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Debian vs. FreeBSD as a Web Serving Platform, Part 1

Debian vs. FreeBSD as a Web Serving Platform, Part 1

Posted Feb 24, 2005 16:52 UTC (Thu) by vonbrand (guest, #4458)
In reply to: Debian vs. FreeBSD as a Web Serving Platform, Part 1 by tzafrir
Parent article: Debian vs. FreeBSD as a Web Serving Platform, Part 1

Don't go around recomending unstable versions for 24x7 jobs (it is called unstable for some reason, isn't it?).

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Debian vs. FreeBSD as a Web Serving Platform, Part 1

Posted Feb 24, 2005 17:36 UTC (Thu) by tzafrir (subscriber, #11501) [Link]

Again, in the context where it was written:

> This is in sharp contrast with FreeBSD where
> only the base system, often referred to as
> kernel and userland, is kept in a constant
> state (with the only exception being security
> updates), while the included applications,
> or ports in FreeBSD's language, are
> continuously updated. This being so, a system
> administrator can choose to keep upgrading all
> important ports to their current stable
> versions and take advantage of any new
> features in them. This is a very pleasant
> aspect of FreeBSD - instead of an endless
> wait one might endure before a new stable
> Debian release, the administrator running
> FreeBSD can upgrade all installed ports to
> their latest versions at any time, independently
> on the base system.

Basically either use Stable+backports or Unstable to get basicalyl the same effect.

BTW: I'd like to see some comparison of the apache configuration in both distros. The Debian mainjtainers of the package bothered doing the extra work to automate as many tasks as possible. e.g.: almost all modules are disabled in the default apache config. There is an extra utility to "enable" modules (and virtual hosts, for apache2).

Debian vs. FreeBSD as a Web Serving Platform, Part 1

Posted Apr 14, 2005 10:14 UTC (Thu) by vinci (guest, #13772) [Link]

No, no, no. Only use "unstable" if you know what you are doing (being a developer or something). So generally NEVER use unstable. If you use it anyway, you will know why.

I had SO MUCH trouble because of people like you recommending unstable years ago, when I started using Debian.


Debian vs. FreeBSD as a Web Serving Platform, Part 1

Posted Apr 8, 2009 0:15 UTC (Wed) by jel (guest, #38548) [Link]

Yes, yes, yes. I started using debian unstable many years ago, and like you, found it difficult. However, it was a lot tougher back then, and there are techniques you can learn to avoid problems, which is no different really from knowing how not to cause yourself problems with a release version. Most debian desktop users run unstable, and the tools and the distribution itself copes very well with making sure you don't burn yourself too badly. It's at least as safe as playing with ports, and probably a LOT more safe.

I also use it on servers, most of the time. The availability of debian unstable's modern, huge selection of managed, up-to-date packages, all downloadable at the stroke of a key, together with a little know-how, is much better than relying on something like a release from CDs.

Unstable stable and testing

Posted Mar 5, 2005 0:47 UTC (Sat) by cricketjeff (guest, #28244) [Link]

While I would never use unstable without a great deal of thought on a busy production server it isn't as drastic as the name implies, unstable doesn't mean the packages are flaky just that the versions and dependencies will change quite rapidly. Testing is a third set of archives and is the "new" stable version in waiting and is usually suitable for immediate use, indeed in my last job we served about 3 billion webpages a year from testing boxes. If you need to use the latest software for one or two packages but want stability for the rest Debian has that covered,
apt-get install -t unstable package-name
will pull the package you want from unstable the apt conf file allowing you to specify stable or testing to be your default distribution.
apt-get install -st unstable package-name
would pretend to do the same thing so you can see what extra packages will need to be pulled for unstable so you can decide whether or not to go ahead.

Unstable stable and testing

Posted Apr 14, 2005 10:24 UTC (Thu) by vinci (guest, #13772) [Link]

It does mean that a packages is there today and gone tomorrow - and you get NO support. This can lead to high frustration. Yes, some packages are very well organized, but "unstable" is not named "testing" for good reasons.

The truth is, and I hate to say that, that Debian today is quite unusable for people who like to use modern software. The concept is outdated. 3 years for a new release is just too much (for me and many others).

I am using Debian right now since 6 years as home server and webserver. I like it very much. But the update policy is a pain.

I don't know what comes into nex 'stable' and when 'stable' comes. That means that I might have to switch to another distribution if I want PHP5, Horde3 ,Gnome 2.10 in the next 4-5 years. We just don't know so many things today about a future release. "Its ready when it's ready" - this is good for a product nobody is eagerly waiting off. I want to know when a next release comes out and what software it will have. It is ok, if that does not fit a 100%. But if you need a certain basis you can not use todays Debian.

But I am optimistic that Debian will make its reforms now and be attractive again, soon. But right now one should not recommend Debian.

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