OpenBSD Journal

p2k18 Hackathon report: Solene Rapenne (solene@) on joining the project, packages progress

Contributed by Peter N. M. Hansteen on from the more packages for puffy dept.

I started being involved in OpenBSD by submitting patches from time to time on ports@ to update a version or fix easy issues. I'm using OpenBSD on my office workstation, on my private servers and my laptops. It allows me to use it everyday in different use cases, and if I miss some software not in ports I can port it to make it available to other users.

I have been invited to p2k18 by Jérémie Courrèges-Anglas (jca@). I never expected to be participating to a hackathon so I was very excited. I do not live far away from Nantes where the hackathon happened, but with our national trains driver strike, I have used a car sharing service for the first time of my life. The trip was very nice and enjoyable, I will definitely practice car sharing again if possible.

When I arrived in the hackroom, most people were already there and I realized I didn't know anyone, except Jérémie. I do not exactly remember but I think I walked straight forward to a free desktop, said a shy "hello" to people and opened my laptop to start porting. The first two days, I did not feel really comfortable in the hackroom. For me, joining a group is not easy at all, but after some time, little by little, things got better. Restaurant was the best way to speak with other OpenBSD developers, and we spent a lot of time there. We ate a _lot_ of food. All along the day, people was bringing food or drinks and a few times got tooooo much food to eat, mostly cheese and french baguettes. We also had nice T-shirts (good sized!) in the theme of machines that can be found in the city of Nantes.

During the hackathon, Jérémie asked me if I wanted to join the OpenBSD team. No suspense here, I accepted the offer. So, as a new OpenBSD developer, I'm currently under "mentorship" of Jérémie and Daniel Jakots (danj@), it means that I currently need an "ok" from at least one of them to commit changes, even if others developers give their "ok" for a change. I have been taught about the different processes in the community, either social or technical. Not really original but very convenient, I choosed solene@ as my "developer name".

During p2k18, as worth mentioning contributions, I imported Boar (sysutils/boar), a software to keep your archives (Pictures, Music, Documents, whatever) synchronized to a remote server and keeping older documents under revisions. It could be seen as "subversion but for binary files". The other major work was to import Mailpile (mail/mailpile), an email client unique in its kind, as it is a single user webmail. It fetchs mails to the local machine and encrypts it on the hard drive, mails get unencrypted on the fly when you need it by unlocked your whole session at log-in. It has also a very powerful full-text search engine, supports dynamic folders (labels) and it has a lot of other features. I decided as well to check every window maker dock-apps available in the ports tree. So I started the 41 ports one by one, trying to figure out their purpose, using it. I found that 8 of them their not working and found various issues on some others. A bunch of deletions is going to happen in the ports tree.

It was my first time in a real life open source event, this hackathon was a really great experience that I wish to renew quickly.

I would like to thank jca@, danj@, espie@, tb@, stsp@, landry@ and those with whom I spent the week. I also thank the OpenBSD Foundation and everyone who has been involved in making all of this possible.

Thanks for the report and the good work it describes, Solene!

We are expecting several more p2k18 reports to turn up over the next few hours or days. Watch this space!

(Comments are closed)

  1. By Jon Tabor (taborj) on

    Excellent write up, especially for those of us 'not in the know' for how this process works. Thanks for doing that!


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