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RE: Are we in this for ourselves?

bruce@va.debian.org writes ("RE: Are we in this for ourselves?"):
>there's one Debian system for every 100 Red Hat systems now. 

In reality, how much are we really competing with Red Hat?  Granted,
they are gaining more users than we are, but we're growing too.
Greater success on their part doesn't mean a lack of success on ours.

>The subscriptions on our mailing lists are half of what they used to

Heck, a good portion of this is people that don't have the time to
read and sort out several hundred messages a day.  It's just that
Debian has grown to the point where the mailing lists, number of
available package, number of developers are all rather ponderous in
size.  It's one of the unfortunate by-products of success and growth.

It used to be that Debian management wasn't such an issue---the small
number of users and developers worked things out amongst themselves.
We've just grown to the point that that's not possible anymore---we
need some semblence of management.

>I find this distressing, because I feel that the work I put into Debian
>is being enthusiasticaly thrown away by developers who want it to be nothing
>more than their personal hobby.

Debian Linux isn't just a hobby for me, it's a significant part of my
job (the majority of our Unix machines, which are used heavily for
research, are Debian, and the fraction is still growing).  A lot of
what you are calling "want it to be nothing more than their personal
hobby" is often developers simply expressing the particular
requirements that they themselves need.  

For example, the design of Debian Linux for multi-user, 24/7 use
integrated with multiple other *nix platforms in an NIS environment is
greatly superior to any other Linux out there (for the similar
environment, I have tried, tested, and rejected Redhat 5.0, SuSe, and
others because they are plainly a b*tch to install and maintain in
this environment).  The fact that Debian does that and still provides
a good traditional Linux "run it at home, mostly single user" type
system is commendable.

Folks, lets work out our management problems instead of bickering.

Richard W Kaszeta 			Graduate Student/Sysadmin
bofh@me.umn.edu				University of MN, ME Dept

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