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Programming Software IT Linux Technology

Linux Foundation Paving Way for New Kernel Developers 46

Jack Spine writes "The Linux Foundation has published a how-to document for developers who want to negotiate the hidden shoals of open source. According to both the Linux Foundation and the Open Source Consortium, developers can get frustrated with the processes in open source coding, especially for enterprise-class projects like Linux. 'A guide to the kernel development process' aims to encourage participation from new programmers by explaining what's involved. Some developers and businesses attempting to submit changes to the Linux kernel find themselves tangled up with the processes used, according to the guide, which was written by Jonathan Corbet, executive editor of lwn.net and himself a Linux developer."
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Linux Foundation Paving Way for New Kernel Developers

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  • direct link (Score:5, Informative)

    by larry bagina ( 561269 ) on Friday August 15, 2008 @06:12PM (#24622031) Journal
    here [linuxfoundation.org].
  • Re:How much skill? (Score:5, Informative)

    by gbjbaanb ( 229885 ) on Friday August 15, 2008 @06:48PM (#24622283)

    This one [sourceforge.net].

    Pick a project (you will have to filter the language to C for the more kernel-like projects), then offer to help out with some coding. The people running it should be happy for you to help out (just don't expect to suddenly become a respected developer until you've proven it) and should be able to provide you with more assistance in getting up to speed. Once there, you should have the confidence to tackle something more high-profile.

  • Re:slashdotted (Score:5, Informative)

    by LinuxScribe ( 158687 ) on Friday August 15, 2008 @07:04PM (#24622425)

    It's back up now. We just had to restart the server and turn on some caching goodness.


  • by LinuxScribe ( 158687 ) on Friday August 15, 2008 @07:18PM (#24622579)

    Mostly this is part of a larger effort by the Linux Foundation to make Linux development more accessible. There's a lot of interested folks out there who simply don't know the nuances of dealing with the kernel (and, perhaps, general free and open source) developers. This document will hopefully tear down any perceived curtains and allow ISVs and individual developers get a good idea of how to deal with the kernel.

    Brian Proffitt
    Community Manager
    Linux Developer Network

  • Re:How much skill? (Score:5, Informative)

    by flowsnake ( 1051494 ) on Friday August 15, 2008 @08:49PM (#24623251)
    The SourceForge Help Wanted [sourceforge.net] page is also a good place to look. Most of the projects looking for help aren't really top-tier projects, but they'd be a good way of building up reputation when the GP later wants to go for the big name projects.
  • Re:How much skill? (Score:3, Informative)

    by wellingj ( 1030460 ) on Friday August 15, 2008 @10:09PM (#24623617)

    5. Use Artistic Style [sourceforge.net] .

    There, fixed that for you.

  • Re:How much skill? (Score:3, Informative)

    by TheRaven64 ( 641858 ) on Saturday August 16, 2008 @07:18AM (#24625355) Journal

    Also don't forget that Sourceforge isn't the only place to find Free Software projects. A lot of us use GNA [gna.org] for our hosting, since it isn't quite so cluttered with ads and the entire platform they use is Free Software, so if we decide we don't like them we can move to our own server somewhere without changing the server-side components at all (GNA is run by FSF France and bandwidth is donated by the French ISP Free.fr).

    A good place to look for getting involved with projects is in the bugs database. Pick a bug, and see if you can reproduce it. Then see if you can narrow down the cause and produce a minimal test case. Then see if you can work out which bit of the code is causing the problems. Even if you don't fix it yourself, this information is helpful to the project and a really good learning experience since it forces you to read and understand other peoples' code. And if you fix the bug, most projects will be very happy.

    One thing to note is that most projects have their own set of coding conventions. If you send a patch, please observe these. I contribute to a couple of projects which have almost the exact opposite set of coding conventions and sometimes it's a little hard to remember to switch between them, but it's worth doing because it does make life easier for people reading the code in either project.

Don't sweat it -- it's only ones and zeros. -- P. Skelly