[kwlug-disc] definition of debian's "stable"?

Khalid Baheyeldin kb at 2bits.com
Mon Aug 17 12:57:16 EDT 2009

> > - wasn't there something in the news last year or the year before
> > wherein Debian recognized that their packaging system was ungainly,
> > and was going to work with others to harmonize software distribution.
> > i.e. Migrate to rpm / yum?
> That would be news to me.  URL?

Never heard of that either.

> > - these threads point out yet again that 'it should just be easier.'
> > (Got me how to make it so.)
> If the end user uses only the official package repositories, uses a
> GUI that isn't too scary (synaptic is a little scary, but that's
> mostly because of the sheer enormity of the number of packages),
> relies on the auto updater to check for security updates and installs
> them, then it already is pretty easy.
> Because if so, then dependencies are solved for you, software validation
> is solved for you, security is solved for you, and clean package removal
> is even solved for you.
> It's worlds ahead of Windows.  But people who expect it to work like
> Windows will be frustrated or disappointed.

Amen. An the RedHat/CentOS way even!

> > - An earlier list thread pointed out how one should just be able to
> > download a 'package', double-click setup, and get on with their day.
> > And they should be able to repeat that experience on any other
> > machine. That may be a pipe dream, but I can sure appreciate the
> > sentiment.
> This is the Windows mentality that's getting in everyone's way.

Absolutely. Once you get off the rpmfind/foo's rpms/bar's builds mindset
and go to Debian/Ubuntu you can never go back to hunt for rpms.

> Sure, sometimes you do need to download a random package off the interwebs
> and pray that it isn't trojaned.  But with Debian, that need is
> far down the list.  It would be nice if it were easier, but then you
> bring along some of same the security problems that Vista tried to solve
> and got the smack down for.

Even commercial closed source vendors are realizing this. I have two closed
source applications on my laptop: Skype and Opera. Both vendors have
realized that providing a repository is a convenient way to get their user
base to
use they software and stay up to date. Opera provided downloadable .deb for
a while
initially, compiled against various Ubuntu releases. Then they provided a
and even included their .deb in Canonical's non free repository.
Khalid M. Baheyeldin
2bits.com, Inc.
Drupal optimization, development, customization and consulting.
Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability. --  Edsger W.Dijkstra
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. --   Leonardo da Vinci
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