July 31st 2020

Free software activities in July 2020

Here is my monthly update covering what I have been doing in the free and open source software world during July 2020 (previous month):

For Lintian, the static analysis tool for Debian packages:


Reproducible Builds

One of the original promises of open source software is that distributed peer review and transparency of process results in enhanced end-user security. However, whilst anyone may inspect the source code of free and open source software for malicious flaws, almost all software today is distributed as pre-compiled binaries. This allows nefarious third-parties to compromise systems by injecting malicious code into ostensibly secure software during the various compilation and distribution processes.

The motivation behind the Reproducible Builds effort is to ensure no flaws have been introduced during this compilation process by promising identical results are always generated from a given source, thus allowing multiple third-parties to come to a consensus on whether a build was compromised.

The project is proud to be a member project of the Software Freedom Conservancy. Conservancy acts as a corporate umbrella allowing projects to operate as non-profit initiatives without managing their own corporate structure. If you like the work of the Conservancy or the Reproducible Builds project, please consider becoming an official supporter.

This month, I:


diffoscope

Elsewhere in our tooling, I made the following changes to diffoscope, including preparing and uploading versions 150, 151, 152, 153 & 154 to Debian:


Debian

In Debian, I made the following uploads this month:


Debian LTS

This month I have worked 18 hours on Debian Long Term Support (LTS) and 12 for the Extended LTS project. This included:

You can find out more about the project via the following video: