[Outreachy Dec-Mar 2017, 2nd report] Building a Debian package: make it public

In the last article I described preparation steps for building a package with sbuild. Now I want to describe how to make our package available on mentors.debian.net. This site is intended to help people to upload their packages to debian. Since, only several people has such a permission other people should upload their packages and look for a “sponsor”. The meaning of this word is described better on the site. In this article I want to describe what steps should be taken in order to upload our package into the site.

Preparing a package

Firstly, we should build and sign our package. But before signing it we should generate our signature:

gpg –full-generate-key

we can list our keys:

gpg –list-secret-keys –keyid-format LONG

and now we have an ability to see our public key:

gpg –armor –export <our key id>

The printed key we will have to copy to our mentors.debian.net profile in order to allow the site to check our signature on uploaded packages.

Now we can build and sign our package:

dpkg-buildpackage -S -d –sign-key=<our key id>

Note that here we use -S option which means that we want to build a source package.

We can build out package with sbuild:


Now we should check out package with lintian:

cd ..

lintian -I -E –show-overrides –pedantic `ls *.changes`

It is good if there are no warnings in lintian’s output.

Now we can try to upload our package. To achieve this we can use two different tools  dput or dupload. I will use dput-ng – the new generation of dput tool. First of all, we should create a configuration file. It’s format is described here. At this stage we should have an account on mentors.debian.net with our  public key (signature) being written inside of it. The command is quite simple:

dput mentors libosmo-sccp_0.7.0-4_source.changes

After this we should receive an e-mail about the package upload and see it in our profile under ‘My packages’ tab. Further, I want to describe some difficulties which I encountered during the process of the package upload.

Problems and issues [in work:add more links]

Though I was able to upload the package I still have some problems.

First of all, it is not clear for me what happens during dpkg-buildpackage and sbuild phases. I am going to describe it in details in the next post.

Second of all, technical problems and discovered problems with documentation. On the one hand, it is not very clear what should be placed in the debian folder. And on the other hand, it is hard to understand what the content of the placed files is.  For example, in the documentation some fields of the rules files are marked as required, but in many packages they are absent and generated automatically.



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