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Packaging Guide

5. KDE Packaging

Packaging of KDE programs in Ubuntu is managed by the Kubuntu and MOTU teams. You can contact the Kubuntu team on the Kubuntu mailing list and #kubuntu-devel Freenode IRC channel. More information about Kubuntu development is on the Kubuntu wiki page.

Our packaging follows the practices of the Debian Qt/KDE Team and Debian KDE Extras Team. Most of our packages are derived from the packaging of these Debian teams.

5.1. Patching Policy

Kubuntu does not add patches to KDE programs unless they come from the upstream authors or submitted upstream with the expectation they will be merged soon or we have consulted the issue with the upstream authors.

Kubuntu does not change the branding of packages except where upstream expects this (such as the top left logo of the Kickoff menu) or to simplify (such as removing splash screens).

5.2. debian/rules

Debian packages include some additions to the basic Debhelper usage. These are kept in the pkg-kde-tools package.

Packages which use Debhelper 7 should add the --with=kde option. This will ensure the correct build flags are used and add options such as handling kdeinit stubs and translations:

%:
    dh $@ --with=kde

Some newer KDE packages use the dhmk system, an alternative to dh made by the Debian Qt/KDE team. You can read about it in /usr/share/pkg-kde-tools/qt-kde-team/2/README. Packages using this will include /usr/share/pkg-kde-tools/qt-kde-team/2/debian-qt-kde.mk instead of running dh.

5.3. Translations

Packages in main have their translations imported into Launchpad and exported from Launchpad into Ubuntu’s language-packs.

So any KDE package in main must generate translation templates, include or make available upstream translations and handle .desktop file translations.

To generate translation templates the package must include a Messages.sh file; complain to the upstream if it does not. You can check it works by running extract-messages.sh which should produce one or more .pot files in po/. This will be done automatically during build if you use the --with=kde option to dh.

Upstream will usually have also put the translation .po files into the po/ directory. If they do not, check if they are in separate upstream language packs such as the KDE SC language packs. If they are in separate language packs Launchpad will need to associate these together manually, contact David Planella to do this.

If a package is moved from universe to main it will need to be re-uploaded before the translations get imported into Launchpad.

.desktop files also need translations. We patch KDELibs to read translations out of .po files which are pointed to by a line X-Ubuntu-Gettext-Domain= added to .desktop files at package build time. A .pot file for each package is be generated at build time and .po files need to be downloaded from upstream and included in the package or in our language packs. The list of .po files to be downloaded from KDE’s repositories is in /usr/lib/kubuntu-desktop-i18n/desktop-template-list.

5.4. Library Symbols

Library symbols are tracked in .symbols files to ensure none go missing for new releases. KDE uses C++ libraries which act a little differently compared to C libraries. Debian’s Qt/KDE Team have scripts to handle this. See Working with symbols files for how to create and keep these files up to date.