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Thread: openSUSE Has A Problem, Is Seeking New Direction

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanL View Post
    Good for them. I'm glad someone is seeing the rolling-release light. Canonical, take note.
    hope so.

    or at least once a year.

    mandriva moved to yearly, now opensuse will do something similar.

    the 6 month thing doesnt work anymore.

    it even helps lower version fragmentation.

    even bad upgrades will be probably once a year instead of twice.

  2. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by devius View Post
    It doesn't work that way because sometimes newer versions of applications require newer versions of libraries, so you either update everything or nothing. That's why distros are either rolling release or stable release. Well, theoretically it should be safe to keep an old kernel around, but everything else will spell trouble eventually.

    PS: I also thought that the rolling release model was a good idea, and it was for some months (Arch) but then things started breaking and the breakage just kept growing and growing... granted I was using KDE which may explain all the problems.
    distros dont necesary need to be an ALL or NOTHING thing.

    OSs like Windows, mac and some distros like PC-BSD. Do provide an alternative to the all or nothing approach from the server model that is flawed on the desktop.

    A lot of the Libraries (not all) come bundled with the applications.

    I can have different versions of an App simultaneously, not forced to just one old or the latest.

    And with huge Giga/Terabyte hard drives being the default, do we really care to save a couple megs on a few libraries ?

    I mean windows has been doing it this way forever, even when HDs were very small and rarely anyone has complained about that.
    Last edited by madjr; 06-14-2012 at 03:00 PM.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by madjr View Post
    And with huge Giga/Terabyte hard drives being the default, do we really care to save a couple megs on a few libraries ?
    It's more about security than anything. It's easy to patch one libary with security fixes but if you have ten different versions of the same libary then it's completely different story. You would have to patch and recompile each and everyone of them each and every time. That might be possible (altoug it is not) for big companies like Microsoft but not so much for desktop Linux. Also many projects do not provide security fixes for old releases. In all it takes a lot of effort for minimal gain if it can even be called that. There are bundle systems on top of Linux (used by Chakra for example) where you can run multiple versions of the same app. I have never had any use for one though.

  4. #24
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    People seem to think a rolling release == bleeding edge. This doesn't have to be true.

    IF openSUSE went with to a rolling release I seriously doubt that would mean that factory(equivalent to running 12.10 while in alpha/beta for ubuntu people) would become their standard distribution. If a new version of a library or package is released upstream that doesn't mean they will rush to get out to users immediately at the cost of breaking everything. In some cases, bleeding edge packages are okay for applications like Firefox or Chromium. I doubt they will adopt a new X11 release if it breaks current proprietary blobs for instance. My impression is that they will go to a rolling release to allow them to release packages and major updates at their own pace rather than setting hard dates they need to meet. For major system changes this type of rolling release will make things easier on developers. Meanwhile, more trivial changes like desktop applications can be updated more quickly without too much added effort.

    Its mostly a win for users and developers alike.

  5. #25
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    Tumbleweed is way to go...... Also, they could just pack a snapshot of tubleweed as a release
    What differs?

  6. #26
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    Default Mixed messages

    Looking over his suggestions here, the gist of it is "I want us to be more like Gentoo". Suffice to say, I am pleased.

    But I thought he said "new and interesting"?

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by uid313 View Post
    Well, they could do a semi-rolling release where application software gets updated, but libraries and system components does not.
    Quote Originally Posted by kraftman View Post
    Then just update some important applications. Ubuntu already provides upgrades to Firefox.
    I'm not an expert and this is just speculation.

    Both of these could solve a lot of the problems with rolling releases, but the big issue that they won't solve are libraries that have API/ABI changes, but can't install side-by-side. For example, libPNG and OpenSSL sometimes change their API/ABI, but the package manager might not let you install both versions side-by-side.

    As an example that really happened to me on my Gentoo box, I wanted to install Firefox 4 as soon as it hit the portage tree and it depended on the new Xulrunner. However, Eclipse depended on the old Xulrunner, and the two versions couldn't be installed side-by-side. It's easy for me to handle that because Portage allowed me to turn off the USE flag in Eclipse that depended on Xulrunner.

    Other distributions/package managers can't manipulate dependencies as easily as that. If Eclipse in other distributions depend on Xulrunner, the user wanted to install Firefox 4, and the two Xulrunner packages can't be installed side-by-side, the user is shit-out-of-luck until that dependency issue is solved. This is just an example (I'm pretty sure Eclipse in most distributions don't depend on Xulrunner), but it's universally true for any package.

    This isn't so much a shared library issue as it is a package manager and quality-assurance issue. The shared library issues can be easily fixed. The limitations in the package manager and repository aren't so easy.

    Assuming that the package manager can be flexible enough to upgrade/downgrade as the user wishes, how do you handle quality assurance? Surely newly released packages can't be fully tested in a fixed environment, there's going to be SOME problems.

    I think the best course is to do pretty much what Gentoo does. Mark packages as follows:

    Bleeding edge -> Be warned that this can possibly break your system. The faint of heart are not welcome here.
    Unstable -> It's been tested, but it might still have a couple problems or simply hasn't been in the repository long enough to be considered stable. Tread lightly.
    Stable -> Knock yourself out.

    Never install non-Stable software unless the user explicitly tells the package manager to.
    Last edited by Vax456; 06-14-2012 at 07:09 PM.

  8. #28
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    May 2008
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    Default Opensuse-Tumbleweed

    I've been using opensuse tumbleweed for over a year now with little problems. For awhile on one computer with a newer AMD video card the desktop kernel loaded a corrupt desktop, but booting into the default kernel was fine. Eventually this was fixed in a new kernel.

    Sabayon uses a rolling release and has the distinction of also being the only one including AMD's and Nvidia"s binary blobs in their updates. Sooner or later however, an update will completely crash the system. I've had no such problem with opensuse, but I'm using open source drivers only. If they went to a rolling release model it seems that zypper and yast could be programmed to update systems with binary and open source drivers differently or not easily allow certain repositories to be enabled for systems with the blobs.

  9. #29
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    Default Repositories

    Quote Originally Posted by daver View Post
    I disagree. Tumbleweed is an ugly, unholy mess. Have you seriously tried it? I switched openSUSE 12.1 to use the Tumbleweed repository and it was a major PITA to begin with. Then, after sucessfully switching to Tumbleweed there simply weren't enough updates to legitimate the step at all. I don't know , could be that this is perfectly normal to you openSusers. But for everybody else this is just not acceptable when you can haz Debian.
    Just curious, but how many repositories did you have enabled? I've never had any problems in over a year with just the 3 Tumbleweed repos enabled.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by LenS View Post
    I've been using opensuse tumbleweed for over a year now with little problems. For awhile on one computer with a newer AMD video card the desktop kernel loaded a corrupt desktop, but booting into the default kernel was fine. Eventually this was fixed in a new kernel.

    Sabayon uses a rolling release and has the distinction of also being the only one including AMD's and Nvidia"s binary blobs in their updates. Sooner or later however, an update will completely crash the system. I've had no such problem with opensuse, but I'm using open source drivers only. If they went to a rolling release model it seems that zypper and yast could be programmed to update systems with binary and open source drivers differently or not easily allow certain repositories to be enabled for systems with the blobs.
    I tried my first serious switch from Windows to Linux with Sabayon, and I ran into two updates in six months that left me unable to start the desktop (and lots of instability even when I could). I was about to give up on Linux and upgrade Windows instead when I decided to try one last time with a just-released OpenSUSE. OpenSUSE and its stability and polish are what got me to leave Windows behind.

    Going to a rolling release is not a realistic option; Tumbleweed is designed to be based off of something, not to roll forever. If the problem OpenSUSE has is integrating, a rolling release will just make things worse, not better. Disallowing certain repositories or creating parallel update paths also sounds like a recipe to make the distro more complicated to use.

    OpenSUSE is already running an 8 month release cycle and it has achieved great polish and stability from it... except for the last 12.1 release, which simply wasn't in a releasable state and needed at least 6 more weeks of bug-fixing. Now it sounds like 12.2 is in even worse shape, but at least the team is admitting it and looking for answers. The simplest answer may be switching to a yearly release cycle and then work on internal development and testing processes. Slamming code out as soon as its released (what Sabayon essentially does) destroys the ability to test or polish OpenSUSE and simply doesn't fit with the mission statement of OpenSUSE, which is to favor stability over features.

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