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Re: A suggestion

On Wed, Mar 26, 2008 at 08:35:51AM -0700, Mike Bird wrote:
> On Wed March 26 2008 05:51:32 Roberto C. Sánchez wrote:
> > On Wed, Mar 26, 2008 at 12:32:33PM +0530, Unni wrote:
> > > Why the debian can be more interesting? More graphics, more drivers etc.
> > > I think this can be done without a big effort ( correct me if  I am
> > > wrong). I suggest to make this change possible.
> >
> > Ubuntu has already made the effort.  So, if that is what you are looking
> > for, then use Ubuntu.  Debian is targeted at a much wider audience using
> > a much greater variety of hardware in a great many more configurations.
> > Many of those people have no need or desire for the features you
> > describe.
> The OP makes an important point.  Debian is losing users and relevance.

Is this why Debian is still the most often used source distro for making
a derivative?

> Although Debian supports a wider range of architectures than Ubuntu,
> the reality is that Debian now targets a much narrower audience - the
> "old hardware crowd".
> Popcon[0] records 97% of hits from just the i386 and amd64 architectures,
> yet packages are frequently delayed for weeks or even months while
> architectures enjoying 0.1% popcon scores struggle to catch up.
While I certainly understand that popcon is an indicator of popularity,
it is only that.  I don't imagine that someone running Debian on an s390
or on some other mainframe system will be inclined (since they are more
likely to work in a corporate setting) to install popcon and let the
system phone home.  I'm not trying to say that such users should be
considered more important than run of the mill home users, just that
such users are certainly underrepresented when compared to home users.

One of Debian's "core objectives" has been to support a wide variety of
architectures.  While the situation you describe (out of sync
migrations) is annoying, it is worse than what we have now.  If you feel
that a particular architecture is problematic, then you should
demonstrate how it failing to meet release objectives/goals/whatevers
and move to have its support dropped or made unofficial.  This is what
happened with m68k leading up to the release of Etch, right?

> Lenny is still only at linux kernel 2.6.22, which means little support
> for hardware up to a year old!  Sid is not suitable for most people,
> and most people lack the skills or inclination to install and maintain
> a mix of Lenny and Sid.
> Stable has linux kernel 2.6.18, which means little support for hardware
> up to two years old, and six months still to go before the next version.
> Ubuntu has a much better handle on the issue of producing timely
> releases, but Ubuntu is also quirky and very much "my way or the
> highway".  I would hate to be unable to continue using Debian.
> The next DPL should have a solid plan for reversing Debian's decline.
> If this means that some architectures fall by the wayside for lack of
> interest then so be it.  Better to lose several 0.1% architectures
> than for Debian as a whole to continue the slide towards irrelevance.
Except that Debian's "decline" (if it did exist in the first place) has
been stopped by the release of Etch, which was a huge jump forward.  If
Lenny is a big improvement, which it seems it will be, then things will
continue to improve.



Roberto C. Sánchez

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