[Mageia-discuss] So, you want to become a mageia packager

Remy CLOUARD shikamaru at mandriva.org
Sat Feb 19 21:18:48 CET 2011

Hi there,

As the title says so, this mail is intended to all people who would like
to become a packager, but who don’t know where to look, what’s the path,
what to do.

As you may or may not know, mentoring started a few weeks ago, with some
people who are already quite experienced in packaging.

These people are making progress quite quickly, and will soon be able to
be full-fledged packagers. Now, many of you would like to do that too.

So how to get started ?

Well, there are several things you can already do.

First, I suggest you to join #mageia-mentoring so that you can ask any
question you’d like to people who are already packagers. Don’t hesitate
to ask anything, there’s no stupid question. If you don’t get an
immediate answer, don’t hesitate to ping us

It would also be great that other mentors join the channel as well, so
that we can answer people. At the moment ahmad, mikala, anssi, Nanar and
I are on the channel.

I know nothing about packaging, could you give me a pointer ?

There’s a documentation that tries to summarize how to do a rpm on this

Don’t be afraid by the size of the page, take your time to read it.
We would appreciate some feedbacks about this documentation. Tell us if
some things are not clear, so that we can rephrase it, so that we can
explain it to you.

It’s not that hard really, and I suggest you to take a look at an
existing spec to see how it’s done.

At the moment, many packages have been imported, but many packages are
also waiting for someone to maintain it. You can have a list of
unmaintained packages here:

Beware, check first that the package is not deprecated, unmaintained
upstream, and start with a small one, not very difficult, like a small
console app or a game. Again, if some bits are difficult to understand,
please tell us :-)

I already know some bits of packaging, would like to package for mageia,
what can I do ?

Packaging policies represent a good amount of doc that might be
difficult to learn. You don’t have to know them by heart at first, just
to know that they exist, and that you should refer to them when you are
trying to do. For instance, if you’re interested in python packages, you
don’t have to know the perl packaging policy, but you should know that
they exist and refer to it if you have a perl dependency to your

Package policies are listed in this page :

You might also have a look at the aforementionned rpm start page in case
of doubt, and ask packagers when you don’t know.

Come on #mageia-mentoring, so that you can get in touch with a mentor,
and if he becomes available, you will be able to start with the various
tools we use to build packages.


I do hope that this mail gives you a path to start with, please tell me
if I am missing something, and again don’t be discouraged by the amount
of documentation you will read.

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