Do we need this crap on LWN?
Posted Feb 22, 2007 3:30 UTC (Thu) by markc
In reply to: Do we need this crap on LWN?
Parent article: ESR's goodbye note
> What are those improvements that are
> desperately sought by us?
FWIW, I can only speak from personal experience. I inherited control of a
CentOS 3.6 vhost and was told on some Plesk forums it was not possible to
upgrade to CentOS 4.3 (me gobsmacked). I recently got a VPS with Debian
3.1 installed, within 2 weeks I upgraded it to Ubuntu Dapper then on to
Debian Etch (v4) then back across to Ubuntu Feisty (because Debian doesn't
have a nanoweb package) with zero manual intervention. I was impressed and
would not dare to attempt an analogous path between Redhat and Fedora /
whatever. Maybe experienced RPM based folks are not "desperate" but I was
to upgrade a CentOS 3.6 system so it could run a later Plesk control panel
and, in my worldview, it was not going to be possible.
> The fedora repositories already have a
> huge swag of ready-made packages...
Nyah nyah, my deb fanboy thing is bigger than your rpm fanboy thing. The
fundamental point was that if the RH/Fedora folks started using the deb
system then "we all" would have a much larger combined system than
separately. IMVHO if one or the other system was to be chosen as the base
to extend from then I would imagine most people would pick deb and drop
rpm. It would be interesting to see an open vote on such a decision.
> What is this transitional nightmare?
The current stability of the rpm system is because it has not been
upgraded or hacked on for a few years. Once the developers start coming
out with improved betas I can imagine there will once again be "upgrade
problems". Making a clean break to the deb system *may* be less painful
than ongoing rpm packager updates.
The underlying point is that there is an ever so minute opportunity to
have one single MAJOR packaging format for linux systems and *if* it was
vaguely possible for one of the 2 major players to drop their current
format and go with the other then that opportunity is/was *now*. The
combined resources of both systems would present, essentially, a single
unified linux package system for both commercial and open providers and
such a move would become the single most notable advancement for linux
this decade. One of the reasons this won't happen is because of rpm
fanboyism, as you have clearly demonstrated, so "we" shall remain a
fragmented group of fanboys.
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