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Come together, yeah
Come together, yeah
Come together, yeah
Come together, yeah

-- the Beatles, Come Together

Here is a short update on the state of LibreOffice Packaging on Ubuntu (and Debian):
During the 3.4/3.5 upstream releases, Debian (and thus Ubuntu) switched from building with the old libreoffice-build wrapper to a clean direct build. All patches had to be either upstreamed or migrated from libreoffice-build to our own vendor-patches. This is a lot of thankless work (as it risks regressions, while nothing changes if everyting goes well). A quick "git log" against the LibreOffice packaging repository from the 3.4.1-1 release to now (3.5.2) shows more than 800 commits -- over 600 of those by Rene Engelhard, but also including contributions by Lionel Elie Mamane, Nelson A. de Oliveira, Rico Tzschichholz, Lubok Lunak.

These changes have made Ubuntu and Debian come a lot closer to upstream -- a lot of patches have been either removed as obsolete, upstreamed to LibreOffice or included as vendor-patches. With only 41 Patches in debian/patches we are a lot closer to upstream now, which is very good as it removes the need to doublecheck bugs to be Debian/Ubuntu-specific in the most cases. Of the five patches that are only in Ubuntu, but not in Debian:

  • three are minor fixes that have been upstreamed to LibreOffice 3.6 (but are not backported to 3.5 there)
  • two are backported upstream patches from LibreOffice 3.5.3 so they are in the LTS release from the start
This shows that a lot of friction in upstreaming patches has been removed -- and whatever we are patching in can and is upstreamed quickly to Debian or LibreOffice, keeping our vendor patch queue small. Thanks to everyone who made this possible -- most of all: Rene Engelhard.


Bjoern Michaelsen

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