Discussion about a new BLFS release

Randy McMurchy randy at linuxfromscratch.org
Thu Nov 4 06:57:25 PDT 2010

Hi all,

I would sure like to see a new version of BLFS released. I will be very
busy (just for the record, I have gone back to school for a new degree
and it consumes much of my time), but I will commit to a couple of hours
a day.

We are behind in several areas. Wayne, Ken, and DJ have kept the project
alive and I am grateful to them for this. Here's my take on the state of
BLFS. I am encouraging everyone to contribute to this discussion because
I have been out of the loop for so long.

Section 4: Security
Seems to be close to up-to-date, except for OpenSSL which would be nice
to get to 1.0.0 for a release. Ken has been doing extensive testing, as
I will as well. Not sure about the GnuPG stack, and I know the Kerberos
packages are behind. I have been subscribed to the Heimdal dev list for
years, to I am at least aware of where it stands. I can test it easily.
MIT I typically trust using the most current version after a test
installation. Stunnel needs to be updated. Section  4 is important as
they are our *security* packages, which need to be fairly current.

Sections 5-7:
Vim probably should be updated to 7.3 and match LFS (dev and stable).
The Shells, Filesystems, and Editors should be looked at.

Sections 8-11:
Seems to be more or less up-to-date. We are probably stuck with outdated
versions of the GLib/GTK+/ATK/Pango stack if we stay with GNOME-2.30.2.
Not sure if that is a big deal or not.

Section 12: Programming
Is not very current. It needs some work, but nothing there is difficult.

Sections 13-18:
This is networking stuff that should be looked at for security issues.
There are tickets for many of them.

Sections 19-22:
Are the servers and they should be looked at for security vulnerabilities
and that they build and function properly against fairly recent LFS.

Sections 23-25:
Are the X stuff and it is probably fairly current. It seems DJ just did
a bunch of work updating Xorg, and the other X tools just need to be
looked at to see if there are very old versions of anything, but I doubt
it as most of them are required for GNOME and Wayne has that fairly

Sections 26-28: KDE
Not even a clue what to do here. The book version is a more than two
year old desktop that I don't even know if anyone has been following for
security patches. Nobody likes CMake and KDE4.x (well, not really nobody,
but there has been no book development towards it), so what to do?

Sections 29-30: GNOME
We are fairly current, but if 6 months goes by without a BLFS release,
it would be considered an old desktop. We are at 2.30.2, 2.32 has
already been released and in 6 months 3.0 will have been released.

Sections 31-34:
These programs and applications are mostly current, some need to be
updated (GnuCash?), but overall we are not in bad shape. Ken has done
a lot of work here (thanks!).

Sections 35-38:
Multimedia, audio and video utils and CD/DVD tools. Again, Ken has done
quite a bit of work here (thanks again!). K3b probably needs to be
updated, and I will cave in and ditch XMMS and the entire suite of
GTK+-1 tools.

The rest of the book is fairly current with a few exceptions. I will
handle the update from TeTeX to TeX-Live (from source, not a binary

Hopefully, those that read through this synopsis of the state of BLFS
can give suggestions on what really needs to be done, as I was guessing
on much of what is written above.


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