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Re: switch rh->debian

Joakim Roubert wrote:

I've been running RedHat on my AlphaStation since 1997, but Debian on some various PC:s ever since. I like Debian more -- especially because of the easier upgrades and the better functionality I've experienced.

Now I plan to switch to Debian on my Alpha as well, but before doing that
I'd just like to check if the packages for alpha are as up-to-date (or
almost) as for the i386 Debian.

A friend recommended me to install the stable version and then pin up only
those packages where I need the latest versions, in order to get better functionality. What do you guys think?

Best regards,

/Jokke tmw.

A while back there used to be a "lag" between packages appearing in i386 and the alpha lists. This was mainly due to compilation problems with major packages like KDE and MOZILLA on gcc-2.95. Over the last year or so, I have noticed that this "lag" has virtually disappeared on the packages I have used here. That is by no means ALL of the available packages! I usually update my i386 and alpha installs every couple of days, and the package "updates" are virtually idential on all machines. There are some minor differences due to slightly different package sets installed.

Based on over 3+ years of experience, I would say the answer to your question is that there are no siginificant differences at the moment. That might change during the change-over to gcc 3.2...dunno, since it is hard to predict the future from my position of ignorance <grin>. My sense from following the Debian-Alpha mailing list is that majority of the problems stem from the idiosynchs of the various Alpha "families" hardware differences. Once you get a given Alpha type running, it seems to be extremely stable. You might want to peruse the Debian Alpha mailing list archives over the past year and see what sort of problems others have had with your particular "type" of Alpha. It might save you some headaches....

I would definately install Woody and get familiar with it, then pull in selective packages from "testing" as needed. The Woody dist is a rock-solid starting point, IMHO. The only problem I had here was getting the 2.4.18 kernel to boot, and that was due to the particular CIA chipset my Alpha had. It worked fine with the default 2.2.19 kernel. With the help of more knowledgable list members (Jay Estabrook), I managed to get it going fairly quickly.

-Don Spoon-

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