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Re: Bits from the Release Team - Kicking off Wheezy

Lucas Nussbaum <lucas@lucas-nussbaum.net> writes:
> On 02/05/11 at 16:19 -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:

>> I'm very dubious.  To take one example, if Debian stopped making stable
>> releases, it would no longer be usable at work, which would mean that
>> my ability to work in Debian would substantially decrease and quite
>> possibly go away completely.

> Except for the sake of argumentation, I don't think that anybody
> considers seriously that Debian would stop making stable releases.  The
> question is whether we want to provide a rolling release in addition to
> our stable releases.

Yeah, sorry, I knew that's what you meant and should have said so

I'm totally fine with a rolling release if we can figure out how to add it
to the project without hurting stable.  I'm only speaking up to make clear
that yes, there really are people who are passionate about (and
passionately happy about) stable.  It sometimes feels in some of the
rolling testing discussions like DDs can start feeling like stable isn't a
useful product, since a lot of the input is from people for whom stable
isn't ideal (since people with problems talk more than people without
problems).  But it definitely is.

>> I realize that we're often not on the mailing lists jumping up and down
>> and advocating for our issues, in part because Debian works great for
>> us and not much needs to be changed, but please remember that there are
>> a *lot* of us using Debian on servers in large-scale production
>> environments.  And stable is our world.  It's EXTREMELY IMPORTANT.  It
>> is, in many cases, the reason why we were able to sell Debian in the
>> first place; if it weren't for Debian's exceptionally good stable
>> releases, we would probably all be running Red Hat.

> I assume that when you write 'us' or 'we' here, you mean 'Debian users
> in large-scale production environments'.

Yes, indeed.

> Again, I'm not diminishing the importance of stable releases. But I've
> always found it strange that, as a volunteer project, we are creating a
> product that is mainly used in professional environments.

I guess I don't find that to be any sort of conflict.  Many of us aren't
only volunteering as individual contributors to create things that we want
to run on our desktops.  We're also volunteering as system administrators,
developers, or similar sorts of IT roles to create things that we want to
run at work.  And I think in many cases (such as mine), our employers are
actually volunteering substantial amounts of our paid time to work on
Debian as well.

It's still a volunteer project.  One of the volunteers happens to be
Stanford University, donating staff time.  :)

> It is clear from the discussion that there would be consequences. Some
> would be negative, some positive. I think that we have now a pretty good
> understanding of the possibilities and their consequences. The remaining
> problem is to count DDs heads in the two camps:
> - "Let's focus on stable releases. A rolling release should not be
>    provided officially by Debian."
> - "Let's see what we can do about rolling, provided we find a way to do it
>    without diminishing the quality of our stable releases."

Well, I don't think anyone really objects to the second category and we'd
all consider ourselves to be in that category if it works.  Most of the
discussion, from where I sit, is over whether or not it's possible to do
that.  If we can have both, that's clearly the best possible outcome.

Russ Allbery (rra@debian.org)               <http://www.eyrie.org/~eagle/>

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