Back from the Debian QA meeting in Extremadura

I’ve spent the last few days in Badajoz for the Debian QA meeting in Extremadura. It was my first Debian event, and it was really nice to finally meet all those developers I only knew over the Internet until then. The organisation was very good in general, and César Gómez really deserves kudos and some rest now :-)

In addition to the usual mail processing, I worked on a few things:

  • I processed some logs from a rebuilt of all packages in etch and filed about 20 RC bugs about FTBFS. I also did several libpng-related rebuilds, checking that etch packages that b-dep on it still build with the proposed new version. And I investigated a few bugs.
  • I also worked on a dirty script to generate the List of packages with problems wrt release (packages in etch with RC bugs, or packages in unstable but not in testing). See the list sorted by maintainer, and the list sorted by popcon score. Despite the unavoidable high number of false positives, I think that some maintainers were actually unaware of the status of their packages, so the list was probably useful.
  • I gave a talk about Collaborative QA. The idea is try to move from the current non-organisation (QA one by a bored developer, on his own, because the release is approaching) to a more organized structure (team ?), allowing to share the load and share information (blacklists, false positives lists, processes, etc). I’m not sure yet if this will work, because many people consider that the current way of working on QA is OK, but I’ve created the collab-qa alioth project, and will try to use it to store information about my archive rebuilds. More to come about this later.

In general, I was pleasantly surprised by the fact that all DDs there were very friendly, welcoming, etc. Quite different from the picture of the Debian project one can easily get by looking at the mailing list. It was really nice to have so many interesting discussions with interesting people.

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