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RE: Is it _really_ dead?

> >Alright I can't just sit quietly any longer. :)  I don't remember
> >all the "flames" on this list that everyone is spouting off about.
> >What I remember was that there was a mixture of emotions of whether
> >this was going to create a fork.  The way I see it there are two
> >possibilities here.
> >

The first issue that comes up in these discussions is the License.
Most Linux systems are GPL/LGPL-based, while BSD's are (of course)
BSD-based.  This is usually enought to ignate a religious war that
causes everyone to go home angry with no work done.

> >First Debian's userland gets a BSD kernel in which case people here
> >should just go off and do it.  Not likely to drum up a lot of coders
> >in the BSD community to help (and it doesn't look like many in the
> >Debian community are interested in it either), though they will
> >probably lend an ear to questions should you have them.
> >

This shouldn't be a big deal -- if BSD's Linux compatibility is workable
it should be fairly easy to do this.

> >There was one other thing mentioned on this list in the early days
> >and it involves replacing the BSD userland with an all GNU userland
> >and I'd don't believe there will be many in the BSD community that
> >will be into supporting such an effort.  You are welcome to try but
> >this IMHO will result in a fork and dividing all of our efforts again
> >in support of another project doesn't help either community.
> >

As far as a Debian solution, we would probably *only* be interested
in providing (1) a Kernel package for existing Debian users, plus
(2) a compatibility tool for using Debian packages withing a standard
BSD framework.  I.e., we wouldn't want to provide separate packages
for BSD for the various applications and add-ons.

One way this might work would be for BSD users to use apt-get on 
the Debian source archive, which would automatically unpack the 
Debian source packages into the BSD ports tree, then run the build
and install automatically.  This seems like it would be quite

> What BSD camp would like though is some way to use the debian's
> extensive package collection, and some way to use any sw if it's 
> already packaged, by let's say debian. Currently Freebsd runs
> linux binaries if one installs a redhat based compatibility 
> package and enables a boot-time option. 
> But the way redhat brings out their distro versions, actually 
> going to redhat site, and trying to install an RPM is not
> something a user like me does. Instead, their are linux 
> compiled packages like acrobat 4, Staroffice 5.2 in FBSD's
> on ftp site, which use the compat feature.
See above for how this could be achieved fairly easily using
apt-get on source packages.

> What Debian Camp (Or a few in the camp) would like is the 
> proof of concept implementation, indicating debian is really
> kernel independant distribution, by incorporating BSD kernel,
> besides gnu-hurd.

As one of the Hurd developers, I can say that Debian is not
perfect with respect to Kernel-neutrality, but it gets better
all the time.  Basically, the effort involved would be to
build Debian packages on a BSD-system, then submit patches
to the Debian maintainer indicating any changes required to
build on BSD.  We have tools to determine system architecture
during the build process, so this isn't too difficult.

> Technically I might be totally missing the point, but this 
> would probably require, C library/compiler essential OS
> utils debian package management sys etc etc bundled with
> BSD kernel.

Maybe -- I'm not sure what all the dependencies would be.
It could be as "simple" as just the Debian-base system with
a BSD kernel (compiled for BSD), followed by the ability for
a user to apt-get source packages to build natively on their
machine.  Then the effort would simply be trying to compile
packages and identify problems, then submit patches to correct
build dependencies, etc., to the upstream Debian maintainer.
This is what we do for the Hurd currently and it works
quite well.
> Now  *bsd also uses GCC compiler, so what parts will actually 
> be diff is not clear to me.
I suspect not mutch if BSD Linux binary compatiblity is
sufficient.  Otherwise, the Debian bootstrap tools would be


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