Let's port together. Debian fun for everyone
Over the past year, a major concern in Debian has been the strength and viability of our various ports. Reactions to the controversial Vancouver proposal show that each of our ports are important to one set of developers or another, and yet in many ways they remain perpetually under-staffed. Debian seems to be very good at bootstrapping ports, but not as good at sustaining them in the long term.
In order to address this problem we will first explain how modern system architectures look like and what implications the architecture choices have on the software side of things. Architecture differences like endianess, alignment requirements, cache coherency, out of order execution and representation of standard C types and their impact on portability will be discussed as well as strategies for avoiding or working around these problems.
We will continue the workshop by giving practical advice on how to deal with build failures of a package, from identifying that a package has failed, to analyzing a number of common build failures, to submitting patches as needed.
The workshop is targetted at both would-be porters who want to help their favorite port, and at package maintainers who want to be more in control of their packages' releasability. It will include guided, hands-on practice in fixing release-critical porting bugs in packages.
Peter De Schrijver