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Bug#727708: On diversity

Uoti Urpala <uoti.urpala@pp1.inet.fi> writes:

> I think the divergence has gone too far in things like non-Linux ports.
> They have had an overall negative effect on people working on Linux
> within Debian and people creating derivatives.

I have to take exception to this.  There has been a great deal of
*concern* from people over the past two years that the non-Linux ports
*might* have a negative effect on Linux in the context of this particular
discussion.  But, in the meantime, the non-Linux porters have been
first-class Debian contributors over the years.  They have not
substantially gotten in the way of Debian's processes, certainly no more
than any Linux port to a more obscure architecture, and they have
contributed a great many improvements to our software.

For example, I think special thanks should go to the Hurd porters for
extended, thankless work on removing static buffers from the code in the
archive.  They were doing so because some of the constants used to size
those buffers are not portable to the Hurd, but using static buffers to
store paths and related strings is often incorrect regardless of its
portability, and can even be a security issue depending on how the code is
written.  The Hurd porters have provided reasonable patches that can go
back to upstream and result in objectively more robust software.  I have
gotten a steady stream of solid and thoughtful patches from the Hurd
porters for years as a Debian package maintainer, and I appreciate that

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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