Q: How to install latest XBMC on Debian?
A: Just run “apt-get install xbmc”
The package is well tested on amd64, i386 and armhf, and it is now built on powerpc and armel, too. If you would like to see your favorite architecture running XBMC, please check the build logs and submit a patch fixing the build to the BTS.
… available from unstable, and hopefully soon from testing, too!
The longer story:
The xbmc package has been uninstallable and unbuildable in Debian unstable for quite some time. Mainly due to differing preferences of the XBMC project and Debian.
Original XBMC source includes several embedded libraries, some patched to work with XBMC perfectly and to provide the best user experience the XBMC project prefers building XBMC with those libraries.
In Debian, on the other hand, the recommended practice is not embedding libraries, but using the packaged versions instead to reduce the amount of security updates in case a library needs a security related fix, to save space on mirrors and to avoid divergence between the embedded versions of the libraries.
One consequence of using externally packaged libraries is the need for making XMBC work with newer versions of the external libraries even when the embedded one would still work perfectly or (in some cases) there are even breakages due to changing APIs or new bugs in the library.
XBMC depends on many libraries and the changes to them in Debian used to break one or another XBMC use case from time to time. The XBMC project received many direct bug reports from users of the Debian-shipped XBMC package which were harder than necessary to handle due to the lack of clear differentiation from the .deb packages provided directly by
them and using the embedded libraries.
To help both users and developers the xbmc package starts using the “XBMC from Debian” name on the main screen and in the logs, the version number used inside the application is set to the Debian package’s version, and README.Debian directs users of the package to Debian’s BTS instead of XBMC’s forums.
The most notable difference between XBMC and “XBMC from Debian” is that XBMC uses
its embedded patched FFmpeg, while “XBMC from Debian” uses libav. If movies play too slow, too fast, without sound or too loud, you should definitely check BTS first.
Happy Holidays and don’t stay too much in front of the screen if “XBMC from Debian” happens to work for hours without any crash!
I was playing with faketime the last few days mainly to implement features needed by ReproducibleBuilds, which is an initiative in Debian for providing binary packages that can be regenerated with the exact same content. Some build steps place timestamps in the resulting binaries, thus we may have to make time perceived by the build process move at a deterministic rate starting from a predetermined point in time.
This is why faketime got support for advancing time with each time(), gettimeofday(), etc. call. Another approach would be recording timestamps perceived by the first build and replaying them in the same order to successive builds. If the build is deterministic apart from the timestamps, this should result in the same binary package for each build.
While playing with faketime I could not resist implementing a few things which may not have been absolutely important for reproducible builds, but were so much fun. The nanosecond resolution of timestamps made games playable at slower or faster speeds making very hard games easier or easy games harder. Jump’n'bump just became insanely funny at 200% speed:
faketime -f "+0 x2" jumpnbump
Speeding up sleep()-s can also be useful in daily work. If your application calls sleep() often it may significantly slow down testing, but faketime is now able to shorten sleeps, too, speeding up testing such applications!
I’m proud that my country is actively fighting against the spreading of GMO crops: http://www.exposingthetruth.co/hungary-gmo-crops/
Kai Willadsen has already called for help in May to keep support for more exotic VCS-s alive, but no one stepped up for the three dropped ones.
If you would like to use Meld with Arch, Codeville or RCS in the future, it is Your time to step up and help!
In an attempt to provide more widely available content visible for the whole Internet instead of posting to random social media sites I just started writing this blog.