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[Pan-devel] Re: Pan in Fedora Extras

From: Duncan
Subject: [Pan-devel] Re: Pan in Fedora Extras
Date: Thu, 08 Dec 2005 06:51:02 -0700
User-agent: Pan/ (As She Crawled Across the Table)

Michael A. Peters posted
<address@hidden>, excerpted below,  on
Wed, 07 Dec 2005 17:52:30 -0800:

> I maintain the pan rpm's in Fedora Extras for FC4


> FC5 is in the testing stages now - I don't have any open bugs against pan
> that need resolving, but sometimes users don't report bugs to bugzilla.
> Are there any specific issues people have been having with the Fedora
> Extras packages?

Nothing has been reported to the lists/groups that seems to stand out. 
Most problems/requests are with PAN itself.  Given that there hasn't been
a release in some time, dependencies and the like, stuff that's likely to
hit packagers, have been stable, so any bugs should have been worked out
(barring of course other stuff moving beyond PAN, which fortunately
doesn't seem to have happened just yet).

> Secondly - is there any kind of an upcoming snapshot or release? I have
> not played with what is in CVS at all, but if there is a new release
> anywhere near ready, then (and only then) I'd like to play with it in the
> Fedora devel branch in case any issues with packaging it ASAP after
> release (ie a build dependency not provided etc.) exist.

First, to clear up some potential confusion...  I'm not a PAN dev, only an
"advanced" user and group/list regular that speaks enough "developer" to
follow along decently well.  Lacking the necessary skills to actually hack
on PAN itself, my contribution has been as a loyal list/group regular that
tries to answer questions and generally be of as much help as I can,
ideally, leaving the developers free of having to answer tedious questions
in the user and dev lists, therefore having more time to actually code.
=8^)  The following comments should be taken from that viewpoint.

What's in CVS is a pretty big rewrite.  Charles and Chris took somewhat
over a year off (it happens with projects done in one's spare time),
during which time K Haley and others started working on the long planned
porting of PAN's back end to the SQLite database.  That work hasn't
progressed to the point that it can be in trunk, yet -- it's still a 
separate project, but since his return, Charles has changed a lot of the
way PAN handles things internally, easing the memory scaling problems PAN
has had (CVS is said to handle 1-2 million overview groups now, without
the almost lockup that would have caused before), and generally getting
things a bit closer to the way the SQLite branch has handled things,
easing the way for an /eventual/ merge.

As such, many of the bugs that apply to the current version either don't
apply or will require different code to apply to what's now in CVS.  Of
course, such a big rewrite means a whole /new/ crop of bugs, as well. 
Thus, even if a new release /were/ to be immediately forthcoming, which I
don't believe is the case, it'd be classified as an early beta, and
therefore probably wouldn't be of the quality you'd want for packaging for
a major distribution.

> Finally - is anyone aware of a working patch to that allows use
> of smtp with authentication? It would be nice. I believe balsa does it
> through an external library provided by libesmtp - I think evolution does
> it through internal code. Pan doesn't seem to do it all, which is too bad
> because a lot of smtp servers now want password authentication before
> sending, including mine (

Yes, that /would/ be nice, because as you say, due to the spam problem,
more and more ISP servers are requiring it.  I'm not aware of any such
patch, unfortunately.  Working thru a local MTA one solution, but
obviously, that sort of setup is rather advanced for a distribution
packager to be trying to explain.

The obvious solution, if you have the required skills, would be to hack up
such a patch yourself.  I'm sure the other distributions would pick it up.
(This assumes you've looked at other distributions' PAN packages yourself,
to see if one's already available, I haven't seen mention of one on the
lists/groups.)  Please post a link if you find one, or create one
yourself.  Normally I'd say bug it too, as Charles has always been
fairly open to patches of that sort.  However, as I said, CVS is a big
rewrite right now, so unless you checkout CVS and ensure the patch works
there as well, it's likely it wouldn't apply cleanly, if at all.  Still,
bugging it would be useful, as it would be there for others, just don't
expect it to be applied to any new versions if you don't sync it with CVS
as submitted (or later amended) in the bug.  So, yes, certainly, bug it if
you find or create such an animal, and post the bug link here as well.

Another possible /individual/ (as in, not appropriate for distribution
packages), if you know scripting but not C coding, would be to try to work
with the "external editor" feature.  Note that normally, the text passed
to the external editor would be the body only, making it difficult. 
However, some playing with the attribution macros may make it slightly
easier, including the address, for instance, with a bit of script-foo from
there used to mangle it into usable shape for whatever it's ultimately
passed to for sending.  Obviously, this is very much a hack approach. 
Still, there's a known script (check the user list archives, it was some
time ago, it /may/ have been submitted as a bug, for tracking, as well,
I'm not sure) that takes this approach to gpg signing a post using the
"external editor" functionality, so precedent is there.

Duncan - List replies preferred.   No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master."  Richard Stallman in

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