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12 <title>GLEP 42 -- Critical News Reporting</title>
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31 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">GLEP:</th><td class="field-body">42</td>
32 </tr>
33 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Title:</th><td class="field-body">Critical News Reporting</td>
34 </tr>
35 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Version:</th><td class="field-body">1.7</td>
36 </tr>
37 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Author:</th><td class="field-body">Ciaran McCreesh &lt;ciaranm&#32;&#97;t&#32;gentoo.org&gt;</td>
38 </tr>
39 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Last-Modified:</th><td class="field-body"><a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/cgi-bin/viewcvs.cgi/xml/htdocs/proj/en/glep/glep-0042.txt?cvsroot=gentoo">2006/01/05 15:10:45</a></td>
40 </tr>
41 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Status:</th><td class="field-body">Draft</td>
42 </tr>
43 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Type:</th><td class="field-body">Standards Track</td>
44 </tr>
45 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Content-Type:</th><td class="field-body"><a class="reference" href="glep-0002.html">text/x-rst</a></td>
46 </tr>
47 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Created:</th><td class="field-body">31-Oct-2005</td>
48 </tr>
49 <tr class="field"><th class="field-name">Post-History:</th><td class="field-body">1-Nov-2005, 5-Nov-2005, 7-Nov-2005, 11-Dec-2005, 13-Dec-2005, 18-Dec-2005, 5-Jan-2006</td>
50 </tr>
51 </tbody>
52 </table>
53 <hr />
54 <div class="contents topic">
55 <p class="topic-title first"><a id="contents" name="contents">Contents</a></p>
56 <ul class="simple">
57 <li><a class="reference" href="#abstract" id="id20" name="id20">Abstract</a></li>
58 <li><a class="reference" href="#motivation" id="id21" name="id21">Motivation</a></li>
59 <li><a class="reference" href="#requirements" id="id22" name="id22">Requirements</a></li>
60 <li><a class="reference" href="#specification" id="id23" name="id23">Specification</a><ul>
61 <li><a class="reference" href="#overview" id="id24" name="id24">Overview</a></li>
62 <li><a class="reference" href="#required-portage-enhancements" id="id25" name="id25">Required Portage Enhancements</a></li>
63 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-identities" id="id26" name="id26">News Item Identities</a></li>
64 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-directories" id="id27" name="id27">News Item Directories</a></li>
65 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-files" id="id28" name="id28">News Item Files</a><ul>
66 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-headers" id="id29" name="id29">News Item Headers</a></li>
67 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-body" id="id30" name="id30">News Item Body</a></li>
68 <li><a class="reference" href="#example-news-item" id="id31" name="id31">Example News Item</a></li>
69 </ul>
70 </li>
71 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-quality-control" id="id32" name="id32">News Item Quality Control</a></li>
72 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-distribution" id="id33" name="id33">News Item Distribution</a><ul>
73 <li><a class="reference" href="#server-side" id="id34" name="id34">Server Side</a></li>
74 <li><a class="reference" href="#client-side" id="id35" name="id35">Client Side</a></li>
75 </ul>
76 </li>
77 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-clients" id="id36" name="id36">News Item Clients</a></li>
78 <li><a class="reference" href="#news-item-removal" id="id37" name="id37">News Item Removal</a></li>
79 </ul>
80 </li>
81 <li><a class="reference" href="#integration-with-existing-systems" id="id38" name="id38">Integration with Existing Systems</a></li>
82 <li><a class="reference" href="#backwards-compatibility" id="id39" name="id39">Backwards Compatibility</a></li>
83 <li><a class="reference" href="#reference-implementation" id="id40" name="id40">Reference Implementation</a><ul>
84 <li><a class="reference" href="#portage-code" id="id41" name="id41">Portage Code</a></li>
85 <li><a class="reference" href="#simple-eselect-news-client" id="id42" name="id42">Simple <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">eselect</span></tt> News Client</a></li>
86 <li><a class="reference" href="#simple-news-to-mail-forwarder" id="id43" name="id43">Simple News to Mail Forwarder</a></li>
87 </ul>
88 </li>
89 <li><a class="reference" href="#credits" id="id44" name="id44">Credits</a></li>
90 <li><a class="reference" href="#example-files" id="id45" name="id45">Example Files</a></li>
91 <li><a class="reference" href="#references" id="id46" name="id46">References</a></li>
92 <li><a class="reference" href="#copyright" id="id47" name="id47">Copyright</a></li>
93 </ul>
94 </div>
95 <div class="section">
96 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id20" id="abstract" name="abstract">Abstract</a></h1>
97 <p>This GLEP proposes a new way of informing users about important updates and news
98 regarding tree-related items.</p>
99 </div>
100 <div class="section">
101 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id21" id="motivation" name="motivation">Motivation</a></h1>
102 <p>Although most package updates are clean and require little user action,
103 occasionally an upgrade requires user intervention during the upgrade process.
104 Recent examples of the latter include the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gcc-3.4</span></tt> stabilisation on <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">x86</span></tt>
105 and the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">mysql-4.1</span></tt> database format changes.</p>
106 <p>There are currently several ways of delivering important news items to our
107 users, none of them particularly effective:</p>
108 <ul class="simple">
109 <li>Gentoo Weekly News</li>
110 <li>The <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gentoo-announce</span></tt>, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gentoo-user</span></tt> and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gentoo-dev</span></tt> mailing lists</li>
111 <li>The Gentoo Forums</li>
112 <li>The main Gentoo website</li>
113 <li>RSS feeds of Gentoo news</li>
114 <li><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">einfo</span></tt> and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">ewarn</span></tt> messages in <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pkg_setup</span></tt> or <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pkg_postinst</span></tt></li>
115 </ul>
116 <p>A more reliable way of getting news of critical updates out to users is required
117 to avoid repeats of the various recent upgrade debacles. This GLEP proposes a
118 solution based around pushing news items out to the user via the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">rsync</span></tt> tree.</p>
119 <div class="important">
120 <p class="first admonition-title">Important</p>
121 <p class="last">This GLEP does not seek to replace or modify <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">einfo</span></tt> messages
122 which are displayed post-install. That is a separate issue which is handled
123 by <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">elog</span></tt> <a class="footnote-reference" href="#bug-11359" id="id1" name="id1">[1]</a>.</p>
124 </div>
125 </div>
126 <div class="section">
127 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id22" id="requirements" name="requirements">Requirements</a></h1>
128 <p>An adequate solution must meet all of the following requirements:</p>
129 <dl class="docutils">
130 <dt>Preemptive</dt>
131 <dd>Users should be told of changes <em>before</em> they break a system, not after the
132 damage has already been done. Ideally, the system administrator would be
133 given ample warning to plan difficult upgrades and changes, rather than only
134 being told just before action is necessary.</dd>
135 <dt>No user subscription required</dt>
136 <dd>It has already been demonstrated <a class="footnote-reference" href="#forums-apache2" id="id2" name="id2">[5]</a> that many users do not
137 read the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gentoo-announce</span></tt> mailing list or <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">RSS</span></tt> feeds. A solution which
138 requires subscription has no advantage over current methods.</dd>
139 <dt>No user monitoring required</dt>
140 <dd>It has already been demonstrated <a class="footnote-reference" href="#forums-apache2" id="id3" name="id3">[5]</a> that many users do not
141 read news items posted to the Gentoo website, or do not read news items
142 until it is too late. A solution that relies upon active monitoring of a
143 particular source has no advantage over current methods.</dd>
144 <dt>Relevant</dt>
145 <dd>System administrators who do not use a particular package should not have to
146 read news items which affect purely that package. Some news items may be of
147 relevance to most or all users, but those that are not should not be forced
148 upon users unnecessarily.</dd>
149 <dt>Lightweight</dt>
150 <dd>It is not reasonable to expect all users to have an MTA, web browser, email
151 client, cron daemon or text processing suite available on their system.
152 Users must not be forced to install unreasonable extra software to be able
153 to read news items.</dd>
154 <dt>No privacy violations</dt>
155 <dd>Users of the solution should not be required to provide information about
156 their systems (for example, IP addresses or installed packages).</dd>
157 <dt>Multiple delivery method support</dt>
158 <dd>Some users may wish to view news items via email, some via a terminal and
159 some via a web browser. A solution should either support all of these
160 methods or (better still) make it simple to write clients for displaying
161 news items in different ways.</dd>
162 </dl>
163 <p>The following characteristics would be desirable:</p>
164 <dl class="docutils">
165 <dt>Internationalisable</dt>
166 <dd>Being able to provide messages in multiple languages may be beneficial.</dd>
167 <dt>Quality control</dt>
168 <dd>There should be some way to ensure that badly written or irrelevant messages
169 are not sent out, for example by inexperienced developers or those whose
170 English language skills are below par.</dd>
171 <dt>Simple for developers</dt>
172 <dd>Posting news items should be as simple as is reasonably possible.</dd>
173 <dt>Simple for users</dt>
174 <dd>Reading relevant news items should be as simple as is reasonably possible.</dd>
175 <dt>Compatibility with existing and future news sources</dt>
176 <dd>A news system would ideally be able to be integrated with existing news
177 sources (for example, Forums, GWN, the main Gentoo website) without
178 excessive difficulty. Similarly, easy interoperation with any future news
179 sources should not be precluded.</dd>
180 </dl>
181 </div>
182 <div class="section">
183 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id23" id="specification" name="specification">Specification</a></h1>
184 <div class="section">
185 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id24" id="overview" name="overview">Overview</a></h2>
186 <p>News items are published and delivered to users as follows:</p>
187 <ol class="arabic simple">
188 <li>A news item is written. The format to be used is described below.</li>
189 <li>The news item is reviewed, following the process described in
190 <a class="reference" href="#news-item-quality-control">News Item Quality Control</a>.</li>
191 <li>The news item is committed to a CVS (or Subversion <a class="footnote-reference" href="#glep-36" id="id4" name="id4">[9]</a>) repository.
192 From here, it is merged with the rsync tree. This is described in <a class="reference" href="#news-item-distribution">News Item
193 Distribution</a>.</li>
194 <li>Users fetch the news item when they sync. This ensures that the news items in
195 question are pushed to the user before the user accidentally makes an
196 unwanted change. No changes to the existing rsync process are required by
197 this GLEP.</li>
198 <li>The package manager filters the news item and, if it is relevant, marks the
199 news item for reading. The package manager should also display a notice
200 informing the user that there are unread news items.</li>
201 <li>The news item is handled by the user's choice of news item reader. See <a class="reference" href="#news-item-clients">News
202 Item Clients</a>.</li>
203 </ol>
204 </div>
205 <div class="section">
206 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id25" id="required-portage-enhancements" name="required-portage-enhancements">Required Portage Enhancements</a></h2>
207 <p>The following extensions to Portage are required:</p>
208 <ul class="simple">
209 <li>Every repository (including overlays) will require a unique identifier. It is
210 assumed that an identifier will be a string consisting of characters from
211 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">a</span></tt> to <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">z</span></tt>, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">A</span></tt> to <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Z</span></tt>, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">0</span></tt> to <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">9</span></tt>, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">+</span></tt> (plus), <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">-</span></tt> (hyphen)
212 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">_</span></tt> (underscore).</li>
213 <li>Portage must provide a way for external programs to obtain a list of all
214 repository identifiers for a given system. It is assumed that this will be in
215 the form of a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portageq</span></tt> command (e.g. <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portageq</span> <span class="pre">get_repo_ids</span></tt>).</li>
216 <li>Portage must provide a way for external programs to obtain the base path for
217 a repository with a given ID. It is assumed that this will be in the form of
218 a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portageq</span></tt> command (e.g. <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portageq</span> <span class="pre">get_repo_root</span> <span class="pre">gentoo-x86</span></tt>).</li>
219 <li>Portage must extend <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portageq</span> <span class="pre">has_version</span></tt> to support restrictions to a
220 given repository ID.</li>
221 <li>Portage must extend <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portageq</span></tt> to implement a command which returns whether
222 or not the profile used for a given repository ID matches a certain base path
223 (e.g. <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portageq</span> <span class="pre">profile_used</span> <span class="pre">default-linux/sparc/sparc64/2004.3</span> <span class="pre">gentoo-x86</span></tt>).</li>
224 </ul>
225 <p>These extensions are assumed during the following specification.</p>
226 </div>
227 <div class="section">
228 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id26" id="news-item-identities" name="news-item-identities">News Item Identities</a></h2>
229 <p>Each news item will have a unique identifier. This identifier will be in the
230 form <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy-mm-dd-short-name</span></tt>, where <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy</span></tt> is the year (e.g. <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">2005</span></tt>),
231 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">mm</span></tt> is the month (<tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">01</span></tt> through <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">12</span></tt>) and dd is the day of the month
232 (<tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">01</span></tt> through <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">31</span></tt>). The <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">short-name</span></tt> is a very short name describing the
233 news item (e.g. <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yoursql-updates</span></tt>), consisting only of the characters <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">a-z</span></tt>,
234 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">0-9</span></tt>, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">+</span></tt> (plus), <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">-</span></tt> (hyphen) and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">_</span></tt> (underscore).</p>
235 </div>
236 <div class="section">
237 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id27" id="news-item-directories" name="news-item-directories">News Item Directories</a></h2>
238 <p>Each news item will be represented by a directory whose name is the same as the
239 news item's identifier.</p>
240 <p>The directory will contain a file named <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy-mm-dd-short-name.en.txt</span></tt>, which
241 contains the text of the news item, in English, in the format described below.</p>
242 <p>If a news item is translated, other files named <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy-mm-dd-short-name.xx.txt</span></tt>
243 (where <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">xx</span></tt> is the ISO 639 <a class="footnote-reference" href="#iso-639" id="id5" name="id5">[11]</a> two letter country code) will also be
244 provided. However, only the English version of a news item is authoritative.
245 This anglocentricity is justified by precedent <a class="footnote-reference" href="#glep-34" id="id6" name="id6">[8]</a>.</p>
246 </div>
247 <div class="section">
248 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id28" id="news-item-files" name="news-item-files">News Item Files</a></h2>
249 <p>A news item file is a text file, encoded using UTF-8 <a class="footnote-reference" href="#rfc-3629" id="id7" name="id7">[14]</a> for
250 compatibility with and for the same reasons as existing Gentoo documentation
251 <a class="footnote-reference" href="#docs-policy" id="id8" name="id8">[2]</a> and the tree <a class="footnote-reference" href="#glep-31" id="id9" name="id9">[7]</a>.</p>
252 <p>News items must be signed with a detached GPG signature.:</p>
253 <pre class="literal-block">
254 gpg --armour --detach-sign ????-??-??-*.??.txt
255 </pre>
256 <p>This GLEP does not specify the type or strength of signature to be used, nor
257 does it discuss how, if at all, a centralised keychain will be provided. These
258 issues should be handled as part of the signing policy discussions.</p>
259 <p>A news item file's content will consist of an <a class="reference" href="http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc822.html">RFC 822</a> style header <a class="footnote-reference" href="#rfc-822" id="id10" name="id10">[13]</a>
260 followed by the main body of the message as plain text. This GLEP defines
261 various optional and mandatory headers. Future GLEPs may propose new headers —
262 tools handling these news items must ignore any unrecognised header.</p>
263 <div class="section">
264 <h3><a class="toc-backref" href="#id29" id="news-item-headers" name="news-item-headers">News Item Headers</a></h3>
265 <p>The following headers describe the purpose and format of the news item:</p>
266 <dl class="docutils">
267 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Title:</span></tt></dt>
268 <dd>A short (maximum 44 characters) descriptive title. Mandatory.</dd>
269 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Author:</span></tt></dt>
270 <dd>Author's name and email address, in the form <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Real</span> <span class="pre">Name</span> <span class="pre">&lt;email&#64;address&gt;</span></tt>.
271 Mandatory; multiple author headers may be specified if appropriate.</dd>
272 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Translator:</span></tt></dt>
273 <dd>For translated news items, the translator's name and email address. Multiple
274 translator headers may be specified if appropriate.</dd>
275 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Content-Type:</span></tt></dt>
276 <dd>Must be <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">text/plain</span></tt>. Mandatory.</dd>
277 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Posted:</span></tt></dt>
278 <dd>Date of posting, in <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy-mm-dd</span></tt> format (e.g. 2005-12-18) for
279 compatibility with GLEP 45 <a class="footnote-reference" href="#glep-45" id="id11" name="id11">[10]</a>. Mandatory.</dd>
280 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Revision:</span></tt></dt>
281 <dd>Initially 1. Should be incremented every time a change is made to the news
282 item. Changes that require a re-read of the news item (i.e., most changes
283 that are not spelling or formatting related) should instead use a new news
284 item. Mandatory.</dd>
285 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">News-Item-Format:</span></tt></dt>
286 <dd>Must be <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">1.0</span></tt>. Future revisions to the format may increment the minor
287 number for backwards-compatible changes, or the major number for major
288 changes.</dd>
289 </dl>
290 <p>The following headers are used for filtering:</p>
291 <dl class="docutils">
292 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Display-If-Installed:</span></tt></dt>
293 <dd>A dependency atom (for example, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">&lt;dev-lang/php-5_alpha</span></tt> or
294 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">net-www/apache</span></tt>). If the user has the package specified installed from
295 the repository from which the news item was obtained, the news item should
296 be displayed.</dd>
297 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Display-If-Keyword:</span></tt></dt>
298 <dd>A keyword <a class="footnote-reference" href="#glep-22" id="id12" name="id12">[6]</a> name, for example <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">mips</span></tt> or <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">x86-fbsd</span></tt>. If the
299 user is on the keyword in question, the news item should be displayed.</dd>
300 <dt><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Display-If-Profile:</span></tt></dt>
301 <dd>A profile path, for example <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">default-linux/sparc/sparc64/server</span></tt>. If the
302 user is using the exact profile in question, or a subprofile of this
303 profile, the news item should be displayed. This header may be used to
304 replace <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">deprecated</span></tt> files in the future.</dd>
305 </dl>
306 <div class="note">
307 <p class="first admonition-title">Note</p>
308 <p class="last">When performing package moves, developers must also update any
309 relevant <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Display-If-Installed</span></tt> headers in news files.</p>
310 </div>
311 <p>The algorithm used to determine whether a news item is 'relevant' is as
312 follows:</p>
313 <ul class="simple">
314 <li>For each <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Display-If-</span></tt> header type which occurs at least once:<ul>
315 <li>The news item is not relevant if none of the headers of this type are
316 successfully matched.</li>
317 </ul>
318 </li>
319 <li>Otherwise the news item is relevant.</li>
320 </ul>
321 <p>In particular, if no <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Display-If-</span></tt> header is specified, a news item will be
322 relevant for all users.</p>
323 <p>This algorithm was chosen because it makes conditions like &quot;display this news
324 item for <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">YourSQL</span></tt> users who are on <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">sparc</span></tt> or <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">x86-obsd</span></tt> relatively
325 simple to specify — it is believed that these kinds of condition are far more
326 likely to occur than &quot;display this news item for people using <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">YourSQL</span></tt>, or
327 for people on <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">sparc</span></tt> or <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">x86-obsd</span></tt>&quot; or &quot;display these news items for
328 people who use <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">YourSQL</span></tt> and who are on both <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">sparc</span></tt> and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">x86-obsd</span></tt>&quot;.</p>
329 </div>
330 <div class="section">
331 <h3><a class="toc-backref" href="#id30" id="news-item-body" name="news-item-body">News Item Body</a></h3>
332 <p>The header section must be followed by a blank line, then the main body of the
333 text.</p>
334 <p>The text body should be wrapped at 72 characters. No fancy formatting or tab
335 characters should be used — the news item may be being displayed directly to a
336 terminal. Paragraphs should be separated by a blank line.</p>
337 <p>Hyperlinks may be used to refer to further information (for example, an upgrade
338 guide). However, the main body of the news item should be descriptive and not
339 simply a &quot;read this link&quot; text. It is assumed that the user will have access to
340 a web browser <em>somewhere</em>, but not necessarily on the box which is being
341 administrated — this will be the case on many servers and routers, for example.</p>
342 </div>
343 <div class="section">
344 <h3><a class="toc-backref" href="#id31" id="example-news-item" name="example-news-item">Example News Item</a></h3>
345 <p><a class="reference" href="glep-0042-extras/example-news-item.txt">This hypothetical news item</a> <a class="footnote-reference" href="#id18" id="id19" name="id19">[16]</a> could be used for an upgrade to the
346 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">YourSQL</span></tt> database format which breaks forward compatibility.</p>
347 </div>
348 </div>
349 <div class="section">
350 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id32" id="news-item-quality-control" name="news-item-quality-control">News Item Quality Control</a></h2>
351 <p>There have been complaints regarding the comprehensibility of some upgrade
352 notices and news items in the past. This is understandable — not every Gentoo
353 developer speaks English as a first language. However, for the sake of clarity,
354 professionalism and avoiding making us look like prats, it is important that any
355 language problems be corrected before inflicting a news item upon end users.</p>
356 <p>Thus, at least 72 hours before a proposed news item is committed, it must be
357 posted to the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gentoo-dev</span></tt> mailing list and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">Cc:</span></tt>ed to <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pr&#64;gentoo.org</span></tt>
358 (exceptions may be made in exceptional circumstances). Any complaints — for
359 example regarding wording, clarity or accuracy — <strong>must</strong> be addressed before
360 the news item goes live.</p>
361 <p>News items must only be for <strong>important</strong> changes that may cause serious upgrade
362 or compatibility problems. Ordinary upgrade messages and non-critical news items
363 should remain in <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">einfo</span></tt> notices. The importance of the message to its
364 intended audience should be justified with the proposal.</p>
365 <div class="important">
366 <p class="first admonition-title">Important</p>
367 <p class="last">The filtering system means that it is appropriate to send out
368 news items which are aimed at users of an uncommon package or architecture.
369 Thus, the justification should be in the form &quot;this message is important to
370 YourSQL users because ...&quot;, not &quot;YourSQL is important because ...&quot;.</p>
371 </div>
372 </div>
373 <div class="section">
374 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id33" id="news-item-distribution" name="news-item-distribution">News Item Distribution</a></h2>
375 <div class="section">
376 <h3><a class="toc-backref" href="#id34" id="server-side" name="server-side">Server Side</a></h3>
377 <p>News items are to be made available via the standard rsync tree. This removes
378 any need for polling of a remote source.</p>
379 <p>A new repository will be created for news items. The type (CVS or Subversion),
380 location and access controls on this repository are beyond the scope of this
381 GLEP.</p>
382 <div class="note">
383 <p class="first admonition-title">Note</p>
384 <p class="last">A previous draft of this GLEP instead used the main <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gentoo-x86</span></tt>
385 tree. This was changed following advice from Infrastructure
386 <a class="footnote-reference" href="#ramereth-repo" id="id14" name="id14">[12]</a>. Both solutions have the same end result.</p>
387 </div>
388 <p>This repository will contain directories named <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy/mm/</span></tt>, where <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy</span></tt> is
389 the current year and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">mm</span></tt> is the current month number (01 for January through
390 12 for December). This separation will help keep news items more manageable.</p>
391 <p>The contents of this repository will automatically be merged with the main rsync
392 tree, placing the items in a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">metadata/news/</span></tt> directory. The method used for
393 merging these items and the frequency at which it will occur is beyond the scope
394 of this GLEP; a similar setup is already used for merging GLSAs into the rsync
395 tree.</p>
396 <p>The main rsync tree will <strong>not</strong> use the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">yyyy/mm/</span></tt> subdirectory layout. The
397 news item directories will all be immediately under the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">metadata/news/</span></tt>
398 directory.</p>
399 </div>
400 <div class="section">
401 <h3><a class="toc-backref" href="#id35" id="client-side" name="client-side">Client Side</a></h3>
402 <p>Whenever relevant unread news items are found, the package manager will create a
403 file named <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">/var/lib/gentoo/news/news-${repoid}.unread</span></tt> (if it does not
404 already exist) and append the news item identifier (eg
405 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">2005-11-01-yoursql-updates</span></tt>) on a new line.</p>
406 <p>All news item related files should be root owned and in the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">portage</span></tt> group
407 with the group write (and, for directories, execute) bits set. News files should
408 be world readable.</p>
409 <p>Notification that new relevant news items will be displayed via the
410 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">emerge</span></tt> tool in a similar way to the existing &quot;configuration files need
411 updating&quot; messages:</p>
412 <pre class="literal-block">
413 * Important: there are 5 unread news items.
414 * Type emerge --help news to learn how to read news files.
415 </pre>
416 <p>Checks for new news messages should be displayed:</p>
417 <ul class="simple">
418 <li>After an <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">emerge</span> <span class="pre">sync</span></tt></li>
419 <li>After an <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">emerge</span> <span class="pre">--pretend</span></tt></li>
420 <li>Before an <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">emerge</span> <span class="pre">&lt;target&gt;</span></tt> (which may also include a red warning message)</li>
421 </ul>
422 <p>The package manager does not need to know how to launch the user's choice of
423 news client. This is consistent with the way configuration file updates are
424 handled.</p>
425 <p>The package manager may use a timestamp check file to avoid having to process
426 news items unnecessarily.</p>
427 <p>The package manager must keep track of news items that have already been added
428 to the unread list to avoid repeatedly marking a deleted news item. This could
429 be handled via a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">news-${repoid}.skip</span></tt> file containing the IDs of news items
430 that have already been added to a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">news-${repoid}.unread</span></tt> file, but this
431 method is not required by this GLEP.</p>
432 <p>Users who really don't care about news items can use <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">rsync_excludes</span></tt> to
433 filter out the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">metadata/news/</span></tt> directory.</p>
434 </div>
435 </div>
436 <div class="section">
437 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id36" id="news-item-clients" name="news-item-clients">News Item Clients</a></h2>
438 <p>Once a news item is marked for reading, third party tools (or traditional core
439 Unix tools) can be used to display and view the news files.</p>
440 <p>When a news item is read, its name should be removed from the
441 <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">news-repoid.unread</span></tt> file. If a news client acts as an interactive reader
442 rather than a gateway, it should then add the name to a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">news-repoid.read</span></tt>
443 file in the same directory with the same file format.</p>
444 <p>An <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">eselect</span></tt> <a class="footnote-reference" href="#eselect" id="id15" name="id15">[3]</a> module shall be created as the 'suggested' display
445 tool; other display tools (for example, a news to email forwarder, which would
446 be ideal for users who sync on a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cron</span></tt>) are left as options for those who
447 desire them.</p>
448 </div>
449 <div class="section">
450 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id37" id="news-item-removal" name="news-item-removal">News Item Removal</a></h2>
451 <p>News items can be removed (by removing the news file from the main tree) when
452 they are no longer relevant, if they are made obsolete by a future news item or
453 after a long period of time. This is the same as the method used for <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">updates</span></tt>
454 entries.</p>
455 </div>
456 </div>
457 <div class="section">
458 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id38" id="integration-with-existing-systems" name="integration-with-existing-systems">Integration with Existing Systems</a></h1>
459 <p>It would be simple to convert these news items into the format used for news
460 items on the Gentoo website or posts for the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">gentoo-announce</span></tt> mailing list.</p>
461 <p>There is an existing automated tool <a class="footnote-reference" href="#forums-glsa" id="id16" name="id16">[4]</a> for posting GLSAs to the
462 forums. A similar tool can be used for these news items.</p>
463 </div>
464 <div class="section">
465 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id39" id="backwards-compatibility" name="backwards-compatibility">Backwards Compatibility</a></h1>
466 <p>Backwards compatibility is not a concern here. Existing tools will simply ignore
467 the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">news/</span></tt> directory.</p>
468 </div>
469 <div class="section">
470 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id40" id="reference-implementation" name="reference-implementation">Reference Implementation</a></h1>
471 <div class="section">
472 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id41" id="portage-code" name="portage-code">Portage Code</a></h2>
473 <p>TODO</p>
474 </div>
475 <div class="section">
476 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id42" id="simple-eselect-news-client" name="simple-eselect-news-client">Simple <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">eselect</span></tt> News Client</a></h2>
477 <p>TODO Removed until the exact format details are figured out.</p>
478 </div>
479 <div class="section">
480 <h2><a class="toc-backref" href="#id43" id="simple-news-to-mail-forwarder" name="simple-news-to-mail-forwarder">Simple News to Mail Forwarder</a></h2>
481 <p>TODO Removed until the exact format details are figured out.</p>
482 </div>
483 </div>
484 <div class="section">
485 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id44" id="credits" name="credits">Credits</a></h1>
486 <p>The idea behind notifying users of news updates via Portage comes from Stuart
487 Herbert <a class="footnote-reference" href="#stuart-blog" id="id17" name="id17">[15]</a>.</p>
488 <p>Thanks to Lance Albertson, Stephen Bennett, Donnie Berkholz, Grant Goodyear,
489 Brian Harring, Marius Mauch, Dan Meltzer, Jason Stubbs, Paul de Vrieze and Alec
490 Warner for input. Some of the ideas presented here are theirs, others go
491 completely against their suggestions.</p>
492 </div>
493 <div class="section">
494 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id45" id="example-files" name="example-files">Example Files</a></h1>
495 <p>TODO Removed until the exact format details are figured out.</p>
496 </div>
497 <div class="section">
498 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id46" id="references" name="references">References</a></h1>
499 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="bug-11359" rules="none">
500 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
501 <tbody valign="top">
502 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id1" name="bug-11359">[1]</a></td><td>Bugzilla Bug 11359
503 &quot;[NEW FEATURE] pkg_postinst/pkg_preinst ewarn/einfo logging&quot;,
504 <a class="reference" href="https://bugs.gentoo.org/show_bug.cgi?id=11359">https://bugs.gentoo.org/show_bug.cgi?id=11359</a></td></tr>
505 </tbody>
506 </table>
507 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="docs-policy" rules="none">
508 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
509 <tbody valign="top">
510 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id8" name="docs-policy">[2]</a></td><td>Gentoo XML Guide, Daniel Robbins et al.,
511 <a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/xml-guide.xml">http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/xml-guide.xml</a></td></tr>
512 </tbody>
513 </table>
514 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="eselect" rules="none">
515 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
516 <tbody valign="top">
517 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id15" name="eselect">[3]</a></td><td>eselect modular framework for configuration and
518 administration utilities,
519 <a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/eselect/index.xml">http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/eselect/index.xml</a></td></tr>
520 </tbody>
521 </table>
522 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="forums-glsa" rules="none">
523 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
524 <tbody valign="top">
525 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id16" name="forums-glsa">[4]</a></td><td>Forums user GLSA,
526 <a class="reference" href="http://forums.gentoo.org/profile.php?mode=viewprofile&amp;u=55648">http://forums.gentoo.org/profile.php?mode=viewprofile&amp;u=55648</a></td></tr>
527 </tbody>
528 </table>
529 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="forums-apache2" rules="none">
530 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
531 <tbody valign="top">
532 <tr><td class="label"><a name="forums-apache2">[5]</a></td><td><em>(<a class="fn-backref" href="#id2">1</a>, <a class="fn-backref" href="#id3">2</a>)</em> Forums thread &quot;Gentoo Apache2 Config Change Idiocy&quot;,
533 <a class="reference" href="http://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic-t-384368.html">http://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic-t-384368.html</a></td></tr>
534 </tbody>
535 </table>
536 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="glep-22" rules="none">
537 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
538 <tbody valign="top">
539 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id12" name="glep-22">[6]</a></td><td>GLEP 22: &quot;New &quot;keyword&quot; system to incorporate various
540 userlands/kernels/archs&quot;, Grant Goodyear,
541 <a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0022.html">http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0022.html</a></td></tr>
542 </tbody>
543 </table>
544 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="glep-31" rules="none">
545 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
546 <tbody valign="top">
547 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id9" name="glep-31">[7]</a></td><td>GLEP 31: &quot;Character Sets for Portage Tree Items&quot;, Ciaran
548 McCreesh,
549 <a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0031.html">http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0031.html</a></td></tr>
550 </tbody>
551 </table>
552 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="glep-34" rules="none">
553 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
554 <tbody valign="top">
555 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id6" name="glep-34">[8]</a></td><td>GLEP 34: &quot;Per-Category metadata.xml Files&quot;, Ciaran McCreesh,
556 <a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0034.html">http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0034.html</a></td></tr>
557 </tbody>
558 </table>
559 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="glep-36" rules="none">
560 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
561 <tbody valign="top">
562 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id4" name="glep-36">[9]</a></td><td>GLEP 36: &quot;Subversion/CVS for Gentoo Hosted Projects&quot;, Aaron
563 Walker,
564 <a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0036.html">http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0036.html</a></td></tr>
565 </tbody>
566 </table>
567 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="glep-45" rules="none">
568 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
569 <tbody valign="top">
570 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id11" name="glep-45">[10]</a></td><td>GLEP 45: &quot;GLEP date format&quot;, Henrik Brix Andersen,
571 <a class="reference" href="http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0045.html">http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/glep/glep-0045.html</a></td></tr>
572 </tbody>
573 </table>
574 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="iso-639" rules="none">
575 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
576 <tbody valign="top">
577 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id5" name="iso-639">[11]</a></td><td>ISO 639 &quot;Code for the representation of names of languages&quot;</td></tr>
578 </tbody>
579 </table>
580 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="ramereth-repo" rules="none">
581 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
582 <tbody valign="top">
583 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id14" name="ramereth-repo">[12]</a></td><td>&quot;Re: [gentoo-dev] GLEP ??: Critical News Reporting&quot;, Lance
584 Albertson,
585 <a class="reference" href="http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=gentoo-dev&amp;m=113111585907703&amp;w=2">http://marc.theaimsgroup.com/?l=gentoo-dev&amp;m=113111585907703&amp;w=2</a></td></tr>
586 </tbody>
587 </table>
588 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="rfc-822" rules="none">
589 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
590 <tbody valign="top">
591 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id10" name="rfc-822">[13]</a></td><td><a class="reference" href="http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc822.html">RFC 822</a> &quot;Standard for the format of ARPA Internet text messages&quot;</td></tr>
592 </tbody>
593 </table>
594 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="rfc-3629" rules="none">
595 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
596 <tbody valign="top">
597 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id7" name="rfc-3629">[14]</a></td><td><a class="reference" href="http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc3629.html">RFC 3629</a>: &quot;UTF-8, a transformation format of ISO 10646&quot;
598 <a class="reference" href="http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc3629.txt">http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc3629.txt</a></td></tr>
599 </tbody>
600 </table>
601 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="stuart-blog" rules="none">
602 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
603 <tbody valign="top">
604 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id17" name="stuart-blog">[15]</a></td><td>&quot;Favouring an automatic news mechanism&quot;, Stuart Herbert,
605 <a class="reference" href="http://stu.gnqs.org/diary/gentoo.php/2005/10/28/favouring_an_automatic_news_mechanism">http://stu.gnqs.org/diary/gentoo.php/2005/10/28/favouring_an_automatic_news_mechanism</a></td></tr>
606 </tbody>
607 </table>
608 <table class="docutils footnote" frame="void" id="id18" rules="none">
609 <colgroup><col class="label" /><col /></colgroup>
610 <tbody valign="top">
611 <tr><td class="label"><a class="fn-backref" href="#id19" name="id18">[16]</a></td><td><a class="reference" href="glep-0042-extras/example-news-item.txt">glep-0042-extras/example-news-item.txt</a></td></tr>
612 </tbody>
613 </table>
614 </div>
615 <div class="section">
616 <h1><a class="toc-backref" href="#id47" id="copyright" name="copyright">Copyright</a></h1>
617 <p>This document has been placed in the public domain.</p>
618 <!-- vim: set tw=80 fileencoding=utf-8 spell spelllang=en et : -->
619 </div>
620
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622 <div class="footer">
623 <hr class="footer" />
624 <a class="reference" href="glep-0042.txt">View document source</a>.
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