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Alexander Chernyakhovsky

Account nameachernya
OpenPGP fingerprint3224 C446 9D7D F8F3 D6F4 1A02 BBC7 56DD BE59 5F6B
StatusDebian Developer, uploading since 2014-09-01

Short Biography

My first experience with GNU/Linux was around 1997 with Red Hat Linux. Both of my parents were computer science graduate students at the time, and needed a computer that had a similar environment to the UNIX machines they had in lab, which were various SPARC workstations at the time, with a select few Linux workstations.

Over time, I learned the strange computer interface---everything from logging in at the console and running "startx" to starting up the ppp0 link with the modem and using ssh. I was astounded that such a system could be Free, and wanted to contribute. I learned to program in C, C++ and Java, and started working on my own toy projects, but lacking access to the OSS community in the suburbs of Ohio, I didn't know what to do next.

It wasn't until much later, with the introduction of the modern Fedora project that I started reporting bugs into the bug trackers, sometimes with patches attached. However, my contributions to F/LOSS projects remained limited until I became a student at MIT in 2010, where I met many Debian and Ubuntu contributors through SIPB, MIT's student computing club.

At a Debian Bug Squashing Party in January 2011, I complained about byobu-2.80-1 failing to install on squeeze to lfaraone and paultag, who quickly looked it up in the PTS, turned around and said to me: "hey, byobu is orphaned, want to adopt it?" Not quite sure what this meant at the time, I agreed, and prepared an SRU that fixed the packaging, and eventually became the maintainer for byobu. I have since become a DM, contributing to config-package-dev, hesiod; running testing and reporting bugs, and in general learning the Debian way.

I continue to be a Fedora user, and am also a Fedora Packager. I am the maintainer of mosh and rubygem-mysql2 in Fedora, as well as a maintainer of the, which is an official Fedora mirror. (We're currently working on adding to the Debian mirror list as well. It appears that we forgot to actually finish the process, despite mirroring Debian since the beginning.)

I'm also a maintainer of Debathena, a Debian derivative specifically tailored for the MIT Athena computing environment. Debathena is a set of add-on packages available for Debian and Ubuntu that make it easy to use a computer with Athena resources by automatically configuring services such as OpenAFS, Kerberos, and Zephyr.

I'm interested in keeping Debian up-to-date with new packages and the latest versions of existing packages. As a part of this, I'm more than happy to interact with our counterparts in Ubuntu, porting packages that only exist there back to Debian, as I currently do with Byobu. I'm also interested in reproducable builds amd the related infrastructure; I am currently working with the other Debathena maintainers on a set of scripst that will allow us to build from-scratch (bootstrap) Debathena against a new suite of Debian/Ubuntu, while also doing bookkeeping in our git repositories. I believe the tools we're working on may be of use to the general Debian community.

Personal history

Applicant From To Applying for Progress AM Advocate(s)
achernya 2 Feb 2014 1 Sep 2014 Debian Developer, uploading (done) Completed jackyf lfaraone

Advocate history

Started Last Target Applicant UID Status AM
2016-09-07 2016-10-04 DD, upl. Benjamin Kaduk bjk Collecting requirements christoph
Applicant From To Applying for Progress AM Advocate(s)
bbaren 18 Apr 2016 24 Dec 2016 Debian Developer, uploading (done) Completed pjb achernya