[Pkg-electronics-devel] bringing ngspice into main?

Carsten Schoenert c.schoenert at t-online.de
Sun Sep 24 09:46:55 UTC 2017

Hello pkg electronics members,

Am 13.08.2017 um 23:41 schrieb Carsten Schoenert:
> Damn, I've forgotten the link to the Cider license change communication ...
> Am 13.08.2017 um 18:38 schrieb Carsten Schoenert:
> ...
>> Last year was a short attempt of updating the Cider license to a DFSG
>> compatible version visible [4], but this has been stalled after a short
>> time, I can try to ping the author of the starting email about that.
> ...
>> [1] https://tracker.debian.org/pkg/kicad
>> [2] https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=834335
>> [3]
>> http://ftp.acc.umu.se/pub/debian-meetings/2017/debconf17/debian-electronics-bof.vp8.webm
> [4] https://lists.debian.org/debian-legal/2016/10/msg00022.html

given that the KiCad team is wanting to release a version 5 of KiCad
still this year [1] the topic about ngspice and the needed library
libngspice for KiCad 5 becomes a new POV.

As I've heart nothing from Gudjon in the between times that I shouldn't
work on ngspice to bring this package into main I started and worked on
the problems sometimes already.
Some days ago a new version 27 of ngspice was released, so it's a good
chance to not work on problems twice as we can do all the needed things
on that new version.

But I'd glad to get some help here! The problem isn't the packaging, the
main problem are the license issues on ngspice, or better on some parts
of ngspice.

I started a wiki page for tracking the issues and a hopefully resolving
of those.


I also have prepared a local repository with a import of
ngspice_26-1.1.dsc done with git-buildpackage and with some
modifications I've done in the near past. The most of them are packaging
things like moving the package to debhelper 10 and adding new packages
for libngspice.

I've pushed this to my GitHub site [2]. Note there is no pristine-tar
branch, if you want to rebuild please take the source of ngspice from
the source package site [3]. I haven't imported the new version right now.

KiCad is mainly needing the libngspice and the header files of course
for version 5. I'm currently helping me by a own modification of the
package ngspice as pushed to the BTS in #834335 [4] to get actual
nightly versions of KiCad built.

So what to archive?
I'd say we can and should get most of the ngspice stuff get into main,
that means much as possible of the existing packages. So far I sorted
things out the existing ngspice-doc package isn't DFSG compatible due
the SPICEDOC license. Some other parts of the source have a EULA or a
license that may not be DFSG.
So if some parts of spicelib oder ciderlib needs to be removed the
functionality of the ngspice maybe limited afterwards. I haven't a
overview right now. If someone with more experience on ngspice can do
some enlightenment here would be great.

Before asking debian-legal I'd be happy to know the points that are
clear DFSG or even not.

Any comments are welcome!

[1] https://lists.launchpad.net/kicad-developers/msg30858.html
[1] https://github.com/tijuca/ngspice-dfsg
[3] https://bugs.debian.org/834335

Carsten Schoenert

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