This is a part of the FESCo Elections Interviews series. Voting is open to all Fedora contributors. The voting period starts on Friday, 21 May and closes promptly at 23:59:59 UTC on Thursday, 3 June 2021.

Interview with František Zatloukal

  • Fedora Account: frantisekz
  • IRC: frantisekz (found in #fedora-qa #fedora-admin #fedora-apps #fedora-aaa #fedora-apps #silverblue)
  • Fedora User Wiki Page


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

Great technical governance by FESCo is what makes me a happy Fedora user and contributor, even in my free time. I believe I can give something back to the community by participating on all the fundamental decisions that steer the direction of Fedora. I would make sure every proposed change gets the attention and discussion it deserves and I’d be able to provide feedback from a Quality Engineer perspective.

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

I am currently employed by Red Hat as a member of Fedora QE, so, primarily, I am making sure Fedora doesn’t eat your data or put your computer on fire.

Apart from that, I am maintaining a bunch of packages in Fedora (ranging from core packages like mozjs through the celery stack to smaller packages that I personally make use of), and most recently working on Fedora Packager Dashboard, a tool to help all the packagers keep track of issues, changes, updates,… and much more to come about their packages and make their lives and contributing experience more pleasant.

Oraculum, the backend of the Dashboard has an open API which can be used by other tools: fedora-easy-karma is using it to fetch data from bodhi instantly, pagure dist-git is using it as a data source for the versions table and I am planning to resurrect the pkgwat utility by leveraging oraculum as the data source.

I’d also like to mention the maintenance of testdays web application, which I gave a bit of modernisation and a new look last fall to ease up navigating through current, scheduled and past testdays/testweeks.

Throughout the last year, I’ve also driven an accepted Fedora Change to include dxvk by default when you install wine, which I believe led to a far superior gaming experience on Fedora, which might’ve been even more valuable given more time people around the world spent at home.

How should we handle cases where Fedora’s and Red Hat Enterprise Linux’s needs conflict in an incompatible way?

I believe there always is a way to solve the potentially differing needs without harming Fedora or RHEL. Yes, it might be a compromise, sometimes, it might need a lot of time invested from those proposing the change, FESCo and most importantly, our community, to provide feedback and analysis of potential impacts and solutions to smooth out rough edges.

Let’s take ELN, there were different needs on how the packages should be built in Fedora or in RHEL, respectively. With all the complications that the goal presented, the solution didn’t harm Fedora and gave RHEL developers what they needed with a bunch of possible ways to improve the solution in the future.

There are many more examples of potential conflict in the distribution’s needs that were, in the end, solved without harming Fedora or RHEL.

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

I’d love to see more automation around packaging processes – from a review, through making changes via a PR being more automatically tested (which is slowly happening, yay!)

Anyway, I think I’ve mentioned everything important or interesting about me in the lines above, those who made it to the end, thanks for reading the interview!