changelog header information


changelog - Debian Perl Group changelog header information


This is a small guide detailing some common headers that are used in changelog files. These headers are used by PET ( ) in order to properly track the status of the package.

Contributions are welcomed. PET is constantly being updated, and new headers are still being added. A list of proposed headers is available at


UNRELEASED is not a real header. Until a package is ready for upload, the distribution is set to UNRELEASED so that everyone is able to quickly see that this new version of the package has not been uploaded yet. It is also allows potential sponsors to know that the package is not ready to be uploaded. Once the package is complete and ready for upload, the distribution should be set to unstable or whatever distribution the package is intended for.


Sometimes, upstream might release a new version of a package that does not need to be uploaded in Debian. One reason for this would be if the changes are very minor, or if the changes do not apply to Debian. IGNORE-VERSION can be used to make PET aware of this. IGNORE-VERSION takes a version as an argument.



This line, if included in a changelog entry, will tell PET that there is no need to upload the version 0.34-1 of the package.

The debian revision seems required for non-native packages, but there’s no known real-life example where something else than a new upstream released validates an IGNORE-VERSION tag, so it will be $UPSTREAM_VERSION-1 for nearly every case.


In some situations, a package might fail to build from source (FTBFS) due to being unable to satisfy all of its Build-Depends. The WAITS-FOR header can be used to tell PET that the package is ready, but is waiting on another package to be uploaded to the archives first. A version can also be passed to WAITS-FOR. If a version is given, the waited for package shall be of greater or equal version.



This line will tell PET that this package is ready, but it is waiting on footo be uploaded.

WAITS-FOR: foo 1.23-4

This line, like the previous example, will tell PET that this package is ready, but it is waiting on foo to be uploaded. However, this line will have PET wait until a version greater than or equal to 1.23-4 of foo is uploaded.


The following people have contributed to the maintainership of this file:

* Nathan Handler <>


Copyright (c) 2009 by the individual authors and contributors noted above. All rights reserved. This document is free software; you may redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself

Perl is distributed under your choice of the GNU General Public License or the Artistic License. On Debian GNU/Linux systems, the complete text of the GNU General Public License can be found in `/usr/share/common-licenses/GPL’ and the Artistic License in `/usr/share/common-licenses/Artistic’.