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Canonical Could Switch To Rolling Releases For Ubuntu 14.04 and Beyond

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the move-'em-on,-head-'em-up dept.

Operating Systems 222

massivepanic writes "For the longest time Canonical has slapped an LTS ("long term support") moniker on some of their Ubuntu releases. Currently, a new major release of the operating system happens every six months, and is supported for 18 months after release. Whereas in the past when LTS versions received two years support or more, the current model — starting with 12.04 — supports new LTS releases for five years. However, a recent public Google Hangouts session revealed that Canonical has been thinking about switching from the venerable LTS model to a rolling release, starting with version 14.04."

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222 comments

Im sure their users will love it (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42663827)

all three of them.

But...Unity. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42663869)

One small thing... Unity.

Re:But...Unity. (5, Insightful)

mug funky (910186) | about a year and a half ago | (#42663963)

the amount of bitching i hear about unity versus the amount of time it takes to install something else (TM) is ridiculous.

too lazy to apt-get install, but too vehement to shut the fuck up about it online.

nerds are strange.

Re:But...Unity. (2)

drankr (2796221) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664389)

What makes you think that people who criticize Unity still run it?
Anyway people who for some reason feel the need to defend this shell online seem far more angry and aggressive than its detractors.

Re:But...Unity. (3, Funny)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664577)

What makes you think that people who criticize Unity still run it?

If they don't run it, then why do they care enough to come on Slashdot and post about it every time Ubuntu is mentioned? Do they have some sort of psychiatric issue that prevents them from behaving like normal human beings?

Re:But...Unity. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664801)

If you think people commenting about Unity while not actively using it is bad, you'd better not look into the Windows 8 threads. You'd probably have an aneurysm.

Re:But...Unity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664857)

You over-credit normal human beings.

Re:But...Unity. (2)

davydagger (2566757) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665807)

because it sucks, and they had to use it for 3 seconds before installing something else. Its kind of a wish that things would "just work" out of the box, like they did in 11.10 and 11.04.

Normal human beings aren't allowed to have negtive opinions or critize things?

I think you might need the meds actually.

Re:But...Unity. (5, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664475)

Me thinks you miss the whole point. If you piss off most of your user base the answer is not "just install something else" the answer is FIX the dang mess you made.

But I see Ubuntu swirling the drain, They are making moron decisions, and getting worse. But everyone else is as well. . Fedora 18 is also a steaming pile of doo-doo..

So Linux follows it's normal cycle of every 7 years making it crappy to the point that it get's reborn again. Mandrake was king until they pooched that one, then they died and Ubuntu rose from the ashes... Ubuntu is now pooched, so let's see who rises from the ashes this time.

Re:But...Unity. (3, Insightful)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665621)

Look into OpenSUSE, then.

The 11.x/12.x releases have been pretty consistently good for me.

Even better... no Unity to complain about.

(Never saw what the big buzzy was over Ubuntu in any case. I tried it a couple of times and found it marginally acceptable, but annoying.)

Re:But...Unity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664527)

And yet instead of shutting the fuck up about it online... you choose to bitch.

Re:But...Unity. (1)

oztiks (921504) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664713)

It's not about that, it's Linux, we use Linux because of its flexibility. Unity is an attempt to force Ubuntu users into something (worse) than say Gnome-Classic. They have dropped the support and "swagger" they used to have for Gnome-Classic and now its an unpolished hack job. That's the problem!

Re:But...Unity. (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664901)

you don't get it, do youj? Canonical doesn't spend time refining a good UI to be the default of their wares, instead they dissipate energy polishing a turd. so they are abandoned.

Re:But...Unity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664933)

Unity was so bad, I couldn't even figure out how to open a shell/terminal in Unity to apt-get-rid of it.

Re:But...Unity. (2)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665181)

I'm amused every time Unity is discussed. That is hilarious, though.

"apt-get-rid unity"

Hilarious!

I suppose that I should point out that if you couldn't alt-F1 to get a terminal, then you're not really a Linux guy at all. But, hell, you made me laugh, so I'm not going to beat up on you!

Re:But...Unity. (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665651)

Wrong. The default key binding for Yakuake is F12. Alt+F1 brings up the KDE menu.

I guess if you don't know that, you're really not a Linux guy, after all, are you?

Re:But...Unity. (2)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665809)

You guys need a Penguin key.

Re:But...Unity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42665125)

I don't know why they don't just try a variant like Kubuntu or Xubuntu...

Re:But...Unity. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42665485)

mug funky is my hero for saying what needed to be said!

Re:But...Unity. (3, Interesting)

falconwolf (725481) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665771)

the amount of bitching i hear about unity versus the amount of time it takes to install something else (TM) is ridiculous.

I volunteer for an organization that collects old and used PCs then builds new ones with the good parts from the old ones. We then install Ubuntu. Until the start of 2013 we used Ubuntu 10.04, however with the new year we switched to Xubuntu 12.04. Some of the people in the organization don't like the new DE Canonical is using, Unity. As ease of use is one of the criteria we use, I suggested that we use Linux Mint as studies and surveys rate it as the easiest. However no one replied. Not right now, as I'm booted into Snow Leopard, but I have Ubuntu 12.04 installed on my Mac to dual-boot.

Falcon

Re:But...Unity. (1)

davydagger (2566757) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665795)

gnome-shell user here.

I'm running 3.4 on 12.04, and will be using XFCE when upgrading because 3.6 breaks all my extensions.

Yay, I think? (4, Insightful)

waddgodd (34934) | about a year and a half ago | (#42663879)

I like the idea of rolling releases, but given the amount of massively stupid crap that Ubuntu springs on us by just rolling it into a new release (unity, I'm looking at you), I also like the idea of freezing a Ubuntu box at a non-ugly release and having a box that at least receives security updates for a few years

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

slashdyke (873156) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664087)

I concur!

Re:Yay, I think? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664177)

Already have a distro that does that. I believe it is called "Debian".

Re:Yay, I think? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664455)

Already have a distro that does that. I believe it is called "Debian".

Yeah, but does it come with Unity?

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664481)

Yeah, but does it come with Unity?

No, and that's the point.

Re:Yay, I think? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664593)

Having fun with your brand new Gnome3 wheezy desktop? har har har!

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665241)

Actually, my Debian has Mate, Cinnamon, Openbox, LXDE, and Enlightenment all installed. Linux Mint DEBIAN Edition works just fine. No Gnome3, no Unity, no KDE. Thanks for your interest!

Re:Yay, I think? (4, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664875)

"Already have a distro that does that. I believe it is called "Debian"."

Odd name. Is it a fork of Ubuntu? (runs)

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

substance2003 (665358) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664909)

You make it sound like Debian is the only one to do such a thing. Arch has been doing it that way for years as well.

Linux Mint also started to do rolling releases not too long ago. I find that one a bit Ironic since it's derived from Ubuntu.
Those are just two from the more popular distros. There are many more out there we could count.
Rolling releases are one thing I would applaud Ubuntu if they did it. It's always been my pet peeve to have to upgrade to a newer version of the same distro every 6 months.

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665273)

" I find that one a bit Ironic since it's derived from Ubuntu. "

Sorry, but you're in error there.

"Mainline" Linux Mint is derived from Ubuntu. And, I don't think they are doing rolling releases, as they depend on Ubuntu.

HOWEVER, Linux Mint Debian is a rolling release. It is NOT based on Ubuntu, but on Debian. LMDE is currently at Update Pack 6, while Linux Mint is still using the older, more standard version releases.

Re:Yay, I think? (2)

aliquis (678370) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665599)

Personally I'm the other way around I guess.

For me it would suck to have things break 1-2 times each half year because I was running a rolling release.

Now would that happen? I don't know. But it's likely more likely.

Even now I had my KDE break for close to a week I believe because I got the latest Qt which for whatever reason broke on 64-bit machines or whatever.

But then I do run the latest KDE 4.9 repository for my openSUSE 12.2.

Maybe rolling release would be somewhat more stable for KDE but less stable for the rest of the OS compared to my configuration. So that may have been unfair of me to say.

Personally I was attracted by Linux Mint approach of backing up your choices and $HOME and install it all from scratch each time. Make it easy to replace bigger parts of the system without things failing while doing so.

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

oursland (1898514) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665731)

Lies!

I'm rockin' Debian "unstable" and it is frozen, and has been for some time. No new packages or updates will be accepted until the next Debian release is made, unless they are of a bugfix nature. Gnome 3 is stuck at Gnome 3.2, but Ubuntu 12.10 is rollin' Gnome 3.6, and it behaves much, much better.

In short, Debian is not a "rollling release" right now, nor is it current, even in the "unstable" branch. God have mercy on those fools who try to work with "stable" or "testing."

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

davydagger (2566757) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665843)

12.04 has gnome 3.4.

LTS is the only thing that makes gnome-shell worth it, as they break extensions ever point release. all my extensions that weren't broken by 3.4 where broken by 3.6

it makes the amount of work needed to maintain quality extensions prohibative for developers who have a life doing something other than re-writing their extensions every six months.

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664201)

The reason people use LTS is because they can't afford downtime due to changes that suddenly cause things to stop working. I understand they don't want to support old stuff, but that's entirely the point. Some people require stability. Luckily there's plenty of choices. If they make this change, I'll just expand what I used on mission critical servers more. It's slightly less user friendly, but what can I do?

Re:Yay, I think? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664471)

LTS won't be affected, just the interim releases that come between them.

Re:Yay, I think? (4, Insightful)

bcrowell (177657) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664653)

I've tried using LTS on some machines, but it hasn't worked out well. The trouble with it is that Ubuntu's quality is crap, and that applies to LTS releases just as much as non-LTS. For instance, they started gratuitously breaking sound with Jaunty, and as of Precise it's still broken on some machines I use. When important stuff is randomly broken in an LTS release, you end up upgrading to a non-LTS to see if they've fixed the bug.

The root problem is that Ubuntu is more interested in random, useless crap like Unity and ALSA than they are in just fixing bugs and making something that works. Rolling releases won't make that any better or worse. You'll get the bug fixes sooner, but you'll also get new bugs sooner.

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

Junta (36770) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665095)

This is unfortunately the natural consequence of arbitrarily declaring certain releases 'LTS' without a distinc development cycle.

By the time Debian or Red Hat release something as stable, enthusiasts are generally underwhelmed because the content is ancient from the second it is 'released'. An Ubuntu LTS release enjoys a brief period of appearing fresher, but that comes at a price, quality wise.

Canonical is in an unfortunate position where, as a business, they can't figure out a way 'in'. They are a very popular server distro, but only in the free context where Canonical sees little to no benefit. They had a pretty strong hold over the Linux desktop (IMO largely due to better following upstream whilst the others crammed more and more distro-specific junk in, also due to the change in philosophy the Fedora name represented for RH users), but they haven't been able to derive a business plan. Then they went for embedded TV with a shameless rip off of a third party samsung tv firmware, but that went no where. Now they are making the same noise about phone and will meet the same end as the TV.

Re:Yay, I think? (2)

kriston (7886) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665177)

Having used the Ubuntu LTS releases, I cannot disagree with this sentiment. On most systems I have returned to Red Hat Enterprise, or, more specifically, the CentOS derivatives, for quality releases. In my experience, the Ubuntu LTS releases aren't tested to the high standard that the Red Hat Enterprise releases are, but I expected that, to be honest, and wasn't surprised at all.

Re: Yay, I think? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42665559)

Neither is any of the ones you just mentioned. Perception is a glass mirror.

Re:Yay, I think? (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665223)

Linux Mint Debian basically does that. They release the "update pack", and the user has to intentionally install it. Currently, LMDE is at UP6. The wife decided to update, she just went ahead and ran the updater without reading any of the release notes. Luckily, she got through the process without any problems. I did warn her to READ the release notes, AND to WAIT until a few days after release. At which time, it would be wise to browse the forums, looking for problems that people found during the update.

Yeah, rolling releases are great, if handled properly. Handled improperly, they can bork a system. I managed to trash a Sabayon system in the process of learning how good rolling releases are.

This could have been interesting. (2)

UltraZelda64 (2309504) | about a year and a half ago | (#42663885)

That is, if Canonical didn't already shoot themselves and their distro in the foot in every way possible.

frequency of updates is unlikely to change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42663893)

Ubuntu already has frequent updates, with the packages I have installed it's a rare day that doesn't have at least one, and a week with no updates is just about unheard of.

a rolling release would just mean that there would be more things changed in the update, and that the updates would go to new versions of software rather than old versions with backported fixes (a combination that's not tested outside of Ubuntu)

I think this would be a very interesting thing to do

David Lang

Re:frequency of updates is unlikely to change (3, Interesting)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about a year and a half ago | (#42663955)

It's not the new versions of existing packages that are the downside of this. It's the deal where they might roll out a whole new UI or privacy sucking 'feature'.

Right now I am sitting on 12.04 with a Gnome UI. I don't plan on going anywhere for a couple of years. When I do it's going to be a distro that makes sense, and that is likely to mean NOT Ubuntu.

Re:frequency of updates is unlikely to change (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664403)

Centos 6.3 still has Gnome by default and I've found it to be quicker than Ubuntu

Re:frequency of updates is unlikely to change (1)

SteveFoerster (136027) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664873)

I'm in the same position. All my machines run 12.04 LTS, and since that will be supported until 2017 I have plenty of time to see how the UI situation shakes out.

So, they've given up on stability. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42663915)

It doesn't surprise me, considering how shit their stability and reliability has been lately, they might as well stop wasting resources pretending like they care about testing their releases.

There's a reason why nearly all OSes have releases that they update only sporadically as needed, it makes it much more efficient to identify bugs, security flaws and not break things unexpectedly.

Re:So, they've given up on stability. (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664031)

There's a reason why nearly all OSes have releases that they update only sporadically as needed, it makes it much more efficient to identify bugs, security flaws and not break things unexpectedly.

Which worked fine until all the OSes decided they had to support web services and cloud storage. Now you have to update every week since Facebook (or whoever) changes their API every time you blink.

Re:So, they've given up on stability. (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664919)

that only need change a library in a package, that's no reason nor call to have an unstable distribution. any LTS or solid distro like Debian can support a Facebook API from a repository of such similar transient unsteady wares

Re:So, they've given up on stability. (1)

hazah (807503) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665325)

The real issue is pretending that facebook (and the like) matters to an OS. If you take that away, what are the chances that this retardeness would manifest itself?

They had better leave server LTS alone.. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42663927)

Although, there was this in the article:

Assuming switching to a rolling release between LTS versions doesn’t disrupt Ubuntu’s growth in any way, the casual Ubuntu user doesn’t really have to pay too much attention to the switch should it happen, though they might get a little annoyed at the probably-higher frequency of software updates. To satiate the more in-depth user, Canonical could theoretically put out a test version in between the LTS releases, which would also help cut down on bugs in the LTS.

Which leads me to believe that this is targeted at the desktop builds, but the article was a bit skim on details.

If they dropped LTS for their server builds, I guarantee Ubuntu's popularity would drop faster than a whale out of the sky.

Re:They had better leave server LTS alone.. (2)

turbidostato (878842) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664141)

"If they dropped LTS for their server builds, I guarantee Ubuntu's popularity would drop faster than a whale out of the sky."

LTS is needed for (corporate) desktops too.

There's no way for a business to support a rolling release, not even a software development focused company. This means that Canonical either feels it already has a strong enough grip on corporations, so they can play the Red Hat/Fedora game or that they are simply crazy (just crazy, thinking they can retain a corporate grip out of their current position and a so-called "developer-friendly" rolling release which in the end is everything but developer-friendly, or absolutly crazy if they think they can get any business out of a somehow "pure" rolling-release base).

My opinion is that Canonical has lost any sense of the importance of technical ability and its weight in their long term plans (it's not only their marketing-driven changes from release to release, but the lack of proper QA or the lack of understandment of what "stability" really is and what's its value) and as such it's going to go the dodo way, not in a year or two, but yes in half a decade. The future of Ubuntu? Look for instance at Madrake's history and you will know.

Re:They had better leave server LTS alone.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664267)

We have a 250 desktop deployment of Ubuntu. We started looking at switching when Unity was announced. If they drop LTS, we are going to Debian + XFCE.

Done.

Re:They had better leave server LTS alone.. (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664491)

You should already start your migration to Debian+XFCE. you will be ahead of the game if you do.

Re:They had better leave server LTS alone.. (1)

hazah (807503) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665341)

Just do it. You will thank yourself in the end. Ubuntu = Dodo

Re:They had better leave server LTS alone.. (4, Insightful)

natoochtoniket (763630) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664565)

I have a half dozen programmers and four (4) IT people, to support a site of several thousand hosts. Most of those hosts are in clusters, of course...

We have to verify and validate the software, put it on thousands of hosts, and then run it until the next upgrade. The name of the game is "stable". We don't want to upgrade the OS any more often than is absolutely required by the application.

Rolling releases are a complete non-starter for us. Sure, they are easier to support from the OS vendors perspective. But, they are absolutely unacceptable for customer whose primary business requirements for the platform are "stable" and "predictable".

Binomial Nomenclature (2)

cervesaebraciator (2352888) | about a year and a half ago | (#42663931)

But how will the alliterative critters be named then?

Re:Binomial Nomenclature (1)

hazah (807503) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665355)

Pick a name and run with it. Honestly... really stupid question when the answer is "any fucking thing you like". May I refer you to the concept of "Liberty"?

Bandwagon (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42663961)

Rolling Release is just the new catchphrase. All the cool kids want it, so it's natural Comical would jump on the bandwagon.

Great (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42663991)

Now broken code will get release much faster!
Tell me, have they ever addressed the LDAP bug that's been sitting in a queue for 2+ years. I mean, it's not like anybody would want to use LDAP or anything...

google "gsettings LDAP ubuntu"

https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/libnss-ldap/+bug/974938 [launchpad.net]
https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/gsettings-desktop-schemas/+bug/873403 [launchpad.net]

Last I checked 2 months ago, this same shit happens on a fully up to date 12.04 machine and the first reports were rolling in back in 2011 about this issue.

It's a joke distro.

Re:Great (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664181)

"Tell me, have they ever addressed the LDAP bug that's been sitting in a queue for 2+ years."

That's impossible!

Well, they close the bugs if no further feedback is given in, what? fifteen days? or when the next release is launched.

"It's a joke distro."

Basically yes. It's a pity all that effort wasn't pushed into Debian (and in the Debian way, of course -the worst problem is that Ubuntu has pushed some of its bad manners into Debian too by means of young developers that don't know any better).

Be careful (5, Insightful)

countach (534280) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664147)

If they're going to dump LTS, they need to be REAL careful about what shit they push out. I used Linux for many many years, but finally I just got tired of stuff breaking all the time, and switched to Mac OS, where Apple seems to be reasonably careful not to annoy me too much with their updates. Maybe Linux got better since then, but I doubt it judging by some of the discussions I read about on Slashdot, like massive controversies still going on about KDE vs Gnome, as well as major about faces going on WITHIN KDE and Gnome, AND talk of distros even going away from KDE and Gnone entirely. I don't mind things changing, even largish changes, but you ought to be REAL careful to make it smooth, and I don't see it happening.

Re:Be careful (5, Informative)

gQuigs (913879) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664221)

No one is talking about removing the LTSs. The rolling release would replace the non-LTS releases. So the releases would be:
14.04
Rolling Release up until
16.04
Rolling Release up until
18.04
etc

If anything it migth strengthen the LTS.

Re:Be careful (1)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664723)

If anything it migth strengthen the LTS.

If it would strengthen the LTS, then why aren't Ubuntu users switching to the interrim releases instead of using the LTS?

Re:Be careful (2)

oursland (1898514) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665801)

They aren't?

I left Debian because they decided that freezing their rolling release "unstable" branch was needed for many months before their next official release. I switched to Ubuntu 12.10 (an Interim release) and gained improvements in Kernel, GUI, and utilities. If Ubuntu would go with a rolling release, I'd be pleased as punch.

Some choose LTS for some really reasons. My company (software developer) long stood by Ubuntu 8.04. Now they're regretting that decision. New employees are trying to get an install, but lo-and-behold, none of the servers have the needed updates or packages for that old and now unsupported release. Other issues arise with trying to move to the current LTS 12.04, as none of the software we're working on doesn't compile with the newer libraries.

Whose fault is that? I blame my company, we depend upon broken anachronisms and aren't putting in the effort to try to stay current (like our customers).

Re:Be careful (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664845)

Agreed. 14.04 will still be supported for 5 years, 16.04 for 5 years, etc. The rolling release jsut means more updates in the OS. Personally I'd like this better, I like to be with the new releases and experiment with the new features, but everytime I install a new version of Ubuntu it mucks up a setting I had before..

Re:Be careful (3, Insightful)

wvmarle (1070040) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665265)

Agreed. 14.04 will still be supported for 5 years, 16.04 for 5 years, etc. The rolling release jsut means more updates in the OS. Personally I'd like this better, I like to be with the new releases and experiment with the new features, but everytime I install a new version of Ubuntu it mucks up a setting I had before..

So with the rolling release you risk having some setting mucked up any time, without warning. Instead of having it mucked up when you install a new release, where the mere fact of installing a new release IS the warning that some settings will be mucked up (if only for the simple reason of changed functionality).

Doesn't sound like an improvement to me.

Re:Be careful (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42665827)

Yep, sounds like Debian testing (rolling) and stable (LTS) to me.

Re:Be careful (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664243)

Since when is LINUX == Ubuntu? WTF is wrong with you?

Re:Be careful (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664283)

You should have stuck with real Debian, or moved to FreeBSD.

Re:Be careful (1)

lister king of smeg (2481612) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664843)

The problem with that is debian has been making it harder to get non free software in a misguided attempt to appease stalman and the fsf to be a Gnu approved distro, and Bsd has far less software and hardware support

Re:Be careful (1)

hazah (807503) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665415)

This is not a "misguided attempt at appeasing stalman", it's the realization that there is a limit to how much you can fuck with another human being's ability to not become a criminal for no other reason than a stupid technicality, and it's the refusal to do so when given the opportunity. Imagine... there are people out there that are NOT out to fuck you over... what a concept.

Re:Be careful (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664741)

I have way more problems having to reboot my OSX laptop because of updates than I ever do my Debian desktops. But then again I don't use Gnome (or KDE... Openbox or XFCE for the win!) Seriously, I have yet to see a distro do upgrades as well as Debian. People complain about them being slow, but you don't hear complaints about Debian having annoying updates. The only time I need to reboot is due to installing a new kernel or libc and that happens infrequently.

Slashdot is for fucking niggers up the goatse (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664157)

Fuck Slashdot and your ubuntu fanboys. I hope you drown in a river of nigger piss.

Re:Slashdot is for fucking niggers up the goatse (1)

hazah (807503) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665461)

We would, but your bladder is the size of a thimble. Best we could master is stepping on a drop here and there. Good luck though!

Good (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664179)

Updating systems every few months was very time consuming. Why do you have to re-download every single application just to do an operating system update?

the normal releases should be rolling (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664191)

from what i see the users that currently don't mind updating/prefer to update every 6 months would rather it be a rolling release. this is what i had recommended/requested back when i used ubuntu exclusively. the 6 month releases are not especially bleeding edge or stable right now anyways it might as well be rolling and remove the hassle of trying to guess when it's safe to move to the new version. for these users ubuntu's package versions are too old anyways. the users who just want their security and stability updates but for things to stay the way they are can stay on the lts for 5 years. i think this would be clearer to users and give canonical some wiggle room for testing. maybe have two tracks on the rolling release: testing and stable

Partial rolling release might be a good thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664231)

Probably the best solution is to standardize on a set of applications as is done now and then set critical packages that need to be updated (think firefox), hplip (HP printers), and kernel to rolling.

Actually what I'd probably suggest is give the user the option of subscribing to a backports repository which would provide updates to critical packages. These would not be security updates but regular updates. IE the latest stable kernel, the latest stable hplip release, the latest stable firefox release, etc.

Things like the desktop manager should remain static.

ThinkPenguin's solved the problem though of supporting hardware. They simply stock the parts which work with current LTS releases. So even though you may not be able to get a printer that works out of the box with the latest LTS release from HP any more you can get it from ThinkPenguin. Without ThinkPenguin the hardware support for Linux really sucks.

Because there's already an LTS Ubuntu: Debian (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664253)

The thing is, there was a time when Debian Testing was very unstable and the ability to install drivers and property software was very convalescent. This days are no more. Now you can even run Unstable, let alone Testing mostly troubles frees and you'll find separate packages with very good integration for property stuff.
One example is the nvidia driver which was packages into Experimental the same day it was released and after updating worked bug free.
There's also now the fracturing of the firmware drivers (ralink, realtek...) that are now found in multiple packages so you don't have to risk all your stack just for one WAN driver.

Most importantly however is the the multiarch is mostly mature for the end user: Almost all the packages were transitions and now you can install foreign libraries of all kinds troubles free. The cross compile is still a work in progress but that just means it's either equal or surpassing other distributions.

Honestly, Ubuntu is choosing to start rolling because it's more than likely within the next few month the Debian base will be so rock solid it won't make much sense to fork out every few month so they might as well start pulling from Debian's repositories directly or on a very regular - weekly - basis.

Re:Because there's already an LTS Ubuntu: Debian (1)

rubycodez (864176) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665009)

no, while Debian outstanding for servers it lacks polish and attention to configuration detail for the desktop. things won't "just work", they'll take hours of forum time and twiddling configs. I've made Debian desktops work well, but I've 15 years experience working with GNU/Linux distributions...."normal" people aren't going to have the patience like some of us

Re:Because there's already an LTS Ubuntu: Debian (1)

hazah (807503) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665537)

I would love to get a bit more on this... What did you find *not* working... I'm actually looking for a replacement for Ubuntu. Been through slackware and gentoo.. I'm honestly leaning towards gentoo again. (I've asked this before, the general scense I get is that Debian is up to it, but would love as many second opinions as possible (don't wanna compile).)

Re:Because there's already an LTS Ubuntu: Debian (1)

oursland (1898514) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665821)

I run Debian "unstable" at work. They have frozen it for months now and it will remain that way until the next "stable" release comes out. "Unstable" is running kernel 3.2 and Gnome 3.2. The current kernel is 3.7 and Gnome is 3.2.

Ergo, Debian "unstable" is not a rolling release nor is it current or "unstable".

Re:Because there's already an LTS Ubuntu: Debian (1)

thue (121682) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665825)

Debian is no substitute for Ubuntu LTS. If you look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debian#Release_history [wikipedia.org] , Debian releases have generally only been supported for 3 years. Ubuntu LTS is supported for 5 years. The extra 2 years of not being forced to dist-upgrade a stable working system just to get security upgrades are very useful!

bound to happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664291)

they're already scraping the bottom of the barrel for names.

It's all because of Unity (0)

OhANameWhatName (2688401) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664753)

Canonical dropped a POS with Unity, lost over half of their user base and destroyed any credibility they have.

Solution? Have a way to update all of the LTS's to remove the rubbish unilaterally and thoughtlessly forced upon those users who couldn't stand it.

The problem isn't that Canonical can't undo the mistake they've made, the problem is that Canonical made that mistake in the first place. And here comes the next mistake, rolling releases. It's like watching a train wreck in slow motion where everything that made the train great is slowly being crumpled under the weight of the impact.

Re:It's all because of Unity (2)

LingNoi (1066278) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665145)

Except unity isn't a mistake in their eyes or the people that like it, myself included. It's a much better UI then Gnome ever was in my eyes.

Re:It's all because of Unity (1)

tftp (111690) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665333)

Except unity isn't a mistake in their eyes or the people that like it, myself included. It's a much better UI then Gnome ever was in my eyes.

That's exactly why when you install the latest Ubuntu it asks you what desktop you want - GNOME, KDE, Unity, or a few other. Different systems require different software, of course, and Ubuntu people understand it well.

What you are saying? They don't ask you anything? Hmm. It's a bug then. Open Source is not about cramming stuff down the customers' throats regardless of customers' needs. Even the majority of sane commercial ISVs can't afford that - they respect their customers. Unfortunately, a few operators in F/OSS like to say "you paid nothing, you are not entitled to an opinion, take it as is or leave it, I don't care." For some reason I prefer vendors who care and try to solve my need - even if it costs me some money. I will be better off in the end. Money comes and goes, but if you install a badly designed product you will be suffering for a long, long time.

Re:It's all because of Unity (1)

LingNoi (1066278) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665427)

but if you install a badly designed product you will be suffering for a long, long time.

It's not, I like Ubuntu and I like the Unity desktop environment.

Re:It's all because of Unity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42665767)

Except unity isn't a mistake in their eyes or the people that like it, myself included. It's a much better UI then Gnome ever was in my eyes.

Talk about damning with faint praise...

Pro move (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664803)

So, they sucked up the UI, making it roughly on par with Windows 8.

Now, they're going to emulate Firefox, I mean, Chrome's rapid versioning system.

What's next? Zero day exploits left unfixed? Excessive licensing/support costs?

It's like Canonical is trying to be MS in a Linux world.

Re:Pro move (0)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665775)

More like Canonical trying to be MS trying to be Apple, but otherwise agreed.

Big fan of long-term releases (3, Interesting)

kriston (7886) | about a year and a half ago | (#42664917)

I'm a big fan of long-term releases, only because I may be one of those individuals who might be responsible for systems that do not have access to the internet in order to support the "rolling release" model.

It's nice to be able to have a stable, known-good server installation on several isolated networks that just need an occasional update of dpkgs and completely expect it to work fine after it's been restarted. I don't think the same is expected in a rolling release model.

The idea that a rolling release maintains binary compatibility is, so far, been proven false. In our world, long-term releases make sense.

Re:Big fan of long-term releases (1)

wvmarle (1070040) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665321)

I'm a big fan of long-term releases, only because I may be one of those individuals who might be responsible for systems that do not have access to the internet in order to support the "rolling release" model.

I'm also a fan of those long term releases, for other reasons. That 20 Mbit fibre link is reliably enough, still on 10.04LTS here.

Reason: it works. It receives important updates (Firefox is at latest release), security updates, etc. All the while keeping my interface the same, the basic set of applications the same, and most importantly: it works.

Rolling releases mean any time, any day you may receive a very different UI. You may have applications replaced. Functionality seriously changed. All those big changes that are now rolled out every half year or so in one go (and where you KNOW a big change is bound to happen - like replacement of Gnome by Unity) are spread out over time, and when they're released or when you're going to get them, you don't know. It's as if you're running a perpetual beta version, that's still being polished and worked on.

Sounds great for experimental and hobby systems, not for systems where you want to get work done. Like my workstation at office. Or my system at home.

Oh yes I like to play around with it now and then too, but in the end of the day when I want to print something, it has to print. When I want to quickly edit a photo or a document, it has to do this, preferably in the same way as it was done yesterday and last week. And this stability is what LTS offers, and what even a six-month release cycle offers (especially if you can safely skip a release as support doesn't stop instantly).

Rolling release...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42664999)

Sure...why not.It really has worked for FireFox, hasn't it?

About FUCKING TIME! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42665231)

I hate it when half your shit breaks because you upgraded Ubuntu and too many things changed at once. Maybe with rolling releases they can do more gradual package upgrades that won't hose your system every six months.

So your saying (1)

jameshofo (1454841) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665363)

The amazon search bar will re-install itself every 6 months!

the best thing about Ubuntu are the forks made from it

FreeBSD (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#42665433)

If you are looking for quality and stability might I recommend FreeBSD?

I've run FreeBSD releases with -release ports installed. I don't have to monkey with the system until the next time a release is tagged. You could track changes (-releng) and compile them for a specific release if you wanted to have the "LTS" experience. The APIs are stable with a major release number so I just do binary updates with each minor release. I am at most 6 months behind on things like XFCE and LIbreoffice, but then I have to do very little putzing with my computer. I just use it.

Regards,
Jason C. Wells

Steam success (3, Interesting)

failedlogic (627314) | about a year and a half ago | (#42665815)

Purely speculation here but part Steam seems to be promoting Ubuntu for their Linux-based Steam client. Games often require patching to get acceptable or optimal performance. This announcement for Rolling Releases might be directed at keeping Valve / Steam happy.

Anything that improves Linux distros is good news. However, if Steam suddenly gets 100 million Linux gamers, the sudden popularity of Ubuntu (assuming at some point Steam might only work with Ubuntu) might not work in favor of other distros. I'm concerned that it might push too much development resources to get X & Y working which is popular for the gaming community but not for all other Linux / ''Nix users (personal, business, enterprise...).

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