Annotation of wikisrc/projects/code-in.mdwn, revision 1.35

1.1       asau        1: # Google Code-In (GCI) project ideas
1.28      jdf         3: ## Introduction
                      4: For the application for [Google Code-In 2012](, and as a starting point for people who want to start working on NetBSD, here is a list of tasks to be fulfilled.
1.25      mbalmer     5: 
1.28      jdf         6: All the tasks should be completable within hours or up to three days. To get an idea of how much a single task should be and what kind of they could be, look at [this page](
1.25      mbalmer     7: 
1.28      jdf         8: Even if you don't want to attend the Code-In, you can use this as a starting point. In most cases, the work needs some research in order to be completed. Just write a mail to one of the [mailing lists]( you think is suiting (if you don't find any, just pick netbsd-users) and ask for more details.
1.26      asau        9: 
1.35    ! jdf        10: We will provide a [Virtualbox]( image for testing, such that you don't have to spend time on installing the system when you want to complete a task where you need NetBSD running.
        !            11: 
1.28      jdf        12: Previous events by Google: [Code-In 2010](, [Ghop 2007](
1.25      mbalmer    13: 
1.34      jdf        14: Previous organizations accepted for Code-In: [Code-In 2010]( [Code-In 2011](
1.35    ! jdf        16: There is [information from Google]( about what is suitable as a task for Code-In.
        !            17: The most important part is to make the task easy enough: It should take approximately two hours of an experienced contributor to complete a single task. There are no difficulties, all tasks should approximately have the same difficulty.
        !            18: 
1.28      jdf        19: ## Goals as stated by Google
                     20: 1. **Code**: Tasks related to writing or refactoring code
                     21: 1. **Documentation/Training**: Tasks related to creating/editing documents and helping others learn more
                     22: 1. **Outreach/Research**: Tasks related to community management, outreach/marketing, or studying problems and recommending solutions
                     23: 1. **Quality Assurance**: Tasks related to testing and ensuring code is of high quality
                     24: 1. **User Interface**: Tasks related to user experience research or user interface design and interaction
1.33      jdf        26: ## Used tags
1.29      jdf        27: If you want to search for a tag, just search this site for "Tag: $TAGNAME".
                     28: Used tags are (categories are not tagged):
1.31      jdf        29: 
1.29      jdf        30: * *man* - tasks related to writing on or working with manpages
                     31: * *network* - tasks related to networking (including firewalls)
                     32: * *system* - tasks related to the system itself, either kernel or system level things
                     33: * *service* - tasks involving services running on the system (as compared to *system*)
                     34: * *overview* - tasks related to getting and documenting an overview
                     35: * *howto* - tasks involving the creation of a howto
                     36: * *comparison* - tasks involving the comparison of different solutions
                     37: * *research* - tasks involving active research by the student
                     38: * *ui* - tasks involving the user interface (mostly graphical)
                     39: * *graphics* - tasks related to creating graphics
1.33      jdf        41: ## Prerequisites
                     42: Altough there are several tasks involving prerequisites, you should read the text for the amount they are necessary in. Maybe there is a Latex prerequisite, but we could provide you with the Latex knowledge you need to fulfill the task.
1.29      jdf        43: 
1.34      jdf        44: For all the tasks involving prerequisites, you should bring in some experience in this field (like typesetting at all for Latex, and minor or very small coding work in the required languages for the coding tasks). We will answer you questions regarding the actual coding, so don't hesitate to ask for a task when you do not fully fulfill the prerequisites.
1.33      jdf        46: ## Proposed tasks
1.28      jdf        47: ### Documentation
1.29      jdf        49: * **Task: Describe the format of usermgmt.conf**: The file usermgmt.conf contains default values used by user management tools (like useradd(8)). But currently, the manpage usermgmt.conf(5) contains only a description of the fields, but not the format of the file itself. So review code about what is possible (spaces, tabs, etc.) and create an EXAMPLE section.  
1.28      jdf        50:   The file can be seen here: [usermgmt.conf(5)](  
1.29      jdf        51:   *Tag*: man  
                     52:   *Tag*: system
1.28      jdf        53: 
1.29      jdf        54: * **Task: Create an overview of NetBSD documentation**: NetBSD has a variety of documentation stored everywhere in the web. On the one hand, there's the website with single articles, the NetBSD Guide, the pkgsrc Guide, documentation in /usr/, the NetBSD wiki, some important mailing list posts, manpages, other mdoc documents, something stored inside the code, etc.  
                     55:   In an attempt to gather documentation for NetBSD and provide a nicer entry point for beginners, this task is about gathering the points where documentation lies (with the full path), what language it is written in, what it is about (just a rough overview), and how much it is.  
                     56:   For the final goal, see [this mailing list post](  
1.28      jdf        57:   If you want to do this task, get in touch with us such that we can provide you with basic information where to start.  
1.29      jdf        58:   *Tag*: overview
1.28      jdf        59: 
1.29      jdf        60: * **Task: Howto: How to get a graphical environment on NetBSD**: NetBSD is a very sleek operating system, delivering an X server (and the mandatory twm), but nothing else. As most people don't like twm, they install another graphical environment.  
1.35    ! jdf        61:   But how do you do so?  
1.29      jdf        62:   This task is about creating a howto to install graphical environments after the installation. You should provide screenshots or screendumps (when still being on the console) and describe which configuration files have to be modified, which packages should be installed, which are there after the instalation and which can be added afterwards (special editors, etc.), and so on.  
1.28      jdf        63:   The package light-desktop should be stressed in this documentation.  
1.29      jdf        64:   *Tag*: ui  
                     65:   *Tag*: howto
1.28      jdf        66: 
1.29      jdf        68: * **Task: Create an overview of the NetBSD server layout**: If you're on a NetBSD mirror, after traversing into the tree you'll see various directories that seem to do the same.  
1.28      jdf        69:   You have to traverse the directories of a NetBSD server ( might be the best one, as it is *the* reference), find out which directories have which meaning, and document that. In the end, you should think about a good ASCII representation of a directory tree and realize it.  
1.29      jdf        70:   *Tag*: research  
                     71:   *Tag*: overview
1.28      jdf        72: 
1.29      jdf        73: * **Task: Create an overview of the NetBSD releases**: As every project with release engineering, it is difficult for a beginner to know which releases are the current ones, how long will a branch be supported, what are the actual branche names and what is the actual change in a minor or in a major version, what about binary compatibility, and where can I get information all in all?  
1.28      jdf        74:   This task is about writing a small article explaining the release engineering of NetBSD.  
1.29      jdf        75:   *Tag*: research  
                     76:   *Tag*: overview
1.28      jdf        77: 
1.29      jdf        78: * **Task: Create an overview of the NetBSD src layout**: There is the manpage hier(7), which describes the directory layout of a running NetBSD system.  
                     79:   To make it easier for beginners to find things inside src, an equivalent document for the sources of NetBSD.  
1.28      jdf        80:   Even if you're not fond with mdoc, researching this and gathering the information (e.g. in plain ASCII or markdown) would be a great benefit, and somebody who likes mdoc can then convert it to a system manpage.  
1.29      jdf        81:   *Tag*: research  
                     82:   *Tag*: overview
1.28      jdf        83: 
1.29      jdf        84: * **Task: Howto: Update the system from binaries**: There is the new tool written in shell named sysupgrade (to be found in pkgsrc/sysutils/sysupgrade), which updates the system in binaries for you. Though it is nice, you may have reasons to not use it for an update (e.g. non-standard systems, or some components may not change).  
                     85:   This is why you should document the single tasks sysupgrade does (and why) and fill it with examples, in the end creating an howto which resembles the work done by sysupgrade.  
1.28      jdf        86:   [sysupgrade usage](  
1.30      jdf        87:   *Tag*: howto  
1.29      jdf        88:   *Tag*: research
1.28      jdf        89: 
1.29      jdf        90: * **Task: Howto: Install additional software in NetBSD**: With NetBSD, you have three major ways to install additional software: pkgsrc, pkg_add and pkgin.  
1.28      jdf        91:   Which one is to use for which use case, what are their benefits, their merits? Document them, and give a small introduction of the needed tools and their usage (package installation, package deletion, package information).  
1.29      jdf        92:   *Tag*: howto  
1.30      jdf        93:   *Tag*: system  
1.29      jdf        94:   *Tag*: service
1.28      jdf        95: 
1.29      jdf        96: * **Task: Howto: Dual-boot NetBSD**: Having NetBSD not only as the single operating system, even if only for trying, is a common setup.  
                     97:   Of course you can dual-boot NetBSD with its internal bootloader as well as with grub and grub2.  
1.28      jdf        98:   These possibilities should be documented, and a howto how to dual-boot NetBSD should be created, for any scenario (NetBSD installed before main OS, and main OS installed before NetBSD).  
1.29      jdf        99:   *Tag*: howto  
                    100:   *Tag*: research  
                    101:   *Tag*: system
1.28      jdf       102: 
1.29      jdf       103: * **Task: Howto: Encrypt the hard disk with NetBSD**: NetBSD has its very nice cryptographic device driver cgd. Apart from being already described in the [guide](  
                    104:   An explicit howto how to do this (in short) and how to do this during the installation, is the issue of this task.  
1.28      jdf       105:   Though cgd will be in sysinst for the next version of NetBSD, the current ones are still without, so there should be a special emphasis of how to add cgd during system installation.  
1.29      jdf       106:   *Tag*: howto  
                    107:   *Tag*: system
1.28      jdf       108: 
1.29      jdf       109: * **Task: Howto: Running usermanagement with LDAP and Kerberos**: Having NetBSD being a server is a common setup. Additionally to all the LDAP and Kerberos setup tutorials in the web, an explicit tutorial how to use NetBSD as an LDAP and Kerberos server would be nice.  
1.28      jdf       110:   This means you shouldn't reproduce all the other tutorials about the gory internals, but rather describe what has to be done which is NetBSD-specific (which packages have to be installed, where their configuration files lie, etc.) and just a short chapter about what is needed for the rest, with a reference to the original OpenLDAP and Heimdal/MIT documentation.  
1.29      jdf       111:   *Tag*: howto  
1.30      jdf       112:   *Tag*: service  
1.29      jdf       113:   *Tag*: system
1.28      jdf       114: 
1.29      jdf       115: * **Task: Howto: Running a webserver with Apache**: As well as the aforementioned task with OpenLDAP and Kerberos, a howto what to do with Apache in NetBSD would be good.  
1.28      jdf       116:   This should also include a reference to the already included bozohttpd, which may be suited better in some cases.  
1.30      jdf       117:   *Tag*: howto  
                    118:   *Tag*: service  
1.29      jdf       119:   *Tag*: system
1.28      jdf       120: 
1.29      jdf       121: * **Task: Howto: Using LVM to manage your disks**: There is already a [chapter about the logical volume manager in NetBSD](  
1.28      jdf       122:   This task is about not having a whole chapter about it, but rather a small and comprehensive howto how you would manage logical volumes with NetBSD instead of reading through the whole chapter.  
1.29      jdf       123:   *Tag*: howto  
                    124:   *Tag*: system
1.28      jdf       125: 
1.34      jdf       126: * **Task: Howto: Protecting your system with veriexec**: There already is [a chapter in the Guide]( about veriexec, but there is no comprehensive guide how to activate it and how to check in all files in the distribution (there is [veriexecgen(8)]( for this.  
                    127:   Your task is to write a howto describing evrything a user needs to know and needs to do to have a secure system with veriexec.  
1.35    ! jdf       128:   *Tag*: howto  
1.34      jdf       129:   *Tag*: system
1.29      jdf       131: * **Task: Intro: Disk and partition management with NetBSD**: Additionally to the gpt and mbr confusion, NetBSD has two other systems that add complexity to disk management: Disk wedges (dk(4)) and Unix disklabels (disklabel(5)).  
1.28      jdf       132:   You should write an article that introduces the reader to these systems, how they interact, and what their use cases are.  
1.29      jdf       133:   *Tag*: howto  
                    134:   *Tag*: system
1.1       asau      135: 
1.35    ! jdf       136: * **Task: Rewrite system configuration in the guide**: January this year, we got a [new configuration menu for the installer](
        !           137:   The chapter in the guide about system configuration is still [the old one](
1.28      jdf       138:   Your task is to rewrite this paragraph, add a new screenshot such that it fits the new configuration menu.  
1.30      jdf       139:   *Tag*: howto  
1.29      jdf       140:   *Tag*: ui
1.14      plunky    141: 
1.29      jdf       142: * **Task: Convert articles from the website to wiki articles**: There are several articles on the website (like [this one]( which should be converted to wiki articles.  
                    143:   On the way, you could separate obsolete articles from newer ones.  
1.28      jdf       144:   Though this work could also partially be done by a tool like pandoc, the articles on the website have different format: Sometimes docbook, sometimes html, sometimes a mix of them. And pandoc doesn't result in such good results as hand-conversion might do.  
1.29      jdf       145:   *Tag*: wiki
1.28      jdf       146: 
1.29      jdf       147: * **Task: Convert the NetBSD Guide from DocBook to Markdown**: There are already tools to convert docbook to markdown (e.g. pandoc), so they have to be applied. The results have to be checked whether they are useful, and then every chapter should be a single wiki article, with one overview, such that the user optimally doesn't see the difference between the website and the wiki guide.  
                    148:   [The guide](, [the sources](  
                    149:   *Tag*: wiki
1.28      jdf       150: 
1.29      jdf       151: * **Task: Convert installation notes to markdown**: Currently, the [installation notes]( are constructed with mdoc from distrib/notes.  
                    152:   The task is to research whether it is possible to convert these articles to markdown, and, if possible, do so.  
                    153:   There might be many inclusions etc. to get the original structure, but even the result of *what* has to be done without the actual conversion would be neat.  
1.30      jdf       154:   *Tag*: wiki  
1.29      jdf       155:   *Tag*: man
1.28      jdf       156: 
1.29      jdf       157: * **Task: Describe how to run NetBSD headless**: For any server usage, you want to use NetBSD without access to keyboard, mouse or monitor. For these usages, you want to have access via ssh (or something similar, document that) or serial console.  
                    158:   Your task is to describe the steps which are necessary to run a NetBSD system headless, i.e. printing boot messages to serial port, enabling the bootloader on serial, enabling the serial port, describing the possible options how to do so, which security measures should  be taken.  
                    159:   You should also consider systems which don't even have a serial port, i.e. what has to be done if you cannot watch a device start, but you *must* go sure it will come up and you have some sort of access (like a router).  
1.30      jdf       160:   *Tag*: howto  
1.29      jdf       161:   *Tag*: system
                    163: * **Task: Describe how to use NetBSD as a bluetooth access point**: With bluetooth, you can easily connect your computer to a mobile phone and let the phone use the network connection of the computer.  
                    164:   Your task is to describe how to do this: Connecting NetBSD via bluetooth to your phone and then provide different services (especially file transfer and network connection).  
1.30      jdf       165:   *Tag*: howto  
                    166:   *Tag*: system  
                    167:   *Tag*: network  
1.29      jdf       168:   *Tag*: service
                    170: * **Task: Describe how to use NetBSD as an appliance**: NetBSD is often used for appliances, i.e. a small server serving only one single purpose. Though, there are no howtos describing how to set up a single appliance serving only one cause.  
                    171:   Though these howtos are targeted at creating a single appliance, they can also be used for other purposes.  
                    172:   Possible appliances would be:
                    173:   * **router** - NetBSD is very well suited for router appliances and often used for that. There is a special task which is about creating a howto how to configure npf and comparing the different firewall solutions NetBSD offers. This task would rather be about everything around, like the routing part, securing the machine, network management (e.g. for wireless access points), and maybe only one example configuration for the firewall (especially NATting). A good example for an existing appliance is pfSense
                    174:   * **file server** - NetBSD is also excellent as a file server, may it be either with nfs, smb, http, ftp or ftp over ssh as the transfer protocol. Your task would be to describe the packages which exist in pkgsrc and in NetBSD's base, and choose one special scenario for each protocol and give example configurations of the services. You should also mention RAIDframe, lvm and cgd briefly and what their use cases are. A good example for an existing appliance is FreeNAS or Apple Time Capsule (already running NetBSD).
                    175:   * **backup server** - though somewhat similar to a file server, a backup server has different requirements. On the one hand, you have to think about how to connect effectively for backups, e.g. with rsync or other special backup protocols. On the other hand, you have to take special care for data integrity and data security. You should also take file system snapshots into account.
1.30      jdf       176: 
1.34      jdf       177:   Every howto for an appliance is considered a single task.  
1.29      jdf       178:   As a special task, you could also create a shell script that fulfills the steps you mentioned in your howto, such that the user only has to execute this script to get an appliance. The prerequisite is only for this task.  
                    179:   If you can think of more possible appliances, maybe you can also use this as a task. If you want to work on a larger project (i.e. providing a whole derivate with one of these tasks), just tell us.  
                    180:   *Prerequisites*: sh  
                    181:   *Tag*: howto  
                    182:   *Tag*: research  
1.30      jdf       183:   *Tag*: service  
                    184:   *Tag*: system  
1.29      jdf       185:   *Tag*: network
                    187: * **Task: Describe how to backup NetBSD**: Though NetBSD is much like other Unixes in this respect, backup is still something you should consider specially for every operating system. Which tools are available in the base distribution for backupping, like dump(8) and restore(8)?  
                    188:   Which one suits better, pax(1), dump(8) or even just rsync or other special backup solutions? What are their use cases?  
                    189:   What is a full, a differential, an incremental backup? What is the estimated space usage of them, depending on the backups?  
                    190:   How would you restore your system after a crash, which steps have to be taken to get a working system again?  
                    191:   After reading the resulting article, the reader should be able to decide for a backup scheme and solution and implement it without further research.  
1.30      jdf       192:   *Tag*: howto  
                    193:   *Tag*: system  
1.29      jdf       194:   *Tag*: research
                    196: * **Task: Describe how to create a NetBSD live flash drive**: Flash drives become increasingly the source for operating system installations.  
                    197:   Though, you might want to try the operating system first by using a live system.  
                    198:   In this task you should create a live USB flash drive from NetBSD. You can use Jibbed or the installation USB flash drive images as an example how to do this.  
                    199:   In the end, there should be a howto which steps have to be taken to enable NetBSD to boot from a flash drive.  
1.30      jdf       200:   *Tag*: howto  
                    201:   *Tag*: research  
1.29      jdf       202:   *Tag*: system
                    204: * **Task: Describe how to become a voip provider**: Sip is a protocol used for VoIP communications.  
                    205:   NetBSD was sometimes tried as a VoIP server, but there has been no howto yet how to do this.  
                    206:   So, install an Asterisk or FreeSwitch or something else like that and describe how to use NetBSD as a VoIP server.  
1.30      jdf       207:   *Tag*: howto  
1.29      jdf       208:   *Tag*: service
1.28      jdf       209: 
1.29      jdf       211: ### Outreach/Research
1.28      jdf       212: 
1.29      jdf       213: * **Task: Howto: Getting in touch with NetBSD**: If you have a problem, there are several ways to get in touch with NetBSD people: BSD user groups, mailing lists, IRC, problem reports... Which one is the best for which issue?  
                    214:   Document the single methods for contacting others and categorize them by the task they're useful for.  
                    215:   *Tag*: howto  
1.30      jdf       216:   *Tag*: research  
1.29      jdf       217:   *Tag*: overview
1.28      jdf       218: 
1.29      jdf       219: * **Task: Compare init systems with each other**: Additional to the historical ones (SysV and BSD), systemd recently added another init system to the Unix world.  
                    220:   An objective comparison of these three systems (if there are other major ones, add them, maybe upstart?) would be nice. Not in the sense of showing their features side-by-side, but simply describing how they work and how you do things yourself.  
                    221:   In the end, you should have created a small article that enables anyone using one of these systems to switch to the other one just by reading this article.  
                    222:   *Tag*: comparison  
1.30      jdf       223:   *Tag*: research  
1.29      jdf       224:   *Tag*: system
1.28      jdf       225: 
1.35    ! jdf       226: * **Task: Investigate necessary documentation markup**: To choose the right markup language for documentation, you need a clear and comprehensive list of needed markup. While formats like Docbook or Latex support nearly everything, languages like Markdown or RestructuredText are more limited and have different dialects.  
        !           227:   Your task is to investigate which formats are needed for documentation (links, blockquotes for code, tables, monospace font, headlines in different sizes, etc.) and specify those.  
        !           228:   Formats like Docbook and mdoc are also providing semantical information, i.e. though they may display everything the same, e.g. the document knows whether a given monospace font written object is a filename, a command name, a function call, etc. Thus you also have to investigate whether these formats are used, and if their usage makes sense.  
        !           229:   In the end, you should provide a table of needed markup formats and of currently used semantical content of manpages, and whether they are in use somewhere.  
1.29      jdf       230:   *Tag*: research  
                    231:   *Tag*: overview
1.28      jdf       232: 
1.29      jdf       233: * **Task: Compare NetBSD with other operating systems of its kind**: NetBSD is an operating system which targets people who like the cleanness of a system, and mostly already have Unix or Linux experience.  
                    234:   As such, there are other operating systems which fall into the same audience as NetBSD does, which are at least Slackware, Arch Linux, Gentoo, OpenBSD, FreeBSD, DragonFly.  
                    235:   This task is about researching what other distros are out there which are close to NetBSD's principles and use cases ( might be a good starting point), and how they are different.  
                    236:   After having collected facts, maybe a simple overview of the community (what kind of people are there, what do they want?), you should create an article which lists all those and describes their differences to NetBSD.  
1.28      jdf       237:   You could also try interviewing some people what their view of the communities and the operating systems is and try to evolve your own opinion about them all.  
1.29      jdf       238:   *Tag*: comparison  
                    239:   *Tag*: research  
                    240:   *Tag*: system  
                    241:   *Tag*: overview
1.35    ! jdf       243: * **Task: Analyze NetBSD's users - research**: NetBSD is a very universal operating system. Some people run it on their 20 years old VAXen, others on their recent desktop computer or server, or on their tiny ARM box as a router.  
        !           244:   As the aforementioned task (which is rather about the others out there), this task is about doing an in-depth analyzation of NetBSD itself. What kind of users and what kind of developers are out there? Look at the mailing lists, the IRC and the bug reports to get an impression about the community and the developers and what their goals are.  
1.29      jdf       245:   This task is also about thinking about some statistical methods you could use. What data is available you could easily analyze, what are the metrics? Do other distributions have the same data available, so you could eventually run these statistics on other operating systems?  
1.35    ! jdf       246:   This task is not about the actual analysis, but only about the methods and measures.  
        !           247:   In the end, you should create a small paper (about two pages) describing the methods you use, the sources and their reasonation and usefulness.  
        !           248:   Besides being a gci task, thinking about these statistics, you could also create a nice website analyzing all kinds of distributions based on statistical methods.  
        !           249:   *Tag*: research  
        !           250:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           251:   *Tag*: overview
        !           252: 
        !           253: * **Followup Task: Analyze NetBSD's users - statistics**: This task is about applying the statistics you developed in the task before.  
        !           254:   You have to write some small tools or scripts that do the analysis you developed before, and then you have to write a two-paged paper about the results, the problems you actually faced when trying to do this task, but no interpretation.  
        !           255:   If you don't have the computing power or the resources to do the actual analysis, we can help you with that.  
        !           256:   *Tag*: research  
        !           257:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           258:   *Tag*: overview
        !           259: 
        !           260: * **Followup Task: analyze NetBSD's users - interpretation**: Finally, you have to interpret the results you got from before. As you were researching texts which people were writing personally, depending on their mood and ideas, you will be biased by the impressions you got.  
        !           261:   Now, you have to compare these impressions with your results. What are the right impressions, which are not? What is the overall image you should get from the NetBSD community after doing these tasks?  
        !           262:   You should write at least two pages of interpretation.  
        !           263:   *Tag*: research  
        !           264:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           265:   *Tag*: overview
        !           266: 
        !           267: * **Task: Analyze NetBSD's focus (in source files) - research**: As the foregoing task, you have to research statistical methods to find places where NetBSD has much effort in. There are already tools and methods to do this, but we want you to actually analyze the semantical focus of NetBSD.  
        !           268:   What is being most worked on (and in which timescale), comparing kernel to userland, comparing the effort, the lines of code, the frequency of commits, comparing the several subsystems of the kernel, etc. You should also look at bug reports for specific subsystems, and the responsiveness of the people fixing those bugs.   
        !           269:   You should look at the ports of the NetBSD CVS repository to fossil and git to run your methods locally.  
        !           270:   You should again write a reasonation about what you differentiate, which methods you use and your results, defending them.  
        !           271:   *Tag*: research  
        !           272:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           273:   *Tag*: overview
        !           274: 
        !           275: * **Followup Task: Analyze NetBSD's focus (in source files) - statistics**: This task is about applying the methods you developed in the task before.  
        !           276:   You should download the ports of the CVS repository to git or fossil ([see here]( and develop scripts to run the analysis.  
        !           277:   In the end, you should present your results (without interpretation) and defend them in a small two-paged paper.  
        !           278:   *Tag*: research  
        !           279:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           280:   *Tag*: overview
        !           281: 
        !           282: * **Followup Task: Analyze NetBSD's focus (in source files) - interpretation**: Before, you were occupied with developing statistical methods and applying them.  
        !           283:   But the most important part about statistics is its interpretation - without, everybody will see only the results he likes himself.  
        !           284:   So you have to interpret the results you got before, comparing them with the overall image NetBSD usually has (see also the statistics task about NetBSD's users) and comparing it with the reality. Where do you see possible improvements, which parts of the source are not cared for enough, which are?  
        !           285:   Write this down in a paper at least two pages long.  
        !           286:   *Tag*: research  
        !           287:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           288:   *Tag*: overview
        !           289: 
        !           290: * **Task: Analyze NetBSD documentation's focus - research**: This is again a statistical task.  
        !           291:   You have to investigate methods to analyze the various sources of NetBSD documentation (see the foregoing task, "Create an overview of NetBSD documentation"), and categorize them. Then, you have to measure somehow their content (note that this is not possible by just counting lines or words, as e.g. technical descriptions and tables have much more words in them than rather prosaic documentation).  
        !           292:   As with the others, you are expected to write a two-paged paper about your used methods and sources, defending their usefulness.  
        !           293:   *Tag*: research  
        !           294:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           295:   *Tag*: overview
        !           296: 
        !           297: * **Followup Task: Analyze NetBSD documentation's focus - statistics**: This task is about applying the methods developed before.  
        !           298:   You should write scripts to actually do the analysis you proposed before, and afterwards writing down your results in a two-paged paper.  
        !           299:   *Tag*: research  
        !           300:   *Tag*: comparison  
        !           301:   *Tag*: overview
        !           302: 
        !           303: * **Followup Task: Analyze NetBSD documentation's focus - interpretation**: In this task, you have to do the final goal of the research before: The interpretation.  
        !           304:   Based on the results you got before, you should write down your personal interpretation of what you got. You should also mix these results together with the overall impression you got when doing Code-In things, or what you heard about NetBSD at all and what you did with other operating systems.  
        !           305:   A two-paged paper would be the goal, but if you have more ideas, don't try to fit them into two pages.  
1.29      jdf       306:   *Tag*: research  
1.30      jdf       307:   *Tag*: comparison  
1.29      jdf       308:   *Tag*: overview
1.21      asau      309: 
1.29      jdf       310: * **Task: Compare firewall solutions in NetBSD**: NetBSD has several firewall solutions on board: ipf, npf, pf, even more (you should research that).  
                    311:   For the beginner, it is not clear what they are capable of, how fast they are and what their syntaxes look like.  
                    312:   In this task you should research the differences of these firewalls, create some examples that do the same (so you can view them side-by-side) and provide links to further documentation.  
                    313:   *Tag*: comparison  
1.30      jdf       314:   *Tag*: network  
1.29      jdf       315:   *Tag*: research
1.2       asau      316: 
1.35    ! jdf       317: * **Task: Research terminfo(5) keycodes**: terminfo(5) is a library to describe the capabilities of a terminal.  
        !           318:   As such, it also has a code for all the special function keys that are on a keyboard. The new terminfo(5) manpage lists all these keys, but not their function. You have to research what the single keys do and insert the description into the list.  
        !           319:   This bug has also been reported as "lib/47090 - terminfo(5) lacks descriptions for key definitions".  
        !           320:   *Tag*: research  
        !           321:   *Tag*: man
        !           322: 
1.21      asau      323: 
1.28      jdf       324: ### Quality Assurance
1.21      asau      325: 
1.29      jdf       326: * **Task: Document integrated tools in NetBSD**: Apart from the famous web server and ftp server choices, there are smaller ones already integrated to NetBSD, as well as other smaller tools a user should know.  
                    327:   The goal is to create a comprehensive (!) list of full software packages that are already included in the base distribution.  
                    328:   In the document src/doc/3RDPARTY there is already a list of imported software, but there are more tools which are NetBSD-inherent themselves or contained in a larger package that is just listed as a whole there.  
                    329:   *Tag*: overview  
                    330:   *Tag*: research
1.21      asau      331: 
1.29      jdf       332: * **Task: Try out various desktop scenarios, report errors**: Modern desktop environments like Xfce, KDE, Gnome or LXDE are mostly written for Linux. As such, it is important to try them on NetBSD and report their errors. Plus, checking the ease of installation via pkgsrc - which packages have to be installed, how intuitive is their name, their installation? Everything should be as easy as possible.  
                    333:   This task also refers to the task of creating a tutorial - maybe doing this first, and then creating the tutorial would be nice. The tutorial could either be updated on the fly when the reported bugs are corrected, or will be held back until the process is as easy as it should be.  
                    334:   This also includes bug-checking for light-deskop, the preferred package for a NetBSD desktop.  
                    335:   *Tag*: ui  
                    336:   *Tag*: research
                    338: * **Task: Make NetBSD a music or video player**: NetBSD could as well serve as a music (mpd) or video player. You have to research which packages are needed for such a use case, and document it in a tutorial.  
                    339:   Ideally, create a pkgsrc meta package including all the dependencies.  
                    340:   Report bugs you find on the way.  
1.30      jdf       341:   *Tag*: ui  
1.29      jdf       342:   *Tag*: research
                    345: * **Task: Describe how NetBSD boots**: Build NetBSD on any system (especially non-NetBSD) and try to create a bootable medium without using makefs(8) or integrated wrappers.  
                    346:   Creating a bootable disk is possible, but difficult and there is no comprehensive information about this. You have to try much until you get the real results.  
                    347:   The affected tools are
                    348:   * fdisk(8)
                    349:   * installboot(8)
                    350:   * disklabel(8)
                    351:   * gpt(8)
1.31      jdf       352: 
1.29      jdf       353:   In the end of this task, a small howto and some corrections for the manpages of the affected tools should be there.  
1.30      jdf       354:   *Tag*: system  
1.29      jdf       355:   *Tag*: howto
                    357: * **Task: Describe how to boot NetBSD on a gpt disk**: Currently, NetBSD supports booting from a gpt partition, but you cannot know how.  
                    358:   This task is about creating documentation how to use the tool gpt(8) and maybe installboot(8) how to create GPT labels, how they interact with MBRs as created by fdisk(8), how wedges work on this, and how you would make it bootable.  
1.35    ! jdf       359:   You should also describe which problems you have and what people might edge on when trying to create a gpt-bootable disk.  
1.29      jdf       360:   *Tag*: howto  
                    361:   *Tag*: system
1.1       asau      362: 
1.29      jdf       363: * **Task: Howto: Configure npf**: The new NetBSD packet filter npf is a nice and well-scaling way to configure a firewall. Despite being there and functional, it does not have much documentation.  
                    364:   The manpage of npf.conf(5) gives an introduction, but nothing that could be used as a howto: [npf.conf(5)](  
                    365:   The howto should contain a step-by-step introduction about how npf works, but also an introduction to the technics of npf itself: What kind of rules and tables are there, how they are applied, etc.  
1.33      jdf       366:   There is already a [howto by rmind](, this would have to be converted and checked against errors, and extended.  
1.29      jdf       367:   *Tag*: howto  
                    368:   *Tag*: network
1.5       asau      369: 
1.35    ! jdf       370: * **Task: Using the framebuffer in NetBSD**: NetBSD has a framebuffer, but until now, it is not much used. The framebuffer can be used for showing nice fonts and resolutions in the console, to show a spashscreen while booting, etc., but there is no documentation.  
        !           371:   The genfb(4) and wsdisplay(4) manpages are a good start with this.  
        !           372:   Your task is to try using the framebuffer, document what you are doing and why, and report what is missing and where you have no idea how to go on.  
        !           373:   *Tag*: ui
        !           374:   *Tag*: system
        !           375: 
        !           376: * **Task: Research and write a Markdown style guide**: NetBSD is using Markdown for its wiki. To have a unified format of wiki pages, it would be nice if we had a style guide.  
        !           377:   Your task is to research whether other projects which are using Markdown have a style guide, and what it implies. You should also research the other style guides of NetBSD (for the website and for source), and then deduce a style guide for the NetBSD wiki for this.  
        !           378:   *Tag*: research  
        !           379:   *Tag*: ui
        !           380: 
        !           381: * **Task: Research POSIX compliance**: POSIX is the (more or less) standard all Unixes orient on. It describes libraries to use as well as binaries every Unix should have (like cp, mv) and their behaviour.
        !           382:   You can find the standard on the Internet. Your task is to look for any non-trivial manpage (i.e., more than a few options) and research whether the NetBSD behaviour of this tool or library conforms to POSIX or not.  
        !           383:   You should then insert this part into a list and document whether it complies to POSIX and if not, which differences are there.  
        !           384:   As it is hard to determine the difficulty of a single part of the standard, this will be measured in lines. For every 1000 lines of the NetBSD versions of the manpages, this is one task.  
        !           385:   The prerequisite is only for looking at libraries.  
        !           386:   *Prerequisite*: C (reading)  
        !           387:   *Tag*: research
        !           388: 
1.1       asau      389: 
1.29      jdf       390: ### Code
1.5       asau      391: 
1.35    ! jdf       392: * **Task: Create ATF tests**: [[atf]] is the automatic test framework for NetBSD. We strive to have automatic tests for all the important parts of our system: libraries, syscalls, binaries, etc.  
        !           393:   Your task is to write such tests. You should read the [[tutorial|atf]] about how to write an atf test, and then you can start testing things.  
        !           394:   As testing is an endless task, here are just a few ideas about which items could be tested:
        !           395:   * [[!template id=man name="atomic_ops" section="3"]]
        !           396:   * [[!template id=man name="cdbr" section="3"]] and [[!template id=man name="cdbw" section="3"]]
        !           397:   * [[!template id=man name="inet" section="3"]] and [[!template id=man name="inet_net" section="3"]]
        !           398:   * [[!template id=man name="ethers" section="3"]], [[!template id=man name="iso_addr" section="3"]] and [[!template id=man name="link_addr" section="3"]]
        !           399:   * [[!template id=man name="strtol" section="3"]], [[!template id=man name="strtoul" section="3"]] and [[!template id=man name="strtoull" section="3"]]
        !           400:   * [[!template id=man name="uuid" section="3"]]
        !           401: 
        !           402:   Though this task is originally rather considered quality assurance, the actual test writing is only coding work (whether the test succeeds or not, is up to the original author of the library or tool).  
        !           403:   Every *single written test* is considered as **one task**. If you think there is another test that should be added, but is not listed here, feel free to contact us.  
        !           404:   The tests should be written in either C or sh, depending on the test subject.  
        !           405:   *Prerequisites*: sh or C  
        !           406:   *Tag*: man  
        !           407:   *Tag*: research
        !           408: 
1.29      jdf       409: * **Task: Document different time structures**: We have several time structures like `time_t`, `struct timespec`, `struct timeval`, `struct tm` and so on. Document all of them as a time(5) manpage such that a programmer can see all of them at once, in comparison. As we have time zone sensitive and time zone independent representations, figuring out conversions between local time and UTC from manual pages is hard and should also be documented in that manpage.  
1.35    ! jdf       410:   *Prerequisites*: C (just reading)  
1.30      jdf       411:   *Tag*: man  
1.29      jdf       412:   *Tag*: system
1.1       asau      413: 
1.29      jdf       414: * **Task: Add an web interface to apropos**: Last year's Google Summer Of Code project was creating a new apropos(1). Though the current version already has a web interface, adding CSS and appropriate HTML to the web interface would be nice to integrate it to other websites.  
                    415:   Though the source code is written in C, C knowledge is not necessary. You just have to extract the HTML and pseudo-understand what the code around it does, i.e. in which cases the single actions are taken.  
                    416:   The file which would be modified is [apropos-utils.c](  
1.32      jdf       417:   *Prerequisites*: C CSS HTML  
1.30      jdf       418:   *Tag*: ui  
1.29      jdf       419:   *Tag*: graphics
1.1       asau      420: 
1.35    ! jdf       421: * **Task: Write apropos branch to search through Markdown documentation**: apropos(1) is a last summer's Google Summer Of Code project implemented in NetBSD. It allows a relevance-based search through manpages written in mdoc.  
        !           422:   As maybe Markdown is going to be in the source tree, we want to extend apropos to also be able to search through generic documentation articles.  
        !           423:   Your task would be to research the possibility of creating another binary that is able to search through markdown documentation pages, creating its own index file (mandb).  
1.29      jdf       424:   If you are having fun with this, thinking about ways how to combine the two binaries into one single documentation search binary would be good.  
1.33      jdf       425:   [Mail announcint import of apropos](  
1.29      jdf       426:   *Prerequisites*: C  
                    427:   *Tag*: research  
                    428:   *Tag*: man
1.35    ! jdf       430: * **Task: Write a Markdown - Latex converter**: This task is not strictly for NetBSD, but another project named [libsoldout]( libsoldout is a markdown converter written in C and published under public domain.
1.33      jdf       431:   Though there are already other tools which would do this task, they either have a licence that is not usable by NetBSD or have too many dependencies (like pandoc).  
1.35    ! jdf       432:   Your task is to write a converter from Markdown to Latex (or PDF, which might be a fairly large task and not suited for Code-In), which is just specifying some tags you use for inserting and putting it in C code.  
1.33      jdf       433:   You can take the [html]( or the [mdoc]( converter as a template for this. Though this task seems large, the task itself is rather small. You have to analyze the converters for mdoc and html and replace their tags by the appropriate Latex ones.  
1.35    ! jdf       434:   If you're not as good with Latex, feel free to ask for the tags that are to replace. Latex is not a strict prerequisite!  
1.33      jdf       435:   *Prerequisites*: C Latex  
1.35    ! jdf       436:   *Tag*: research  
        !           437:   *Tag*: wiki  
1.33      jdf       438:   *Tag*: ui
1.1       asau      439: 
1.35    ! jdf       440: * **Followup task: Create NetBSD slide templates (Latex)**: Many people are used to using the [Latex typesetting system]( beamer package for presentations instead of OpenOffice.  
        !           441:   Thus, you should convert the OpenOffice template created in the according User Interface task to a Latex template.  
        !           442:   This task is also a great chance to get used to the Latex package beamer or to Latex at all, it is usable for any presentations in school or university. So don't hesitate if you don't fulfill the prerequisite, if you want to learn, you can relatively fast do it and then complete this task.  
        !           443:   *Prerequisite*: Latex  
        !           444:   *Tag*: graphics
        !           445: 
        !           446: * **Task: Fix bug install/17792**: The problem in this bug report is clear: The function get_and_unpack_sets() in util.c calls the menu MENU_distmedium as long as the status is set to retry.  
        !           447:   The solution is to run this menu once before actually getting into this loop, before actually writing the changes to disk (see the file install.c or upgrade.c for an example).  
        !           448:   Though the user who is used to fetch its sources from more than one source will be confused about the changed order of the question, 99% of the people won't even notice it.  
        !           449:   *Prerequisite*: C  
        !           450:   *Tag*: system
        !           451: 
        !           452: * **Task: Fix bug bin/46579**: The problem in this bug report is already analyzed: There is a general dispatcher for the requested tasks of ifconfig. After fulfilling these tasks, ifconfig goes on to show information, but then, the interface doesn't exist anymore.  
        !           453:   You have to think of a clean way how to circumvent this, i.e. either catch non-existing devices before the task of ifconfig is done, or do a differentiation afterwards such that the error is not printed anymore.  
        !           454:   ifconfig is a very complex tool, so expect a high difficulty from this task, not in the coding part, but in the analyzation part!  
        !           455:   *Prerequisite*: C  
        !           456:   *Tag*: system
        !           457: 
        !           458: * **Task: Repair vnconfig(8)'s return codes**: vnconfig(8) is a tool to create virtual disk images. There was a (not officially filed) bug report that it sometimes returns success although it fails:
        !           459:   > qemu# vnconfig vnd0 not_existent_file ; echo $? ; : bad 
        !           460:   > vnconfig: not_existent_file: No such file or directory
        !           461:   > 0
        !           462:   > qemu# vnconfig vnd0 existent_file ; echo $? ;: good
        !           463:   > 0
        !           464:   > qemu#
        !           465:   In this task, you will go through the whole work of fixing a bug: You have to analyze the situation, find the source of that bug in the code, and finally fix it.  
        !           466:   *Prerequisite*: C  
        !           467:   *Tag*: system
        !           468: 
        !           469: * **Task: Fix bug bin/47089**: Apparently, the well-known tool mv(1) (for moving files around in the file system) does not return an appropriate error message when you try to move a mount point of a file system.  
        !           470:   In this task, you will go through the whole work of fixing a bug: You have to analyze the situation, find the source of that bug in the code, and finally fix it.  
        !           471:   *Prerequisite*: C  
        !           472:   *Tag*: system
        !           473: 
        !           474: * **Task: Fix bug bin/47065**: The shell returns a wrong error code when it should return an error (on a bad file descriptor).  
        !           475:   In this task, you will go through the whole work of fixing a bug: You have to analyze the situation, find the source of that bug in the code, and finally fix it.  
        !           476:   In this task, you will also learn much about how a shell internally works. This will help you definetely if you want to do shell programming some day, or just want to dig more into the internals of file descriptors.  
        !           477:   *Prerequisite*: C  
        !           478:   *Tag*: system
        !           479: 
        !           480: * **Task: Fix bug bin/41049**: The description of "usermod -g" in the manpage does not accord to its real behaviour. Actually, this has not been implemented, so you have the rather difficult task to write the implementation for this.  
        !           481:   You can use code from the other tools which deal with user and group modification, maybe you will find a place where nearly the same work has already been done.  
        !           482:   *Prerequisite*: C  
        !           483:   *Tag*: system
        !           484: 
1.34      jdf       485: 
1.29      jdf       486: ### User Interface
1.1       asau      487: 
1.35    ! jdf       488: * **Task: Create a concept for a documentation browser**: There are many possibilities to ship documentation together with the distribution. Most operating systems stick to providing their documentation PDF, HTML, cleartext, GNU info or manpages.  NetBSD currently uses various formats for documentation, but for this task, this doesn't matter.  
        !           489:   In case your system is offline (when the Internet connection shut down, or you are on your notebook), you want to have this information available.  
        !           490:   We want to write an offline documentation browser, but the whole user interface is unclear. What kind of links do you provide (remember: A browser might not be available)? How do you select them? By numbering them, by commandline (like vi), by selecting them with cursors? When using cursors, how do you browse? How would you implement a browser history?  
        !           491:   This task is not strictly user interface, you also have to research how it is possible. We want to reuse as many tools as possible (like less(1)) as they sometimes fulfill complicated tasks.  
        !           492:   In the end, we expect a declaration of how the user interface should look like, such that the programmer can directly start to program this interface. You should not only provide this declaration, but also a reasoning why this choice is the best one, and some conceptual drawings that show your interface "in action".  
        !           493:   If this task is interesting for you, we can support you also after Code-In if you want to write such a browser (in C), the actual language for the markup depending on a prior task.  
        !           494:   *Tag*: research  
        !           495:   *Tag*: wiki
        !           496: 
1.29      jdf       497: * **Task: Create NetBSD wallpapers**: Currently, there are nearly no NetBSD wallpapers. The combination of beastie, the flag and the old logo (daemons on old computers), plus the very smooth NetBSD colours (orange, grey, white) should be a resource for nice wallpapers.  
                    498:   If you're fine with drawing on a computer or graphical programs (like The Gimp or Photoshop), this might be a nice and very creative task for you.  
                    499:   *Tag*: graphics  
1.4       asau      500: 
1.29      jdf       501: * **Task: Create an icon set for NetBSD - research**: To provide a nice graphical user interface, as well as prettifying the wiki and the website, having some buttons and icons would be nice.  
                    502:   This task is about gathering and writing down what sizes are useful, and what kinds of icons are needed (and what they could be used for).  
1.35    ! jdf       503:   For this, you have to research what icons a current desktop environment uses (there are icons in /usr/share/icons) and then specify what motives are useful. You do not have to say there should be an icon for "file browser", but an icon for "a cupboard holding folders". The icons should stay generic.
1.29      jdf       504:   *Tag*: research  
                    505:   *Tag*: ui
1.4       asau      506: 
1.35    ! jdf       507: * **Followup Task: Create an icon set for NetBSD - graphics**: In addition to the previous task, creating those icons is still needed. You would have to think about an artwork concept which loosely orients on the NetBSD corporate colours (orange, grey, white), maybe even providing two colour sets (additionally orange, grey, black), how these icons should look overall and creating the single icons that are specified.  
        !           508:   The icons should be in a vector graphics format like as Inkscape creates, such that in the future, we can choose to produce hihgher resolution icons.  
        !           509:   As the whole icon set would clearly be too much work, this task is about creating **three icons of your choice** that have not yet been created, thus this task can be fulfilled multiple times.  
1.29      jdf       510:   *Tag*: graphics  
                    511:   *Tag*: ui
1.17      asau      512: 
1.29      jdf       513: * **Task: Create smaller NetBSD artwork**: NetBSD does not have much artwork. Except from the aforementioned wallpapers and icons sets, multiple smaller artworks would be nice as well.  
                    514:   This includes drawing comics, creating a CD label, the image of a flash drive with NetBSD on it or e.g. a Beastie with a NetBSD flash drive, such things.  
                    515:   If you want to do this task, even if you don't know what to do, just contact us. We can tell you some ideas what to do, and if you already have one, approve it is suited for us.  
                    516:   *Tag*: graphics
1.9       plunky    517: 
1.35    ! jdf       518: * **Task: Create NetBSD slide templates (OpenOffice)**: NetBSD developers often hold presentations on conferences like the EuroBSDCon, BSDCan, etc.  
        !           519:   Your task is to think of a non-intrusive design which still reminds people of NetBSD, but without focussing on that. After that, you create a template that can be downloaded, included and then simply used such that NetBSD presentations have a NetBSD branding.  
        !           520:   *Tag*: graphics
1.33      jdf       521: 
                    522: * **Task: Create a NetBSD book layout**: NetBSD has several articles that could and are converted to PDF. While the final conversion and its methods is another task, having a nice book layout is necessary.  
                    523:   In this task, you have to research the different styles a NetBSD article would need (i.e., code blocks, other blockquotes, special quotes for commands, for manpages, etc.) and everything around like a front page, the font, etc.  
                    524:   You can deliver the specification either as a Latex style or exactly written with some example images.  
                    525:   *Tag*: graphics  
1.32      jdf       526: 
1.34      jdf       527: * **Task: Create a NetBSD poster**: NetBSD advocacy material is used on fairies where NetBSD usually has its own booth. To make the presentation more attractive, a nice poster (in format A0) would be nice.  
                    528:   This task can be fulfilled multiple times. You can either create different posters advocating different aspects of NetBSD, or just create graphical posters.  
                    529:   *Tag*: graphics

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