Basic checks over Debian packages

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by (C) João Eriberto Mota Filho <eriberto (a) eriberto pro br>

Creation date: March 26, 2019.

Last update: see the footer.

Bit.ly: http://bit.ly/pkgcheck



Packaging status

  • NEW:
    • Verify using apt-cache search.
    • Verify using wnpp-check.
    • Verify the ITP.
    • Is changelog closing the ITP?
  • Adoption:
    • Verify if is really orphan.
    • Verify the ITA.
    • Is changelog closing the ITA?
  • NMU
    • Is there a maintainer for the package?
    • Is changelog closing the bug?
  • QA
    • Is the package orphan?

Initial check

  • For *-1 revisions, diff between sources (package x upstream).
  • Run debdiff over the last and current .dsc file.
  • debian/changelog: were registered all changes shown by debdiff?

General checks

  • There are previous works in a VCS?
  • There are previous NMUs? We need ACKs.
  • debian/copyright: all data were updated? (dates, maintainers, etc.). [1]
  • debian/patches/: all headers are complete?
  • Can debuild command run twice?
  • Is uscan working?
  • Run spell command over debian/changelog and debian/control. [2]
  • Verify the final structure using tree command. [3]
  • Are all tests running? Use the autopkgtest. [4]
  • There are important files provided by upstream and useful for users not used? (README, TODO, etc.)


[1] The egrep command can be used to check (in upstream place):

$ egrep -sriA25 '(copyright|public dom)' > /tmp/copy
$ egrep '(@|\[)' debian/changelog > /tmp/copy2

[2] The spell command will search for spelling errors. You can add new word to a personal dictionary ~/.ispell_default

$ spell debian/changelog | sort -u

[3] You can use tree over generated structure:

$ tree debian/<package-name>

[4] To use autopkgtest (in upstream place):

$ autopkgtest . -- null

Checks in tracker

Exclamacao36.png All checks here are related to http://tracker.debian.org.
  • Verify all itens in action needed.
  • Verify the building in builld. Click over log or exp (experimental).
  • Verify all opened bugs (Debian and Ubuntu). Try to solve some bugs and close them in debian/changelog.

Final procedures

  • Verify again all files inside debian/ directory.
  • Run cowbuilder to test the building in a fresh jail. [5][6][7]
  • Install and test the final package.
  • Update (push) the Git repository (if using it).
  • Verify the .changes content before upload to Debian.

[5] To create cowbuilder (outside the jail):

# cowbuilder create

[6] To update cowbuilder:

# cowbuilder update

[7] To use the cowbuilder:

# cowbuilder build /patch/name.dsc