Debian wheezy: lots of fixes, new stuff

This last week has been fun. Lots of stuff has been fixed. Let's start with the packaging system...

The packaging system

dpkg/dselect is now at version 1.16.0. Except the ability to show new packages (which is still missing), it has been working very well. Apt has also been fixed and it now doesn't pull all package files all the time. One other thing started to really bother me, those pesky "Hash Sum Mismatch" errors. From what I understand, it happens if the mirror site uses old software to sync stuff. So I decided to switch mirrors, and configured back the good old ftp.debian.org. Now it works well, although slightly slower than before, but I can live with that.

One other thing, if after upgrading dpkg you start getting warnings like this:

dpkg: warning: parsing file '/var/lib/dpkg/status' near line 15307 package 'sortmail':
missing architecture
dpkg: warning: parsing file '/var/lib/dpkg/status' near line 40773 package 'loadwatch':
missing architecture
dpkg: warning: parsing file '/var/lib/dpkg/status' near line 52116 package 'libdbix-profile-perl':
missing architecture
dpkg: warning: parsing file '/var/lib/dpkg/status' near line 83356 package 'cthumb':
missing architecture

just apt-get install --reinstall all those packages (I got the warning only for those four), and the warnings will go away.

Multimedia

I've noticed that new flash plugin has found way to www.debian-multimedia.org. Unfortunately, I have some issues even with that one, so I still run 10.1.102.64-0.0, which is the last one that works well for me. I don't know if it's Nvidia driver specific problem, but it's very persistent. I even tried some beta flash plugin downloaded directly from Adobe's site, and even that one didn't do it for me.

Speaking of Nvidia drivers, I decided to try official Debian packages instead of Nvidia's tarball: dkms, libgl1-nvidia-alternatives, libgl1-nvidia-glx, libglx-nvidia-alternatives, nvidia-common, nvidia-glx, nvidia-kernel-common, nvidia-kernel-dkms, nvidia-settings and nvidia-vdpau-driver. I must admit this stuff is very well prepared, so I'll keep that setup and let Debian developers upgrade drivers as they see fit.

Just today, the new version of audacious has arrived. But, as it usually happens, audacious-plugins are yet to be upgraded so audacious is uninstallable right now (or you can put it on hold). But when the upgrade is finished, it will be possible to get rid of some old libraries like liblash2, libmowgli1, etc...

Miscellaneous

New version of udev (167) said this:

udev[4907]: converting old udev database
udev[4908]: starting version 167

Icedove 3.1.9 has entered unstable. Been running great since the upgrade. OpenSSL 1.0.0 is also available now. I guess lots of time will pass before we can get rid of old libssl0.9.8, because so many packages depend on it, but that's OK. Both version can be installed simultaneously.

Finally, here's a question for my loyal readers. There was a time when mime-codecs package could be installed and it provided two simple utilities qp-decode and qp-encode. The purpose of those was to encode/decode quoted printable encoded text in command line. While mime-codecs is long gone (I don't know why), is there any other utility in Debian that provides the same functionalty?

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qp-encode replacement

I've been trying to find a replacement for 'qp-encode', and I've finally stumbled across 'qprint'.

Thanks for the info Graham!

Thanks for the info Graham! That is *exactly* what I was looking for.