This message was sent to the DNG mailing list on December, 22, 2014 to follow up on the previous announcement of the Debian fork. It is kept here for historical interest.
## Debian Fork Update Dear Init Freedom lovers, Once again the Veteran Unix Admin collective salutes you! This is an update on the progress of the Devuan.org project, born out of the Debianfork.org declaration to defend our growing community from the systemd avalanche. This update is quite packed so we will break it down in sections. ### Infrastructure Mostly thanks to the hard work made by our fellow VUA Franco Lanza we have made a lot of progress setting up Devuan's infrastructure, from code repository to building facility to packaging. #### Code repository On popular request, Devuan has now its own Git repository and does not depends anymore on GitHub, which can be optionally used as a mirror on a per-project basis. Devuan uses GitLab on https://git.devuan.org as the origin for the official Devuan sources, as well as a wiki for documentation, planning and collective drafting of documents. We welcome any Init Freedom lover developing solutions to resist the systemd avalanche to push code also into our repository, applying for our review and evaluation and, if reasonably in need, request our financial support. Those willing to get involved are welcome to create an account on https://git.devuan.org and signal it on `#devuan-dev` (freenode IRC). #### Build facility This is the most recent achievement on infrastructure development: last night the first devuan-baseconf package was built correctly through our continuous integration infrastructure, pulling directly from our source repository. The pipeline `code -> build -> package` for Devuan is realized using `git -> jenkins -> dak` and lays down a smooth road to automate the integration of mature codebases into the Devuan package repository. #### Package repository This was the first part of our infrastructure to be set up & running, it currently contains the devuan-baseconf package and is being tested in various situations, including the very servers on which Devuan is running! http://packages.devuan.org/devuan/ By the next update we can expect a range of packages ready for beta-testing, providing a devuan package that automatically does pinning on a Debian 8 "Jessie" and installs components and shims to keep systemd away and stay with sysvinit as default for PID1. ### Research Besides consolidating our own infrastructure, we are also following and supporting any cutting-edge research on strategies and expedients to support Init Freedom. #### ConsoleKit2 A prolific researcher known by the nickname of max2344 has made well informed contributions and has already published a number of repositories patched to avoid systemd: ConsoleKit2, udisks2, policykit-1 and pcsc-lite https://github.com/max2344?tab=repositories In the coming time we wish to support max2344 on these efforts, test and, if useful for the 1.0 release, integrate this code into the Devuan build pipeline. Meanwhile max2344 has set up an independent repository to test his packages at http://packages.psycast.de/devuan #### Loginkitd (working name) The research conducted by Dimkr went into the implementation of a compatible, yet standalone alternative to logind and libsystemd which does not depend on a specific init system. Loginkitd aims to act as a glue layer that exposes logind's interface, but uses ConsoleKit2 as a backend. This work made good progress and debunked several undocumented aspects of how logind, DBus and GDM interact. https://github.com/dimkr/LoginKit Dimkr is also the author of "nosystem" a tiny library to replace libsystemd with stubs https://github.com/dimkr/nosystem The VUA collective has decided to use part of the donations received on Devuan.org to support Dimkr's research with hardware he needed. #### libudev1 A fellow VUA and developer Matteo Panella is exploring the horizon of libudev1 and is planning to present some of his findings any time soon. He has been actively contributing to open technical discussions on our first dng mailinglist. ### What to keep your eyes peeled for? Around are more projects that are not directly linked to Devuan and are worthed to support and keep an eye on. We recommend following: - eudev http://www.gentoo.org/proj/en/eudev/ - vdev https://github.com/jcnelson/vdev https://www.freelists.org/post/modular-debian/Announcing-vdev - uselessd http://uselessd.darknedgy.net/ We consider these projects also eligible for our financial support: if you are involved in one of them and you are in need of it please contact us! write an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. ### Worth reading The good folks at Troubleshooters.Com®, Linux Library and Init System Ideas are presenting The Manjaro Experiments http://www.troubleshooters.com/linux/init/manjaro_experiments.htm The documentation on the generic Without systemd wiki is growing and seems to be the most comprehensive collection of links and informations on initiatives trying to resist the systemd avalanche. http://without-systemd.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page ### Finances The finances of the Devuan project are administered by the Dyne.org foundation, an international organization based in Amsterdam. Dyne.org commits to financial transparency and will publish financial reports for this project, keeping them updated every year. The current financial report for 2014 is already made available: https://www.devuan.org/devuan_financial_report_2014.pdf Our gratitude goes to donors that supported us so far, despite the early stage of the project, and to all those who will decide to do so in the future. Through the year 2015 We intend to use donations to advance towards a Devuan 1.0 release that can seamlessly substitute Debian Jessie while keeping its users safe from the systemd avalanche. At this stage, sponsors to support us in this quest are also welcome. Donations to the Devuan project can be made in several ways: - To Paypal account `email@example.com` with reason "VUA" - Via Stripe (creditcard) from website https://www.devuan.org/donate.html - To Bitcoin address *1QFbx3bKA8LABAGEaSe7EiP9JCxe2j4fN7* - Via bank wiretransfer, with description 'VUA donation', to: Dyne.org, bank ABN-AMRO (Amsterdam, The Netherlands), IBAN: NL87ABNA0406496021, BIC: ABNANL2A ### Community The Devuan community is growing at a steady pace! Here some numbers: #### IRC (on freenode.net) - `#debianfork` counts an average of 300 people present (general talk, not strictly devuan related) - `#devuan` counts an average of 200 people present (devuan related talk) - `#devuan-dev` is just born with a small group there (devuan development talk, strictly technical issues) #### Mailinglist (dng at https://lists.dyne.org) Counting 343 subscribers as of today, our mailinglist contains discussions about a wide range of topic, maybe too wide :^) and represents the first campfire for this project. Subscription and archives are on: https://mailinglists.dyne.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/dng BTW dng is now also archived on GMane and accessible via NNTP http://dir.gmane.org/gmane.linux.devuan.devel #### Human language translations Initiatives to translate the information around the Devuan project have quickly and independently started and we are grateful to anyone taking such initiatives. The French page on https://Devuan.fr has already a translation of our frontpage! Donc: Ne paniquez pas, on va fork Debian™! :^) Also the Devuan.de domain is getting ready to translate and mirror contents. Anyone willing to contribute to the project in this phase is welcome to start such initiatives in his/her mother-language. #### Logo Quite some threads went on the mailinglist about the Devuan logo and way to present the project. While this is a minor priority for us now, we appreciate the enthusiasm and quality of contributions. Have a look at the gallery on the Without-systemd wiki http://without-systemd.org/wiki/index.php/Category:Logo As well to Alban Crommer's design study for Devuan http://albancrommer.github.io/devuan/Logo.pdf http://albancrommer.github.io/devuan/ Thanks! when the time will come for a 1.0 release we will certainly have choosen the best. So far most people seem to be enthusiastic about the galaxy designs in Alban's and Petrek's contributions. #### What to do about trolls We must not become acquainted to the fact that systemd discussions are swarmed by trolls fostering aggressive behaviour and personalized attacks of sorts. With the Devuan project and its early Debianfork declaration we did our best to avoid such dynamics, to bring forward a constructive discussion and action plan to respond to the systemd avalanche with technical analyses and solutions. We kindly ask the community gathering around Devuan to take us seriously on this and avoid aggressive behaviour. Everyone should use extra attention when engaging criticism and in any case avoid any personalization, but stick to facts. Recently on our mailinglist we have seen at least two threads calling the Devuan project a fraud. To such insults and defamations we believe we can respond with attention to details and educated responses to what can be a legitimate criticism, but should never become a prejudicial attack beyond reasoning. As an aftermath to certain aggressions we understand that some members of the community have taken action against trolls to the point that they went exposing their identity and threatening some sort of revenge. The VUA collective, the Dyne.org foundation and its representative Denis Roio who has been also targeted by trolls aggressions do not take part in such retaliations, do not approve them nor desire to be associated with them in any way. We will keep doing everything possible to keep Devuan a pleasant project to get involved in without any personal risk and we invite any member of the community engaging such dynamics to desist, leave trolls alone and ignore them. We will keep actively moderating the mailinglist and IRC channels with a growing number of volunteers to avoid such situations. At last, we applaud and deride the @shitdevuansays twitter account for playing such an early parody on our project. We understand this is the attitude of systemd supporters and we are not offended by it, rather than thankful for contributing to the notoriety of Devuan. ### That's all folks! And thanks for all the support and participation so far, we leave you with a funny comic strip by Commitstrip.com titled Systemd World: the Park is open http://www.commitstrip.com/en/2014/12/01/systemd-world-the-park-is-open featuring our project Devuan: we are honored to sit besides Slackware, an ancient and respectable GNU/Linux distribution that seems to have still a lot to teach, even to Veteran Unix Admins. To contact the Veteran Unix Admins, write to firstname.lastname@example.org.