Debian Contributions: DEP-17, Debian Reimbursements Web App, and more!

Contributing to Debian is part of Freexian’s mission. This article covers the latest achievements of Freexian and their collaborators. All of this is made possible by organizations subscribing to our Long Term Support contracts and consulting services.

DEP-17 progress, by Helmut and Emilio

We posted a proposal for modifying dpkg to better cope with directory aliasing. After an initial period of silence, the discussion took off, but was mostly diverted to a competing proposal by Luca Boccassi: Do not change dpkg at all, but still move all files affected by aliasing to their canonical location and thus removing the bad effects of aliasing. We facilitated this discussion and performed extensive analysis of this and competing proposals highlighting resulting problems and proposing solutions or workarounds. We performed a detailed analysis of how aliasing affects usage of dpkg-divert, dpkg-statoverride and update-alternatives. Details are available on the debian-dpkg mailinglist thread.

Debian Reimbursements Web App Progress, by Stefano Rivera

In a project funded by Freexian’s Project Funding initiative, Stefano made some more progress on the Debian Reimbursements Web App. The full workflow can now be exercised, completing the first milestone of the project, the Working Prototype.

DebConf Bursary Team, by Utkarsh Gupta

Utkarsh started to prep the bursary team work, gearing up for DebConf, happening in India in September 2023. To learn more about the bursaries team, head to For learning how to apply for bursaries, visit

Miscellaneous contributions

  • Stefano attended several DebConf planning meetings, and did some work on the DebConf 23 website.
  • Stefano updated distro-info-data to include the release date of Debian bullseye, and added the next Ubuntu release, Mantic Minotour. This required a round of updates to all the stable releases, LTS, and ELTS.
  • Helmut sent patches for 13 cross build failures and filed 104 RC bugs for missing Breaks and Replaces.

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