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Re: Distribution

joey@finlandia.Infodrom.North.DE (Martin Schulze) said:

> So bugfixes et cetera still go into a released release (eh published
> release). So we run into the great slackware problem that there are
> tons of version 2.2 (as an example).
> I don't agree to that. [...]

Wait a sec.  I think we have a definition or a perception problem here.

What is debian 0.93R6?
1.  Just the install disk set?
2.  The install disk set plus a frozen set of base packages?
3.  The install disk set plus a frozen complete distribution?

I think it's #1, or maybe (I don't think so) #2, but not #3.

> [...] What about the following:
> released -> debian-0.93
> debian-0.93/binary
>             source
>             ms-dos
>             Packages -> binary/Packages
>             disks
> [...]

But the implications of this directory structure don't support my opinion.

Joey adds to this:

> 	    updates/binary         [ bugfixes and urgent releases only ]
> [...]
> Then it's a static Debian GNU/Linux 0.93R6 for say half a year. Only
> some updates will go into the updates directory. Users who download
> 0.93R6 once won't have to check for everything if they want to have a
> problemless release. They can look at the updates dir. And cdrom
> vendors don't have the problem that their just pressed cd is outdated
> just by publishing it.

"bugfixes and urgent releases only" (?!?!?!?!?!)
Where's the value of incremental upgradeability in this?

If a spiffy new upstream release of some package comes down the pipe,
and is packaged up by the maintainer, it should be made available to
debian users now, IMHO, not six months or so from now.

I think we should adopt the attitude that the distribution packages
on the ftp site are the latest and greatest.  If someone presses a CD
from what he finds there today he's got today's snapshot, and it might
be out of date tomorrow.  That's life.

That said, I'm worried that we've gone through periods where the package
selection available on the FTP site has transient problems.  If someone
presses a CDROM while these transient problems are present, he's casting
the problems into stone (well, plastic) for many of the purchasers of his
CDROM.  If commercial CDROM vendors are going to be pressing CDROMS based
on snapshots taken from our site, we ought to make a greater effort than
we currently do to assure that they've got a working distribution to take
a snapshot of.

On reflection, if my opinion about just what is debian 0.93 is correct,
the current directory structure with its implication that the package set
on the ftp site belongs with the version-numbered release is unfortunate.
Something like this:

             Packages->../a.out-packages  (or perhaps not)


might have been better.  However, it looks like such changes cause more
trouble on the mirrors than it is reasonable to put them through.

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