This is a part of the FESCo Elections Interviews series. Voting is open to all Fedora contributors. The voting period starts on Friday, 26 November and closes promptly at 23:59:59 UTC on Thursday, 9 December 2021.

Interview with Fabio Valentini

Questions

Why do you want to be a member of FESCo and how do you expect to help steer the direction of Fedora?

As a long-term community member, contributor in various areas of the Fedora Project, and long-term user of Fedora Workstation and Server, I think that I bring an important perspective to the discussions and decisions that FESCo regularly makes. I am excited by the recent success of Fedora Linux in general, and I want to make sure that this success is sustainable.

How do you currently contribute to Fedora? How does that contribution benefit the community?

I make regular contributions to the Fedora Project in different areas:

  • I am the main maintainer of the Pantheon desktop environment for Fedora, and regularly contribute to the respective elementary OS upstream projects to make sure they also work great on Fedora. I hope to eventually be able to provide a Pantheon Spin of Fedora, as well.
  • I am the most active package maintainer in the Rust stack. I usually push dozens of updates for Rust crates every week to Fedora, triage build failures and broken dependencies, and remove deprecated and unnecessary components. I also work with upstream projects to port crates to new versions of their dependencies, report and fix broken unit tests, or make the projects easier to maintain as RPM packages.
  • I develop and maintain the service that provides the backend data source for the “broken dependencies” (FTI / FTBFS) information on the Packager Dashboard.
  • I am the developer of fedora-update-feedback and the Rust bindings for the bodhi REST API.
  • During development of every upcoming Fedora release, I triage, report, and fix – if possible – all upgrade path issues, to help make sure upgrades from one Fedora release to the next continue to be as reliable as they have been.

Fedora ELN brings RHEL engineering more closely into Fedora. How do you feel we should balance RHEL engineering with the community with ELN building from Fedora?

Even though I had concerns about this in the beginning, I think this has been handled well so far. Most contributors to Fedora packages have not needed to know or care about ELN at all, unless they want to – and I think we should work
to keep it that way. For those who want to contribute to what the next version of RHEL will look like ELN should be an approachable way to do that, but for all others who do not care about that, it should not negatively affect their work.

What are your thoughts on Fedora ELN and what are your suggestions in improving it?

I think the decisions that go into which packages are included in ELN rebuilds are somewhat opaque. For example, some of the packages I maintain are included, but their automatic rebuilds always fail – probably because there is no person who is responsible for Rust libraries on the ELN / RHEL side. This does not directly affect me and my work, but it is annoying and creates notification spam, and situations like this should probably be improved – either by more
regularly monitoring the list of included packages, or by more closely paying attention to regular build failures.

What else should community members know about you or your positions?

A hot dog is a sandwich. No pineapple, and definitely not on Pizza.