Contributing to Gentoo

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This article explains how users can contribute to the development of Gentoo. All users are welcome to contribute to Gentoo, even those who are new! There is always room for improvement, and any contributions can help make the Gentoo experience even better.

There are many different ways to help out, so there should be something for everyone. Some areas for contribution have a low bar for entry, so anyone should be able to contribute on some level!

Anyone interested in becoming a Gentoo developer can start by contributing to any of the areas listed below. It's good to have a track record of contributions to build a profile, and recruiters will be able to see past contributions.

Tip
Gentoo accepts donations! Give a lump sum, or set up a monthly contribution, with PayPal. This helps keep the lights on for the core services powering Gentoo.
See also
See also the contribute to Gentoo page on the main website.

Support the community

Help users in the various support mediums:

Document useful information

The Gentoo Wiki is the main documentation repository for Gentoo. All users are encouraged to add content and edit articles, even if just to provide a correction or add a quick tip.

Documentation is an area that is both very useful to the community, and is particularly easy to start out with, making it an excellent place to start contributing.

Please check out the contributor's guide on how to start helping out! In addition, there is extensive documentation on how to edit the wiki.

Help translating documentation is much appreciated, for readers in languages other than English.

Also check out the page about the Gentoo wiki, the Gentoo wiki project page, and the Gentoo wiki FAQ.

Report and resolve bugs

Gentoo Bugzilla is used to track bugs for Gentoo and its packages. Anyone is encouraged to report, confirm and resolve bugs:

Create and maintain packages

The Gentoo ebuild repository is the heart of Gentoo; it is important to keep it alive and kicking, that's why contributions to it are very valuable.

Occasional commits to either the Gentoo tree or an overlay are possible, or become a Gentoo Developer! Writing ebuilds is what makes building and installing packages possible on a Gentoo system.

After the first steps, learn more with the Development Guide.

The following resources can be helpful when adding a new package to the Gentoo ebuild repository, updating an existing one, or finding new packages to contribute to:

Anyone who can write ebuilds (or is willing to learn), and wants to help out can join the GURU project, to collaboratively maintain packages with the help of a few seasoned developers.

Test Gentoo and the packages

Gentoo is a very stable distribution, but to get there everything needs to be thoroughly tested, even after things have already been shown to be working. To help out making sure everything is always working perfectly for end users, configure and use the testing branch and report issues to the developers!

Become a developer

Become a Gentoo Developer to contribute to the project at the most fundamental level. Developers create Gentoo by contributing code, documentation, infrastructure, and such. Developers start by helping out, participating in community, and once they find a mentor, take the developer quizzes and get recruited.

See the Becoming a Gentoo Developer article for details on how people get on board with the project!

Developers should join one or more of the many projects, depending on areas of contribution.

See also

  • Bugday — a day devoted to development efforts pertaining to a certain area of the Gentoo project, organized at most one a month.
  • Gentoo Wiki:Contributor's guide — help anyone quickly get started with simple edits
  • Gentoo Wiki:Guidelines — provide writing-conventions and layout-schemes that aim for a consistent and professional presentation across all of the wiki's diverse articles
  • Package testing — provides information for ebuild developers on testing ebuilds.
  • Project:GURU — an official repository of new Gentoo packages that are maintained collaboratively by Gentoo users

External resources