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Bugs Delay Release of Debian Lenny

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the better-late-than-buggy dept.

Debian 227

A. B. VerHausen writes to tell us that over 200 release-critical bugs continue to push back Debian Lenny's release date. Originally slated for a September release, there is still a long road to be traveled before Lenny sees the light of day. Project leader Steve McIntyre says they may consider dropping some packages for the release if they continue to cause problems, and while an end of October release is the goal, only time will tell.

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What else is new? (4, Insightful)

martinw89 (1229324) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358661)

Shocking!!!

Seriously, this doesn't seem unusual. I'm happy that the team is waiting until all the bugs are squashed.

Re:What else is new? (3, Funny)

andrikos (1114853) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359197)

Oh come on! Everybody knows that they should have released long ago and that we should be waiting for SP1 before we actually install it!

Re:What else is new? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359389)

Kill yourself.

Re:What else is new? (4, Funny)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359519)

Kill yourself.

bash: kill: yourself: arguments must be process or job IDs

Re:What else is new? (1)

andrikos (1114853) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359955)

kill Kenny

Oh my God!!

Re:What else is new? (2, Funny)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359707)

Hasta la vista.

Re:What else is new? (1)

sgt scrub (869860) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359833)

And then cleaning up the security breaches until SP2 is released.

Re:What else is new? (3, Interesting)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359385)

Queue Orson Welles' deep voice stating "We will ship no Linux before it's time". Seriously, I always thought this was one of the major advantages contributing to Linux quality: not having to meet arbitrary release deadlines imposed by marketing and sales. Unlike one of Debian's Operating System competitors that will go unmentioned except to say that they're based in Redmond where the Vista is always cloudy. This isn't news because it is exactly what I would expect Open Source developers to do.

I just have one stupid question: when will Debian run out of Toy Story Characters [wikipedia.org] to name releases after? (Methinks the Hand-in-the-box [wikipedia.org] release will not be well received...)

Re:What else is new? (1)

ShieldW0lf (601553) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359495)

I knew a kid named Lenny when I was young. When he grew up, he changed his name. Don't think anyone ever had to ask him why.

Who picks these names? Crispin Glover?

Re:What else is new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359649)

I for one would rather have "Lenny" than *any* of Ubuntu's childish names.

Re:What else is new? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359735)

Ubuntu's childish names.

You ain't seen nothing yet: 2016.4 will be Pulsating Penis!

Just wait till Debian names the next release after Wheezy, the asthmatic penguin.

Re:What else is new? (0, Troll)

darkpixel2k (623900) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359943)

I for one would rather have "Lenny" than *any* of Ubuntu's childish names.

Agreed.

The major pain though is that retard users keep referring to it by 'codename' after it's been released.

The current version in development is 'Intrepid Ibex'. Yeah--the name blows, but when it's released, it'll become 8.10. Of course you'd never know if because idiots will still refer to it as 'intrepid'.

Now--think fast, and put these in the order of release and tell me the version number: "intrepid, hoard, gutsy, warty, vista"

That's right--it's a pain in the ass to remember the mapping of names to version numbers. (And yes, 'vista' is in there to throw you off track.

It's a lot easier to remember the order and release dates of: "6.06, 6.10, 7.10, 8.04, etc..."

If it came down to a vote, I'm willing to bet most people would like to get rid of the dumb animal names.

Re:What else is new? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359531)

Well, a few years ago the running joke was whether Debian would run out of Toy Story characters before the heat death of the universe. They've shortened the release cycle since then, which doesn't seem to be working for them.

Re:What else is new? (2, Informative)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359679)

The shortened release cycle seems to be working pretty well. Afaict thier current strategy is to aim for 18 months and be happy with 24. They achieved that with etch and it seems likely they will achieve it with lenny.

Re:What else is new? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359769)

Can it be any worse than FreeBSD's ability to 'release on time'?

It's almost a month after 7.1 was supposed to be released, and they are still on the first beta.

Anyway
Quality > Prompt Release Date

Good! (5, Insightful)

bjourne (1034822) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358681)

This is good news. There are many distributions that just take the latest and greatest of every package without doing proper quality control (Ubuntu, Gentoo, Fedora, etc). The price they pay is regressions and stuff that doesn't work. There needs to be distros like Debian which, while always delayed, has all the important bugs ironed out.

Re:Good! (5, Insightful)

Meshach (578918) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358813)

Obviously you have never worked in software QA. There are always bugs that make it into released project. The art of good project management is deciding which bugs can be allowed into the final project (ie which will actually impact users).

Also I am pretty sure that Ubuntu is based on Debian.

Re:Good! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25358923)

Obviously you suck at reading comprehension.

There needs to be distros like Debian which, while always delayed, has all the important bugs ironed out.

Re:Good! (5, Informative)

WK2 (1072560) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359087)

There needs to be distros like Debian which, while always delayed, has all the important bugs ironed out.

Debian is like Debian. Seriously, how many Debian distros do we really need? 1 is fine with me.

Also I am pretty sure that Ubuntu is based on Debian.

Ubuntu is based on Debian Unstable. Their release processes are entirely different. Ubuntu includes buggy packages that Debian would reject in a stable release.

Re:Good! (2, Interesting)

Firehed (942385) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359255)

I thought Linux was supposed to be to OS X as OS X is to Windows in terms of stability (ie, not just rock-solid, but it will punch you in the gut if you try to crash it)... is this not the case?

Re:Good! (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359379)

Which Linux?

Re:Good! (1)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359695)

Depends on the version of Linux and what software you use with it. There are a mind-boggling number of different versions of the kernel out there, in various distributions, and sometimes in custom-made operating systems...and then we aren't even getting to the applications, yet. Among all those, I am sure you will find everything from rock-solid to "crashes at the drop of a hat, or even without that".

Re:Good! (2, Informative)

zero-point-infinity (918349) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359363)

Sure, based on Debian Sid - a little ways back on the scale of stability vs current versions. So while, yes, Ubuntu is based on Debian, its choice of where to branch off cuts out some of Debian's QA process. How you feel about the advantages and disadvantages of that choice is of course a matter of taste.

Re:Good! (2, Insightful)

Hognoxious (631665) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359737)

How you feel about the advantages and disadvantages of that choice is of course a matter of taste.

It's nice to be able to make that choice.

Re:Good! (0, Flamebait)

darkpixel2k (623900) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359983)

Also I am pretty sure that Ubuntu is based on Debian.

Yes, in much the same way that elephants and helicopters are both made out of molecules.

Re:Good! (1)

sydneyfong (410107) | more than 5 years ago | (#25360125)

Obviously you don't know Debian.

Debian does have bugs when released. As another poster have mentioned, you missed the "important" qualifier word. Many software are released with bugs that practically make it unusable for its stated purpose, but this is rather rare* in Debian.

* Note: "rare" does not mean "non-existent". I have encountered non-trivial showstoppers but with much less frequency than other distributions.

Ubuntu is not "like" Debian with respect to its bug tolerance. It has a fixed release schedule of twice a year, and while generally stable, is not as anal as Debian on its insistence of squashing out every "important" bug before release. The technology is more or less the same, the philosophy is rather different.

Release When Ready (5, Informative)

mpapet (761907) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358885)

For production quality operating systems there is *nothing* better than release when ready. Given the sheer number of packages and diversity of platforms, all the Debian volunteers do a great job.

It remains the corner-case user who needs the latest and greatest release of any given package.

As an fyi, I've been running Lenny for at least 6 months as a clean-install desktop with no issues. Upgrading from stable to Lenny had issues for me. I've got two servers running Lenny without show-stopper bugs right now.

Lenny's got a really nice KDE4 in an unofficial repo at deb http://kde4.debian.net/ [debian.net] . I encourage users to check it out. Don't enter bugs against these packages in Debian though.

Re:Release When Ready (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359725)

I've been using Ubuntu for a while, the Sarge release was just poor timing relative to some newer versions of packages (in my case).

Assuming Lenny has what I need, would you say putting Lenny on now would be OK? I'm using Ubuntu 8.04.1 now.

I'm not afraid of hackery or bug reporting, so as long as it won't explode on me, I should be fine.

Re:Release When Ready (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359765)

Oops, I meant etch, not sarge.

Re:Good! (3, Insightful)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358939)

Exactly. And if you're too impatient to wait for them to get all the bugs out, that's what Sid is for. I've been using debian unstable since it was lenny, and it's always been very good. It's very rare that there's actually a bug in a package I use, so it's plenty stable for my purposes.

Re:Good! (2, Informative)

JshWright (931399) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359141)

Lenny was never Unstable. Unstable is always Sid.

Re:Good! (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359439)

Really? I thought they changed that each release. I dunno, I just use "unstable" in my sources.list.

In any case, I've been using unstable since 3.1 was current. It's never done me wrong.

Re:Good! (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359831)

"testing" changes each release

currently, stable points at etch and testing points at lenny

unstable always points at sid

oldstable, btw, currently points at sarge

Re:Good! (1)

Constantine XVI (880691) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359867)

You're thinking of "testing".

Stable == current release (etch)
Testing == next release (lenny)
Unstable == bleeding edge (sid)

Re:Good! (1)

ari_j (90255) | more than 5 years ago | (#25360013)

It is much more correct to say it the way you just did - "using unstable since 3.1 was current." The reason is that there is never an instant in time when the current snapshot of unstable will become a release. Individual packages (or versions of them) migrate from unstable into testing, and at some point testing is frozen for release and then becomes stable so that it can be unfrozen for new packages to come in from unstable. That's why unstable is always sid - it's constantly changing and never frozen. By contract, stable is a snapshot at a moment in time modulo security fixes or the occasional point-release update and testing works toward a freeze.

Re:Good! (0)

SmackedFly (957005) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359039)

Gentoo actually has some of the harshest requirements for packages entering stable I've seen, just after debian. Sure, you can override them, but that goes for the Debian unstable branch too, which a lot of people are running anyway, so where's the difference.

Re:Good! (1)

gparent (1242548) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359047)

If you think Ubuntu has the latest and greatest packages, maybe you should try it once. Most of the packages are outdated and I don't rely on the package manager if I want the latest version anymore.

Re:Good! (5, Informative)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359201)

If you think Ubuntu has the latest and greatest packages, maybe you should try it once. Most of the packages are outdated and I don't rely on the package manager if I want the latest version anymore.

To be fair, Debian does do quite a bit more testing than Ubuntu. OTOH, Ubuntu does a lot more spit-and-polish integration than Debian and is unafraid to take controversial stances on things like binary drivers or distributing Firefox with Firefox branding (as opposed to Ice Weasel or whatever) or distributing some codecs that may be violating patents or using code from other distros (like system-config-printer).

Debian is more about stability and reliability, while Ubuntu is more about the end-user experience.

When you make a Linux distro, you have to make a few tradeoffs. The differences between Ubuntu and Debian are mostly about differences in decision-making regarding these tradeoffs.

Re:Good! (2, Informative)

Sancho (17056) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359221)

Ubuntu tends to have the latest and greatest packages up front. For example, 8.04 was released with a Firefox 3.0 release candidate. The trick is that they don't upgrade packages arbitrarily--they'll upgrade or backport for security fixes, but not for the newest version. You'll have to wait for the next major release if you want that.

It's a nice compromise between bleeding-edge and stability. I'm sure that the process is only made more difficult by upstream developers mixing bugfixes with new features.

Re:Good! (4, Interesting)

andrikos (1114853) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359353)

In Ubuntu, the trick I do is to use binary packages of the latest stable version and source packages from the upcoming (yet unreleased) version.
When something is missing you can download the source package of the new version, make the compile, generate a binary package and install it in an automated way.
An extra plus: during the process you can also patch the source.

Re:Good! (2, Informative)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359759)

An extra-extra-plus-good bonus:

If a new binary package comes along since your last build, the package manager will notice and suggest you update. You don't need to worry quite so much about your build getting stale.

Re:Good! (1)

andrikos (1114853) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359805)

If we could also get updates on the source packages, that would be even greater!

Re:Good! (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359931)

I think you can. apt-build is the package that handles that. It sets up a local repository that your builds go into.

Re:Good! (1)

ari_j (90255) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359929)

Debian used to release when they felt like the system was in a good enough state to release, with no set schedule. This is exactly why that's a good idea - now, they have to choose between being buggy or being behind schedule, whereas before they did not have to make that trade-off.

Who still uses Debian? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25358707)

I still use Debian Sarge on my current server. I consider Ubuntu to be more mainstream though.

Re:Who still uses Debian? (1)

stevey (64018) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358731)

If you use Debian Sarge then you use Debian!

Although you've been missing security updates so you should upgrade it, or replace it.

Re:Who still uses Debian? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25358821)

I still use debian on this old laptop that won't support fast new flashy distros like ubuntu (memory too low), which I use on newer computers when I can.

Re:Who still uses Debian? (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359241)

I still use debian on this old laptop that won't support fast new flashy distros like ubuntu (memory too low), which I use on newer computers when I can.

I run Xubuntu on an old AMD K6-2 Compaq Presario with 192 MB of RAM. Works great. I've even got support for my D-Link USB wireless adapter installed.

Re:Who still uses Debian? (2, Insightful)

clang_jangle (975789) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359077)

Who? Only a few thousand sysadmins, researchers, and other conscientious geeks. There's so much more going on in the real world than you'll hear about in the media...

Don't use Sarge (5, Informative)

swillden (191260) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359399)

I still use Debian Sarge on my current server.

Bad idea. Support for Sarge ended in April, so you haven't been getting any security updates since then, and there are some known weaknesses.

You should upgrade to Etch, ASAP.

Re:Who still uses Debian? (1)

dedazo (737510) | more than 5 years ago | (#25360169)

I recently switched [slashdot.org] from CentOS to Etch.

For me personally it's a pain in the butt to get Debian up to date with the things I need on there, which is trivial in CentOS. We're talking about latest versions of things like Python (Etch still ships with 2.4.x) and so on. Not impossible, just time consuming.

Slicehost offers Ubuntu as a server image option. Call me crazy but for some reason I just don't trust a desktop-oriented distro to run a dedicated server. Not to mention all the stuff included in the default install that I have no need for whatsoever. So short of Slackware, I went with Debian.

So far so good.

Bugs In Debian? (-1, Troll)

rshol (746340) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358713)

I'm shocked I tell you, shocked.

Merge Debian with Ubuntu (0)

ilovesymbian (1341639) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358753)

Why don't Debian and Ubuntu just merge? It would make a whole lot of things easier.

Offtrack, isn't Debian == Deb + Ian anyway?

Re:Merge Debian with Ubuntu (1)

martinw89 (1229324) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358855)

I don't know, becuase Debian and Ubuntu both have different purposes and combining the two would cause community strife and lowered productivity overall?

Nahh, that's not it. Nevermind.

Re:Merge Debian with Ubuntu (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359617)

They merge on a regular basis (~ every 6 months), usually from Debian to Ubuntu.

No! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25358767)

Not Lenny!

Re:No! (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359249)

Not Lenny!

Denny!

Re:No! (1)

andrikos (1114853) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359413)

Kernel panic message:

Oh my God! They killed Lenny!

Meanwhile, In 'Unstable'... (1)

ewhac (5844) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358791)

Meanwhile, in the 'unstable' tree, the changelogs aren't getting updated.

In 'aptitude', I pick through the packages with updates available and look at the changelogs to see what got changed to see if it's one I want to take. About a week ago, a bunch of updated packages showed up, but the corresponding changelogs seem to have gone AWOL (examples: there is no changelog for smbclient 2:3.2.3-3, or iceweasel 3.0.3-2).

I've seen this sort of thing before, but never understood why it was happening. Can anyone shed any light?

Schwab

Re:Meanwhile, In 'Unstable'... (1)

Slashdot Parent (995749) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358877)

Which changelogs are you referring to? These [debian.org] ? Or the changelogs within the package?

Re:Meanwhile, In 'Unstable'... (3, Informative)

MasterOfMagic (151058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359053)

If this is happening, first check the changelog for the affected package in /usr/share/doc. If it is out of date or missing, you need to file a severity minor [debian.org] (with the following rationale [debian.org] ) against the packages missing the updated changelog. This is not a violation of Debian policy (which would warrant a severity of serious), but it's suggested by policy and trivial to add.

Re:Meanwhile, In 'Unstable'... (2, Informative)

WK2 (1072560) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359231)

The above user does not want to install the packages unless they have a change he would interested in. Changelogs are only available in /usr/share/doc AFTER the package is installed. Although, I suppose he could manually download the .deb, unarchive it using ar, tar, and gz, and then see if it would have a changelog in /usr/share/doc that way.

I have noticed something similar as the above poster; it might have the same cause. I will sometimes browse packages.debian.org/sid/package-name, and then click on changelog, and get a 404. I don't know why it happens.

Re:Meanwhile, In 'Unstable'... (1)

MasterOfMagic (151058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359427)

The changelog presented in aptitude should be up to date as well. It's pulled from the package. He can likely file the same bug as before mentioning the fact that the changelog isn't showing up in aptitude (which could be an aptitude bug, after all), but having never done that, I'm not sure what the response would be.

Weird about the problem on p.d.o before. I've had problems recently with apt-listbugs not being able to connect to the bug tracking system to check the bugs before an install or upgrade on unstable.

Re:Meanwhile, In 'Unstable'... (1)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359951)

The changelog presented in aptitude should be up to date as well. It's pulled from the package.
That seems unlikely to me since it would require the package manager to download the whole package to show the changelog.

Re:Meanwhile, In 'Unstable'... (1)

Lennie (16154) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359709)

It's not just in Debian, I've seen the same in Ubuntu.

No "haha" tag? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25358843)

If this article was about Microsoft instead of Debian, you know the tone would be substantially different.

Re:No "haha" tag? (2, Insightful)

martinw89 (1229324) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358955)

Actually, I think we would be glad if Microsoft was holding back a release because of critical bugs. Sure, there would be the occasional jackhole who said Microsoft sucks because they can't keep a release date. But, if they were being as open as Debian and admitting to fixing critical bugs (and presenting them for us to see), I'm sure there would be some insightful comments about the increased quality being worth the wait.

Re:No "haha" tag? (1)

Firehed (942385) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359361)

Some insightful comments, sure. But most would be giving them shit and making remarks about it being the next Vista and whatnot. But to paraphrase someone's sig, Slashdot has scattered insight in a sea of mediocrity - so that's really to be expected ;)

Re:No "haha" tag? (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359985)

Microsoft has earned the reputation they have here. Had Debian repeatedly fucked up and said "we meant to do that" or "there is no problem", we WOULD treat them the same way.

Re:No "haha" tag? (4, Interesting)

Sancho (17056) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359387)

Possibly, but I truly don't think Microsoft could ever do right around here. Short of releasing the OS under either the BSD license or the GPL, they will forever have a reputation as software bloaters, monopolists, and DRM-supporters. And such a reputation is not undeserved.

The truth is, I'm not sure they could ever make a stable release of Windows. Vista was horribly delayed, horribly buggy on release, and had dropped a fair number of planned features in order to prevent further delays. If they'd planned to quash most of the bugs before release, I wonder how long it would have taken to get it all done?

Debian has the benefit of a good reputation and of having free software. People aren't scared to run pre-release versions of Debian in production, and it's relatively simple to fix many bugs yourself while waiting for something official from Debian. This means that Debian gets more testers doing real work with their release candidates.

Compare this to Microsoft, who also publish beta and release candidates for free (though free-as-in-beer.) How many people ran Vista full-time before it was released? Heck, Microsoft can barely get people to run it full-time now that it's been out for a while!

Re:No "haha" tag? (1)

Lennie (16154) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359803)

Maybe they should create something people actually want to use, instead of have to use because of application compatibility and then people also would most likely rather use the older version because of the same reason (XP)

Re:No "haha" tag? (1)

evanbd (210358) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359169)

If we thought the delay would actually allow MS to release a product free of serious bugs, we'd be glad. If, however, they miss release dates and then release with major known issues still present, then we laugh.

Re:No "haha" tag? (1)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359447)

``If this article was about Microsoft instead of Debian, you know the tone would be substantially different.''

Yes. And that's a bit hypocritic. On the other hand, there is an important difference between Microsoft and Debian: while both produce operating systems, Microsoft mostly deals with only things they develop themselves, and doesn't package all applications for a given release of their operating systems. Debian, on the other hand, deals mostly with software they don't develop, and still manage to package an impressive chunk of that for seamless integration with their operating system. I also think their final release dates and feature sets don't tend to differ as much from the initial announcements as do Microsoft's...

Re:No "haha" tag? (1)

Shade of Pyrrhus (992978) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359561)

But then you have the difference that you're PAYING for Windows, while Debian is an open source project that you get can for free. The thing here is "Hey look, these people are waiting to give us something for free until they've ironed out the bugs". You can go grab Sid if you want - can you get Windows 7 for free already, with free updates?

Comparing apples to oranges doesn't always work.

Re:No "haha" tag? (1)

mweather (1089505) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359829)

When have you EVER seen an article about Microsoft delaying a product release because of bugs?

Release ti, and call it Ubuntu (2, Funny)

russlar (1122455) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358845)

1. Release is as is 2. Call it Ubuntu 3. ????? 4. ENDLESS PROFIT!!!

Re:Release ti, and call it Ubuntu (3, Funny)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359273)

Be careful. I hear Mark Shuttleworth has a patent on that.

Re:Release ti, and call it Ubuntu (1)

mweather (1089505) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359863)

These packages are older than the ones in Ubuntu. Ubuntu comes from Debian Unstable. Lenny is Debian Testing, soon to be Debian Stable.

The truth about the milanesa (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25358901)

Althouth I really like Linux and the free software, I think that we have to accept the crushing truth.

In these times it really doesn't matter if is launched KDE 35.0 or Gnome Vista, because while both environments (and others with less weight like IceWM) were worrying in confuse the user with a completely different aspect, Microsoft was consolidating his position as the leader in the field of the operating systems, first with the operating system Windows XP (that have approximately 90% of the market on the client side) and with its advanced successor, the recently Windows Vista, that offers a new form to interact with our PCs. Is faster, friendlier, and secure.

The reality is that Linux has little to offer to the inexperienced user. The same novice that is seen disconcerted by the impossibility to do a simple copy-paste between QT and GTK applications. If you don't believe me, go out and ask to the people how they install a program that does NOT have packages for their distribution (because each one has its own packege system, completely incompatible with the others, and requires the use of complicated commands). Even RPM packages can't be installed equally in Mandriva and SuSE.

Then what we suggest to this user (that is just beginning in the Unix Word) is that he need to download the source code, open the console, decompress it and compile it. How many people get to do it? One of each a million, I have to say. We persist in THAT is the normal thing... nothing more far from reality.

Explain him why in his Ubuntu, Kubuntu or Fedora, he cannot see many web pages: he must download the Flash and the Java plugin, in order to install them with complicated commands. Also make him know that he won't be able to listen his MP3, WMA and WMV files. Tell to the flaming buyer of a new AMD64 how he can play flash games. A shit.

And the gamers? Obviously they'll return to windows, because even God can't use the hardware acceleration of the most modern graphics cards (besides, the drivers don't come included with the distributions... becuase of "freedom"). How many games can be run on Linux?... just a few ones. By each Linux videogame we have 500 that run on Windows. And the few ones that run on Linux...Oh! Surprise!...Just Windows binaries on the CD, and you have to download the Linux version from a website. Finally the user returns to the best option, the most used OS in homes (we know what OS is).

The proof of the free software failure is seen also in the professional world, either in areas like electronic design (doesn't exist anything similar to Protel), architecture (the standard CAD -all we know wich one-only works on Windows), web design (something similar to Dreamweaver? Don't mention me something like NVU, that not only is full of bugs, but just have the 5% of the Dreamweaver features. Neither Bluefish, Quanta or similars... no one would face a complex project with such a primitive tools). DTP? Scribus is a good try (very immature) but Quark or InDesign are far batter. Flash content creation (a standard, and a flash player installed in the 99% of PCs)? It cannot be done on Linux.

In the software development industry there's not a single decent RAD tool. Gambas seems to promise, but for now is shit; Eclipse is a RAM eater (thanks Java) that can only be used with 2GB RAM; Kylix promised to give us the potential of Delphi to Linux, but it was discontinued because the developers hate to pay for licenses and they prefer to use a primitive tool, like KDevelop. And now that we talk about Borland tools, is not rare that programming gurus like Ian Marteens abandoned Delphi and C++ Builder and now prefer the most powerful system for software development: Microsoft Visual Studio.NET.

A computer game developer would not develop free (as in free spech) games, because they have to eat and there's not a business model compatible with free software. The Linux users don't want free (as in free spech) games, they just want commercial quality without pay a single buck.

Accounting software? On Linux? There's not software in this area. The businessman wants to have something standard, something friendly, something mature. He doesn't want to be fighting with a console, compiling sources, and in the end (if he finally get it compile) get a half-finished application.

If Linux is free (in both senses)...Why the high computers-makers don't preinstall it (just a 1% make that)? Or at least dual-boot? Others, in other hand, opt for FreeDOS.

The PC Battle is loss... because it never exist. Linux with it's chaotic development (instead of boost existing applications or create new ones to supply the lacks, we have thousand clones of each one (unfinished, by the way) or that directly just make us laugh) just has dug it's own tomb. The user don't want a degree in Computer Science: He wants to insert the game CD, make a few clicks and have all installed and running. He doesn't want headaches. He wants visit XXX sites and watch the video correctly. He wants to install his webcam without recompiling the kernel.

Keep defending the console. Keep defending LaTeX as if it was something that a secretary or a lawyer have to use with the same simplicity of Microsoft Office. You keep defending Vi as the best tool for software developmnet or for web site design. You keep believing that new users need to get close to Debian or Gentoo, taking days to configure a USB modem. You keep hating distributions like Ubuntu or SuSE because are trying to be friendly. You keep just like this and in the end there will be just three frikis using Linux, while the rest of the world will be using a OS that is already mature and functional: Windows.

And You? Where do you want to go today?

Thanks for you attention.

Re:The truth about the milanesa (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 5 years ago | (#25358969)

This is an obvious copy & paste troll.

Good luck with that.

Re:The truth about the milanesa (1)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359163)

Oh, my. Then I guess I have to return my salary and discard my stock in 3 different major Linux-based industries from the last 10 years? That's too bad, I was keeping that to retire with.

Re:The truth about the milanesa (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359375)

Hello? El Lobo? [slashdot.org] Is that you and your Linuzzz-hating ass?

Lenny (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359021)

Lenny.. Officially, the Church will not take a
position on the religious implications of
these ... phenomena. However, since they
started, people have been lining up at every
church in the city to confess and take
communion. We've had to put on extra
priests. Personally, I think it's a sign
from God but don't quote me on that.

Re:Lenny (1)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359637)

This reminds me of a Ghostbusters quote:

Fire and brimstone coming down from the skies! Rivers and seas boiling!
Forty years of darkness, earthquakes, and volcanos!
The dead rising from the grave!
Human sacrifices, debians and redhats living together! Mass hysteria!

Why don't they just fork from Ubuntu (4, Funny)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359033)

Seriously.

Continuing a Subject sentence in the Comment (0, Redundant)

jonaskoelker (922170) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359233)

Is really annoying.

Why don't they just fork from Ubuntu?

I suggest you take a look at Utnubu (http://wiki.debian.org/Utnubu). It's a debian (sub)project to cannibalize all the good parts from Ubuntu. One of their goals is to "Collaborate with Ubuntu: Reduce duplicate effort, join efforts, try to co-maintain packages compatible for Debian and Ubuntu."

What would be gained by doing a carbon copy rather than stealing only the good bits?

Please, we want Debian 4.1, not 5.0 (1)

wikinerd (809585) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359057)

Stop seeking .0 releases. Debian 4.0 Etch users want Debian 4.1, not 5.0, because a .1 release can come out much more quickly and with less potential for bugs than a .0 release. What I would like to have is a 4.1 release, followed by a 4.2 and 4.3, and potentially a 4.4 release, which will all make small incremental improvements and risk-free popular package updates within short timeframes, and only then a 5.0 release with lots of new but more riskier package updates and maybe also architectural changes if any.

I run Debian Lenny on the desktop along with many sid and custom stuff. On the servers side I still run etch 4.0, with only a few volatile and custom stuff. I can say that Lenny is surprisingly stable for a testing branch, and that choosing a few packages from it to release as Debian 4.1 would be a great thing, but I can see that a 5.0 release with all packages would probably take some time, albeit not too much as I can see that work progresses quickly (I download newest packages regularly and my bugs get fixed every few weeks, although a few packages seem to be stagnant).

Please, Debian, give us a stable 4.1 now, a "mini-lenny" just to keep ourselves (for the server side at least, as I expect most of us to run lenny on the desktop) an the rest of our userbase and potential new users happy with updates popular packages. After a sucessful 4.1, you can focus on delivering the more time-consuming 5.0, but please first consider a 4.1 or 4.2 before the major step.

Re:Please, we want Debian 4.1, not 5.0 (2, Interesting)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359205)

I am laughing very hard that RHEL tried to say there's no such thing as a '.0' or '.1' release, and it's all 'RHEL 4' or 'RHEL 5'. Take a look at the available media, though, and you'll see that they're really still doing what they did with the old RedHat 6 and RedHat 7: .0 is unstable, .1 has bugfixes, .2 is stable.

Re:Please, we want Debian 4.1, not 5.0 (3, Informative)

idontgno (624372) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359415)

Red Hat marketing may not acknowledge point releases, but they do indeed exist [redhat.com] . And CentOS tracks 'em. That's why I know. (Too cheap for RHEL, too lazy for Fedora. I use Kubuntu for desktops, but the server has always been in the Red Hat lineage.)

Re:Please, we want Debian 4.1, not 5.0 (5, Informative)

Slashdot Parent (995749) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359263)

What I would like to have is a 4.1 release

Well, don't project what you want unto the rest of the world.

Debian stable is a server distro. Every time there is an upgrade, a full regression test must be done to the server. This is expensive and time-consuming. The whole idea of Debian stable is that it is stable and doesn't change often. No one running stable wants the latest and greatest. We want stability and security fixes. That's it.

Clearly you already know about the testing and unstable releases, but did you know about backports and volitile? Volitile is great for things like anti-virus and anti-spam software that you really do want and need upgrades. Backports is a little different--it's basically upgrades for popular packages in stable, and you can pick and choose which ones you want.

Stable means stable, and backports and volitile are great tools to help you. If you want the latest and greatest, that's what the testing release is for.

Re:Please, we want Debian 4.1, not 5.0 (1)

turbidostato (878842) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359329)

"Debian 4.0 Etch users want Debian 4.1, not 5.0, because a .1 release can come out much more quickly and with less potential for bugs than a .0 release. What I would like to have is a 4.1 release, followed by a 4.2 and 4.3, and potentially a 4.4 release, which will all make small incremental improvements and risk-free popular package updates within short timeframes, and only then a 5.0 release with lots of new but more riskier package updates and maybe also architectural changes if any."

So you know personally all "Debian 4.0 Etch users" to know what they want? *I* am a "Debian 4.0 Etch user"; do you really dare say what I want?

Buy I can accept that *you* want a Debian 4.1 then 4.2 then 4.3 prior to Debian 5.0. Well, do you why Lenny is not on date? Because it is not ready. Do you know why is not ready? Because not enough qualified hands.

Now: are you continuing telling what people want (without backing up data, by the way) or will you do something to get what you want?

"Please, Debian, give us a stable 4.1 now, a "mini-lenny""

You do know there's already an "Etch'n half", do you?

Uhm, Good? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359153)

Uhm, Good?

Debian has no release date!!! (4, Informative)

marcosdumay (620877) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359313)

Debian has no release date. It never had, and doesn't seem to have any plans on adopting release dates. Thus, Debian can't be "late", since being late implies on missing a release date, and Debian doesn't have that. Or, maybe I didn't repeat that enough, so let me tell you: Debian never made a compromisse on releasing any version on any exact day.

What Debian does have is a list of bugs. Everytime testing is frozen, it is created a list with the showstopper bugs, and release happens when that list becomes empty. The list can increase if more bugs are found, or decrease if bugs are solved or some functionality removed.

Debian also do have people betting when it'll be out. Those people give specific (or sometimes not very specific) dates, but that isn't a release date for the team, just a guesstimate.

Re:Debian has no release date!!! (5, Insightful)

RAMMS+EIN (578166) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359599)

While I don't dispute the claims you make, I would like to point out that

1. Debian does make announcements about prospective release dates. These aren't firm promises and shouldn't be interpreted as such, but it is disappointing when they miss those dates by months.

2. Releases aren't only made when the bug count drops to zero. First of all, there are bugs that aren't considered "release-critical". Secondly, sometimes (I think this happened with etch) releases are made with known issues and a promise to fix those issues Real Soon Now. Thirdly, the way the bug count is brought to zero usually includes simply throwing out packages that have known bugs. If many people want such a package, that isn't very helpful.

3. Bugs that would have been "release-critical" are often discovered after a release is made. The current stable release, etch, had more release-critical bugs pending against it than lenny (the upcoming stable release), last time I checked.

What all this means is that Debian will _not_ generalyl be released at any date that has been mentioned, and will _not_ generally be bug-free when released.

Having said all that, it's still my favorite operating system, as it takes less of my time to use and maintain than anything else I have tried (and that is quite a lot).

Re:Debian has no release date!!! (2, Insightful)

dedazo (737510) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359909)

Some of those bugs are trivial (some are even documentation-related), so I doubt they are *all* blocking at this point.

To quote Simpsons: (2, Funny)

Verdatum (1257828) | more than 5 years ago | (#25359321)

"Not Lenny!!!!"

Pure Poppycock (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359325)

No open source project has bugs or gets delayed. This story is pure poppycock.
Slashdot told me that only software from Microsoft has these issues.

Geez Slashdot, you tell me one thing one day and then another thing another day.

why not (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359469)

just list all the unstable versions as Vista

ie

Debian Vista (unstable)

then use the correct name (Hardy Heron/Lenny etc) when it`s working properly, people will know what to expect if you label it Vista. :-)

Debbie and Lenny? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359587)

It's good to see they're back together again. They make such a nice couple.

That figure was from almost a week ago... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25359631)

... and now there's less than 200 rc bugs left to be squashed:

http://bts.turmzimmer.net/graph-large.png

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