talk to us in #ubuntu-motu on irc.freenode.net.
  • Follow mailing lists and get involved in the discussions: ubuntu-devel-announce (announce only, low traffic), ubuntu-devel (high-level discussions), ubuntu-devel-discuss (fairly general developer discussions).
  • Stay up to date and follow the ubuntudev account on Facebook, Identi.ca or Twitter.

One Response to “Ubuntu 11.10 Development update”

  1. David Says:

    How to Install Cyn.in on ubuntu desktop 11.10 ?

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