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Re: problems with the concept of unstable -> testing

On Wednesday 17 December 2008 10:55, Tzafrir Cohen <tzafrir@cohens.org.il> 
> > The Fedora vs RHEL model that Red Hat uses has some benefits.
> The Fedora and RHEL is:
> Fedora: a somewhat equivalent of Debian Testing. The rules for updating
> a package even after a version is released are way more laxed than
> Debian Stable.

In terms of the requirements for version updates, Debian/Testing and Fedora 
are quite similar.  Debian/Testing is often suggested for home (not 
corporate) desktop use and Fedora is the home desktop system from Red Hat.

> RHEL: Much less software. You can't expect to maintain the whole
> archive of Debian Stable for 5 or 7 years without it. There are many
> packages I miss in the CentOS archive.


There are a number of possibilities for alleviating this.  One suggestion that 
has been made is to split Debian into different sections with different 
release requirements.  One possible way of doing this is to have one section 
for core and server software which would also be the base for a Fedora-like 
distribution and the entire package list for a CentOS/RHEL like distribution.

One possibility if we were to have a Debian equivalent to CentOS/RHEL would be 
to have apt sources repositories from newer distributions.  Having a system 
with most packages coming from a stable binary package set and a couple of 
missing packages compiled from a source base such as Debian/Testing should 
give a good result.

If I could find a good set of package sources that would build on CentOS then 
my CentOS sys-admin work would be a lot easier.

> Also note that none of those distribution has a distinction between
> "server" and "desktop" in the release cycle management. Ubuntu has a
> "server" variant, but it is merely a way to package different packages
> and defaults into the installation CD. RHEL has a distinction between
> "server" and "desktop", but I figure that this is because supporting a
> server instance costs more (or that people are willing to pay more for
> it).

The various versions of RHEL have different price-points and different package 
sets.  Pay more money and more server packages are supported.

The recommended use of Fedora is desktops not servers.  While desktop 
environments are supported in RHEL, this tends to be mostly centrally managed 
corporate desktops not individual one-off systems - so it's a similar 
situation to servers in terms of a resource being centrally managed by the IT 
group.  You can consider the release cycle difference between Fedora and RHEL 
to be the difference between desktop and server systems.

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