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> English > Contribute > Developers > Working within Debian > Posting Debian bug reports

Posting Debian bug reports

December 2011

All the versions of this article: [English] [русский]

If you wish to report bugs to Debian directly because you’re encountering a problem and you know this is not a DDL-specific issue, the best thing to do is to report the bug to Debian too. Debian has several tools to do so, among those a dedicated application called reportbug. Of course you’ll have created a ticket in our project management software before :).

Basic information

The Debian website has a dedicated page for reporting bugs. Everything functions with emails: a bug report is a standard email with particular fields. The entire bug life is managed through emails. You can open a new bug by either sending a handwritten email or using a Debian bug reporting tool that writes the email for you then sends it to Debian servers if you have configured a local mail transfer agent (MTA) on your machine.

Note that software of interest that is not yet packaged as a Debian package can be proposed for packaging to the Debian developers community, using Debian bug reports. In this case the email is a bit different and the best solution is certainly to use the Debian bug reporting tools, as explained in the page dedicated to WNPP reports.

Reporting a bug to Debian

As we’re now part of Debian Derivatives, we have to work together with Debian and a way to do this is to let them collect our bug reports easily. This is done by adding to bug reports a Usertag which is simply doudoulinux. We also have to use a unique email address, which is <>.

So shortly, to report a new bug to Debian:

  1. create a bug report on Redmine
  2. create a bug report on Debian
    1. using the email “Your Name <>”
    2. including in header “Usertags: doudoulinux”
  3. link the Debian bug report URL in the Redmine ticket

Our Debian bugs are then automatically collected in a dedicated page. In order to answer the Debian bug comments later, you’ll have to ask Jean-Michel the email account password, in a private email :). Note that if you’ve forgotten to add DoudouLinux specific information in your bug report, it is possible to add it afterwards, even user tags.

Please take special attention, when writing your bug report, to be as clear as possible. Also report as many details as possible, as well as a procedure and eventually files required to reproduce the bug. This is a good way to have your bug report processed by Debian maintainers.

Configuring a local mail client to send reports

reportbug can optionally send reports to the Debian bug tracker directly, provided a local mail transfer agent (MTA) is installed. It has to be configured to discuss with our mail server, in order to send mails on behalf of <>. You’ll need to ask us the mail account parameters of course!

Using nullmailer

If you do not have the use of a local MTA, a simple alternative is to use nullmailer. Unlike most of MTA software, it is not able to send emails on its own and just acts as a relay to the real mail server. It is dead easy to configure. First of all, install it, for example on a Debian system:

$ sudo apt-get install nullmailer

You then have to configure the following two files:

  • /etc/nullmailer/adminaddr → contains the machine administrator email, you can set either your own email or <>, it can be empty as well
  • /etc/nullmailer/remotes → the remote mail server and account to be used

The first file contains nothing but the email address while the second one should contain one line of the form:

SERVER smtp --port=PORT --user=USER --pass=PASSWD

Ask us the real parameters! It is also recommended to put a real domain name in the file /etc/mailname, for example It will be used in case of missing domain name in a recipient.

Finally you can test email sending using the built-in nullmailer command nullmailer-inject:

nullmailer-inject [-a] [-b] [-e] [-f sender] [-h] [recipient [recipient ...]]

For example:

echo blabla | sudo nullmailer-inject -f

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