How to get your game into Debian

(Disclaimer: this article is work in progress. It will improve as the author tries to build a new package from scratch and works out what he needs.)


You've probaby arrived here because you'd like to see a particular game added to Debian, but you've never built a package before (or you have, but it's never been uploaded). There is a lot of documentation on the web about Debian packaging, but a lot of it is aimed at people who already know a lot about it. This page attempts to provide you with a starting point and link you to the rest of what you need.

Creating your package(s)

If you have no idea how to build a package, one place to start is this helpful tutorial. Although it's not aimed at those completely new, it does refer to almost all the other docs you will need to read. It recommends using the "dh" utility to help create your package ("only solution with an increasing mind share").

You will certainly need to read the Debian Policy Manual.

The first step is to rename your package's upstream source tarball to fit the Debian nomenclature: name_version.orig.tar.gz.

The next step is to untar it and type "cd <sourcedir> && dh_make", where <sourcedir> is the directory it was untar'd into.

(to be continued ...)

Getting your packages uploaded

You cannot upload packages to the Debian archive yourself, until you become a DebianMaintainer. So you will first need a "sponsor", who must be a DebianDeveloper (because only DDs can upload other people's packages). There is no easy way to find a sponsor - there are too many packages and not enough DDs to deal with them all.

The Debian Games Team contains a number of DDs who may be willing to sponsor games packages. Making sure your package conforms with Games/Policy and "getting involved" (see Games/Development) are good ways to increase your chances here.

DDs outside the Games Team may also sponsor games packages, especially if they are keen players of the game.