Daily Debian Package
What is it ?
Many many times, I stumbled upon useful Debian packages through chance alone. There are so many Debian packages that it's impossible to know what each does. Of course, all the major packages are well-known, but there are many little known packages that might be very useful.
There was the Debian Package a Day's Journal
, but it was not enough in my opinion. Personally, I prefer to receive information in my mailbox. That's why I wrote a small Perl script, called through a crontab, that sends an e-mail to a mailing-list every day with the description of a random Debian package.
How to subscribe ?
To subscribe to Daily Debian Package a day, simply go to http://the-doors.enix.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/daily-debian-package
and subscribe through the manager's interface.
How does it work ?
A Perl script is called every day by Cron. The Perl script downloads the new Packages.bz2 files from ftp.fr.debian.org. Currently, it downloads the Packages files from main in binary-i386 and non-free in binary-i386. Both files are merged, and a custom Category
tag is added to each package so that we know if the package comes from main
Then, the scripts randomly selects a package and checks if the package has not already been selected. If it has, then an other random package is chosen until a not-previously described package is selected.
Once we have the name of the package, we find its descriptions in the Packages file, format a mail, and send it.
The perl script is available : ./pub/code/perl/package-day.pl
(of course released under the terms of the GNU General Public License
). I am sure it is not perfectly written, because I am not a Perl guru, but at least it seems to be working. Don't hesitate to send in your comments, suggestions or bug reports, I am always happy to learn something new !