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Re: Hesitating to take the plunge in Debian

On 11/1/2000 Renaud Dreyer wrote:

Can't remember the last tiem I even used my floppy drive on my Mac...
Probably about 30 months ago when I bought it and transfered some old
stuff from my Powerbook...

well when I say boot floppies for the powerpc, I am not entirely literal, you need not boot from a floppy (assuming that even works) but you do need to boot a linux kernel SOMEHOW and have it load a compressed ramdisk for a root filesystem, this ramdisk is root1440.bin, which on intel we dd to a floppy and stuff it in the floppy drive when the kernel asks for it. on macs you have yaboot or bootx hand the ramdisk to the kernel. still its nice to have a bootable floppy if you want to blow away that `other' OS and fully dedicate the disk to GNU/Linux.

That's exactly what I want. I spent hours installing and deinstalling
RPM's on my Linuxppc R5 box, without ever being sure of
what I really needed. I hate having stuff I don't need wasting my
hard drive space...

if your careful with dselect (play with it a fewtimes and abort if you mess it up the first time, control C should exit without changing any selections) you should be able to do that very well.

Such as the broken CD-ROM link and other little annoyances that add up.

Yup ;-) that happens to be one of my favorite nits because its so dumb, but other things too, like ever since y2k it reads my hwclock as the localtime (broken macos) and decides it should reset the clock to sometime in 1931... (yes i have checked the localtime links and such) but there is endless problems I could report, I have totally given up on fixing that pile of mess and will blow it away as soon as I have 2 things: a 2.2.14 kernel that boots with yaboot, and 2) boot floppies that don't abandon ship the moment they notice my machine is a blue g3.

 > Debian is probably missing all the rediculous bugs linuxppc has :)

Too bad...

isn't it though ;-)

 > dunno about that one there was some recent discussion about Xpmac...

I assume I can just download it and then link it to my X server, like
in Linuxppc.

pretty much, except debian handles the server differently, instead you edit /etc/X11/Xserver to choose the real server. no symlinks. and i think Xpmac requires a kernel option or hack...

ah, something I forggot to ask... How well does the Debian package system
work with tar balls? In my old MkLinux system it soon became an
incredible mess, with RPM's and tar ball files fighting it out. Is there
some kind of safeguard to, for example, prevent a make install from
deleting files from a Debian package, and vice-versa?

sounds like Mklinux is broken (what a surprise) Debian packaged software by policy MUST be installed in the /usr/* hierarchy /usr/bin /usr/share/man and so on, anything you install yourself, unless the makefiles are horridly broken will default to installing under /usr/local/* such as /usr/local/bin /usr/local/man and so on, debian packages are forbidden to touch /usr/local (its been mounted readonly for monthes on my potato box and i have never had a package error due to it trying to muck with it.)

for proof that this works, I disliked how debian compiled rxvt, I want the bloody NeXT like scrollbar not that ugly motif thing, so rather then muck around making my own package that will inevitably just interfere with the next debian official version I just got the sources configured compiled and installed (in /usr/local as any non braindamaged Makefile will do by default) and boom the next time i ran rxvt i got mine because the default PATH puts /usr/local/bin before /usr/bin anyone who wants to use the official debian rxvt can still do so, and my installation did not damage or modify in ANY WAY the debian packaged version. perfectly clean. no interference.

On linuxppc  it's apparently horribly broken so I never bothered.

[Linuxconf fans plug your ears, and skip this next line]

linuxconf is broken in general no matter where you look, its a massive bloated monstrocity that simply does not work right, it screws up stuff more then it fixes, and is far to `helpful' for its own good... "oh i see you fixed that insecure permissions, let me change that back without asking if its ok"

[linuxconf fans can start listening again]

That sounds wonderful. Keeping a system up to date with Red Hat is quite
a challenge. I was getting sick of chasing RPM's all over the place.

its amazing, I was not convinced this kind of upgradability would ever work but it does for the most part. (i had problem going from slink to octoberish potato on a few packages but i was brand new to debain, and potato was still not totally baked yet)

I just upgraded the compiler on linuxppc to see if i could get a kernel to compile and actually work and i tell you I don't know how i ever stood using that rpm crap(*), downloading .rpms manually and fetching all the dependencies yourself, figuring out what package libfoobar.so.5.0.2 belongs to is just so primitive after using apt-get and dpkg.

(*) I know this is harsh but what can i say, unless you hate package management in general, once you use apt/dpkg there is just no comparison. I hope the LSB gets off on this `lets make RPM standard' rubbish...

Ethan who is iching to blow away this linuxppc mess.

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