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Re: Do we still need libc5?

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Florian Weimer <fw@deneb.enyo.de> writes:

> * Jeroen van Wolffelaar:
>> Fact is though that libc6 has been in Debian stable for over 7
>> years, since hamm was releaed mid-1998,
> This suggests that we should give it three more years or something
> like that.

I don't agree.  We have supported it for quite a long time already,
longer than any other distribution, and it hasn't built with a
contemporary toolchain for years.  Who knows what sort of state it's
really in?  Is it even properly compatible with current (> 2.0.x)
kernels, or are there subtle incompatibilities there? (IIRC, there
were some [mmap-related??] last time this was brought up.)

I appreciate that some folks do want to run obsolete proprietary code,
but if they are in that sort of situation, do they really need a
current distribution, or should a suitably-firewalled old system be
sufficient?  Being tied to the past is just one of the prices you pay
when you use proprietary software...

> However, if the packages aren't covered by security support anyway, it
> probably doesn't make a difference to our users if we stop shipping
> them.

We can't provide proper security support, and by now, libc5 is likely
full of holes, so IMO it's best if we drop it.  It's not like there's
any active maintenance or we can do any serious work on it: it's dead

If users need it, they can always grab a sarge (or older) CD and
install from that.  At least then the user is using them at their own
risk--we are not making any claim that it is supported, and since it's
been unsupported for a good 7 years anyway, that's probably for the
best, since we really can't support it as it stands.

>> and I think Debian is like the only living Linux distribution out
>> there still shipping libc5.
> Are you sure?  I would be very surprised if the "enterprise"
> distributions didn't ship it as well.

libc5 hasn't been updated since 1998, and dependent packages mostly
not since 97-98, with some in 99 and 2 in 00.

No trace.

No trace.

- From what I can see, we are the sole distributors of libc5, and IMO
dropping it (and its toolchain) would be a wise move.


- -- 
Roger Leigh
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