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Re: Fedora lifetime and stability



Serguei Miridonov wrote:
On Thursday 08 November 2007, John Summerfield wrote:
Mikkel L. Ellertson wrote:
Serguei Miridonov wrote:
However, before starting a discussion about this I would
like to ask, if this topic was discussed earlier.
To death.

I'm sure it was

but can somebody point me any deep analysis which really
proves that current one year lifetime and half-year
release period is the best for Fedora?
Here is a section of a post on Fedora Philosophy:

The Fedora project does not pretend to be *production
server* centric. It does not even pretend to be
*production server* friendly. The personality of the Fedora project is fast paced, (b)leading edge, leaving the
past behind quickly. It is a great proving ground or test
bed for current technologies. It is fun. It will never
have the stability or extended support that a server class
distribution does.
Translated, "rolling beta." In return for your access to the
latest technology, you can expect cuts and bruises.

Then don't name "rolling beta" as stable because it is missleading.

If you want a longer life, go look at other solutions.

Look, I'm running Linux since 1994 starting with Slackware then switched to Red Hat and Fedora. I have Linux on both home computer and in my office. I always liked the fact that with every new release the system became more and more stable and usefull. That was before F7. Upgrading from FC5 to F7 wasn't disaster, of course, but this was just because of my knowledge of the system - using Linux more than 12 years makes difference. USB drives did not mount, no problem, we'll do it manually. Kernel did not park heads before switching power of laptop off, well, modern drives use their kinetic energy to remove heads. I could imagine the perception of inexperienced user who for some reason decides to try Fedora as his first (and last?) Linux distribution.

In July-August most F7 problems were resolved (for my system, at least). The normal life has just started, but now F7 has only 6-7 months to live? This is what makes me just rise my hand and ask.

My remarks are not to offense developers and maintainers. I myself was a maintainer of a kernel driver and I know what it cost to keep things alive. I started this thread having just one thought in mind - improving Fedora, at least, to return the stability that Red Hat and Fedora had in the past. This is why I suggest to have one release an year, allow more time for testing before the release and extend the lifetime at least for two years.

If someone wants new and cool bleading edge software, there is always a testing version of Fedora, so long term lifetime isn't a problem. Even some newest packages can be backported to current test updates.

Actually, I'm not going to continue this discussion. I wanted just to share my thoughts. I know that I'm not alone. For example, here http://www.oreillynet.com/linux/blog/2007/03/where_fedora_went_wrong.html is also said enough, on both sides. And my opinion is that Fedora will only win if testing period and release lifetime will be at least twice longer.

Having just seen such a problem in FC8, I have to agree to some extent. Solving the problems by removing and reinstalling packages is my usual solution, although I have had to manually run some RPMs, because the rpm package ignores the force option and insists it knows better than the user. I do see that as a failing of the package, at some point there needs to be a way to move forward.

But while I might like to see longer support (as in security fixes, at least) for each release, I fail to see how Fedora can "win" by doing so. It's hard to see what having more people not paying for the product does as a benefit, while the only reason I update most of my systems is security, and if I could get security releases for two years, I would be testing less new stuff.

There was some mumbling about value to stockholders in this thread, I'm a stockholder and I think that FC is a reasonably cost effective testing program for new stuff. That justifies its existance, and I think we have to be content with that.

Note: I don't see Fedora and Ubuntu competing for the same users, so there's not much "win" there, if I didn't run Fedora I'd probably go to CentOS for most things, certainly for servers.

--
Bill Davidsen <davidsen tmr com>
  "We have more to fear from the bungling of the incompetent than from
the machinations of the wicked."  - from Slashdot


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