For Users

Debian Fast Track is a repository that allows making “backports” of packages available to users of the stable distribution, if those packages cannot be maintained in testing and backported in the usual way.

Checkout for using packages from Debian FastTrack repository. Some of the software currently available via FastTrack include Gitlab, Virtual Box. Matrix Synapse was in buster-fasttrack briefly (now it is available in backports).

Presentation at DebConf 22 in Kosovo:

Server space is provided by Infomaniak (thanks to Zigo).

Archived version of the website at can be used as a fallback option if the main site is not accessible.

FastTrack Mirror at can be used as a fallback option if the main repository is not accessible.

For maintainers

See for frequently asked questions about Fast Track.

Deciding which suite to target

We can upload a package to backports only if it is in testing already. Also first time upload to backports usually takes at least a week to clear backports-NEW. If we don't want to wait for a package to reach testing or clear backports-NEW, we upload to backports-staging. If a package is useful for others and not just for gitlab, we try to upload to backports. gitlab, gitaly, ruby or ruby C extensions or packages depending on C extensions, we upload to fasttrack.

May be we can simplify this for bookworm, see for the proposal.

Sample changelog entries


gitlab (13.12.8+ds1-1~fto11+1) bullseye-fasttrack; urgency=medium

  * Rebuild for bullseye-fasttrack.

 -- Pirate Praveen <>  Thu, 08 Jul 2021 22:56:17 +0530

Since we started including newer ruby and ruby native libraries in fasttrack, we are now changing +fto suffix to ~fto.


gitlab (11.11.8+dfsg-1~fto10+1) buster-fasttrack; urgency=medium

  * Rebuild for buster-fasttrack.

 -- Pirate Praveen <>  Wed, 14 Aug 2019 17:39:22 +0530

What other packages can be in -fasttrack?

Ruby team does not want to support newer ruby versions in official -backports, so these are also uploaded in -fasttrack. ruby native packages that needs a rebuild against newer ruby versions, and any rubygem that depends on a native packages should be uploaded to -fasttrack (to avoid maintaining it in both -fasttrack and -backports). For example, ruby-rails and any gem that depends on a rails component is uploaded to -fasttrack.

Packages temporarily blocked from official backports

We have a suite for temporarily uploading packages that otherwise qualify backports criteria but we want in backports before it hits testing (transitions, freeze, backports-new or NEW blocking security update of a package in fasttrack).

Note: To avoid confusion with official backports, we are using -backports-staging suffix from bullseye.

ruby-marcel (1.0.1+dfsg-1~bpo11+1) bullseye-backports-staging; urgency=medium

  * Rebuild for bullseye-backports-staging.

 -- Pirate Praveen <>  Mon, 10 May 2021 15:26:41 +0530

rails (2: buster-backports; urgency=medium

  * Rebuild for fasttrack/buster-backports.

 -- Pirate Praveen <>  Sun, 31 May 2020 20:28:43 +0530

Once it qualifies for official backports, it should be uploaded to official backports. Once it is accepted into official backports, it should be removed from fast track repo. Follow BuildingFormalBackports instructions to build these packages.

Since many dependencies are only relevant for packages in -fasttrack, we relax this rule to upload packages that qualifies for official backports to be uploaded there to avoid extra maintenance work (as we have to upload anyway to -backports-staging to avoid backports-new delay). If a backported package is useful outside -fasttrack it is recommended to upload it to official -backports.

Building packages for fasttrack


  1. Create bullseye-fasttrack branch from the last release tag (Example: git checkout -b bullseye-fasttrack debian/1.1.2-1. Use git log for finding last uploaded tag).
  2. Add new changelog entry: run dch --bpo and modify version s/~bpo11/~fto11/ and s/bullseye-backports/bullseye-fasttrack/)
  3. Add tag gbp tag --debian-branch=bullseye-fasttrack
  4. Sample sbuild command for building packages targetting fasttrack (you will have to install fasttrack-archive-keyring package).

sbuild -A -s --force-orig-source -c bullseye-amd64-sbuild \
--extra-repository='deb bullseye-backports main' \
--extra-repository='deb bullseye-backports-staging main' \
--extra-repository='deb bullseye-fasttrack main' \
--extra-repository-key=/etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/fasttrack-archive-keyring.gpg \
--build-dep-resolver=aspcud -d bullseye-fasttrack --no-run-lintian "$@"


  1. Create buster-fasttrack branch from the last release tag (Example: git checkout -b buster-fasttrack debian/1.1.2-1. Use git log for finding last uploaded tag).
  2. Add new changelog entry: run dch --bpo and modify version s/~bpo/~fto/ and s/backports/fasttrack/)
  3. Optional: Update minimum version of gem2deb to 1.3 (and mention it in changelog), if it is a arch:any ruby package.
  4. Optional: Lower debhelper-compat to 11 (and mention it in changelog), if it is an arch:any package
  5. Add tag gbp tag --debian-branch=buster-fasttrack
  6. Sample sbuild command for building packages targetting fasttrack (you will have to download fasttrack-archive-key.asc from

sbuild -A -s --force-orig-source -c buster-amd64-sbuild \
--extra-repository='deb buster-backports main' \
--extra-repository='deb buildd-buster-backports main' \
--extra-repository='deb buster-backports main' \
--extra-repository='deb buster-fasttrack main' \
--extra-repository-key=$HOME/fasttrack-archive-key.asc \
--build-dep-resolver=aspcud -d buster-fasttrack --no-run-lintian "$@"

You can also check this package with buster-fasttrack branch

Uploading to Fast Track

Add this to your ~/

fqdn                    =
incoming                = /pub/UploadQueue/
login                   = anonymous
allow_dcut              = 1
method                  = ftp
# Please, upload your package to the proper archive
allowed_distributions   = (?!UNRELEASED|.*-security)

$ dput fasttrack gitlab_11.11.8+dfsg-1~fto10+1_amd64.changes

Note: Source only uploads are not supported at this time. Help is welcome to setup a buildd instance.

You can see the ?UploadQueue at

Contact FastTrack Team

Contact fasttrack team via matrix/irc or opening salsa issues as mentioned at or write an email to team at

For FastTrack Admins

See FastTrack/Admins

CategorySystemAdministration | CategoryPackageManagement | CategorySoftware | CategoryPackaging