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Re: Reason to not upgrade to 5.0 - was Re: Problem with Debian 4.0 security

On Sat, 1 Aug 2009, Brian Marshall wrote:

On Sun, Aug 02, 2009 at 10:00:44AM +0800, Bret Busby wrote:
The problem with downloading the applications from seamonkey, is
that they are .tar.gz files, rather than .deb packages, and my
experience with using .tar.gz files for installing software, rather
than .deb packages, is that the .tar.gz files are messy to install,
and the effects horrendous.

Actually, the tarballs from Mozilla aren't source, so they don't
require installation. You can run the firefox/seamonkey/whatever binary
from the directory you extracted it to.

The problem with that, is that, when updating the version, as I had done in the past, I always had to create and go down to, a new, lower directory level, and I ended up with something like seven directory levels for the path of the installed application, before I simply gave up updating the application.

Now, I just avoid .tar.gz files.

Using package management, with the package being appropriate for the distribution (not like the crappy use of an RPM package for installation on a Debian system), is far simpler and more reliable, and, provides far greater incentive, to keep the installed packages up to date.

However, ...

I am currently logged in to the Debian 5.0 installation on my laptop, telnetted to my desktop computer, to access my email application, and I have checked the version of iceape that is installed on my Debian 5.0 installation on my laptop, and, Synatic shows that it is 1.0.13 for etch (unfortunately, Synaptic does not allow copying and pasting of information displayed in Synaptic).

So, maybe, if java is not really needed to run Debian 5.0, I can install Debian 5.0 , and then download and install iceape for etch, on Debian 5.0, or upgrade from Debian 4.0 to 5.0, without losing iceape.

I also found that, from what I understand, Debian 5.0 requires java,
in much the same way as (and with far greater system vulnerability
MS Windows has been requiring Internet Explorer.

This is certainly not true. Java is in the non-free repository, which
would make it impossible to include in the default distribution. Debian
doesn't really require anything, anyway - you don't even need X.

The source of information that led me to believe that Debian requires java, is, on the web page at http://www.debian.org/releases/stable/i386/release-notes/ch-whats-new.en.html , where it states
"2.7. Java now in Debian
The OpenJDK Java Runtime Environment openjdk-6-jre and Development Kit openjdk-6-jdk, needed for executing Java GUI and Webstart programs or building such programs, are now in Debian. The packages are built using the IcedTea build support and patches from the IcedTea project."

Maybe I misconstrued what is said, by interpreting that as indicating that Debian 5.0 reqiuires java, to function with a GUI.

Can Debian 5.0 be installed, and fully functional, then, without java being installed?

superuser privilege is limited, and, it uses an unwieldy means of
identifying partitions, making modifying the fstab and mounting
partitions, somewhat traumatic, instead of simply using the hda<x>
or /dev identifier, which would make system administration, much
more efficient.

That's probably UUIDs. Debian does this as well. I'm not well versed in
the advantages and disadvantages of UUIDs, but I do know that they never
change, unlike files in /dev.

I think it is the UUID's. Long character identifiers for partitions, that require a specific process to find what is the UUID for a partition, then it has to be entered, in a different syntax, to have logical drives automatically mounted, on bootup.

Makes sysadmin somewhat more complicated than it need be, as, from memory, I have previously done such things, by simply using /dev/hd<a|c><x> as the logical drive identifier, and, the mountpoint name (eg /mount/data1).

I have not had to use UUID's in the procedure, in Debian.

Bret Busby
West Australia

"So once you do know what the question actually is,
 you'll know what the answer means."
- Deep Thought,
  Chapter 28 of Book 1 of
  "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:
  A Trilogy In Four Parts",
  written by Douglas Adams,
  published by Pan Books, 1992


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