Mini Debian Conf 2012 in Paris : Bootstrapping Debian for a new architecture

I just finished to address the awesome debian crowd at the Mini Deb conf in paris. My presentation was about a few challenges we have ahead to bootstrap debian on a new architecture. Johannes Schauer and Wookey did a lot of work in the last few months particularly focusing on Linaro/Ubuntu. After Wheezy I think it is important to catch up with their work and integrate it in debian.

The two main take away messages from my presentation :

  • Add Multi Arch annotations to your packages. This is essential to cross compile packages automatically. We are still not able to cross compile a minimal debian system in debian because we still miss many multi-arch annotations. Experiments show that with these annotations, these packages will cross compile just fine. A lot of work has been done in this direction by Wookey.
  • Debian should consider adding build profiles to build dependencies. Build Profiles are global build dependencies filters to create packages with a different set of functionalities. Build profiles are of the form  Build-Depends: foo (>=0.1) [amd64] <!stage1 bootstrap> | bar.

This week we just reached an important milestone toward a fully automatic bootstrap procedure. Hopefully we are going to tell you more about this work during fosdem 2013

My slides are attached.

debminiconf2012.pdf271.56 KB
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