New ARM autobuilders

I am really upset by the way the ARM build daemons are managed. The packages are not uploaded regularly, with sometimes three days between two uploads. Well it should not be a problem, if packages that have failed to build due to some packages not uploaded fast enough (see for example python-gnome, or rkward) were requeued, but that’s actually not the case. Also last week, the build daemon named “cats” stopped to upload packages, despite it continued to build them. 11 days later, nothing has changed even after a mail to arm@buildd.debian.org. And I do not speak about build daemons building nothing.

All of that resulted in ARM being the slowest architecture to build packages. It looks like the ARM build daemon maintainer does not know the excellent page made by Jeroen.

As arm@buildd.debian.org is everything but responsive (well if you can assign a level of responsiveness to /dev/null), I have decided to act. I have installed QEMU on an 8-way Opteron machine, and created 8 emulated ARM machines, which 256MB of RAM and 10GB of disk for each, all running buildd + sbuild. Altogether those 8 emulated ARM machines should be faster than all the Debian ARM build daemons. I have setup a wanna-build database on my server. During the day it has built around 100 packages.

Yes I agree that real machines would be better, but I don’t have a stack of fast ARM machines at home. Anyway when you see random segfaults on the build daemons, or strange failures (that happen for weeks) on the build daemon named “netwinder“, you may think to that again.

Unfortunately the machine I use for that is only available for a few months, and I will have to stop the emulated machine then. I just hope that the situation with respect to the build daemons will improve, so that I can stop them even before.

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