Debian Tech Committee Falling Further Into Disarray
Written by Michael Larabel in Debian on 9 February 2014 at 06:02 PM EST. 95 Comments
While it was clear that systemd overtook Upstart in this weekend's Debian init system voting by the Debian technical committee, some fits are still being had over the results. Some committee members are now calling for resignations.

The process of determining Debian's default init system moving forward to replace SysVinit has largely been between systemd and Upstart but keeping SysVinit and checking out OpenRC were also evaluated. This process has been dragging on for months by the Debian technical committee. While it looked like they finally settled for systemd, some members are still in a pissing match.

Ian Jackson, a current Citrix employee, former Canonical employee, and former Debian Project Leader, and member of the Debian Technical Committee, has called for deposing the chairman of the committee, Bdale Garbee. Ian sent out an email on Sunday saying that there can't be a vote on a new chairman until the current post is vacant, so he wants the resignation of Bdale so they can move ahead with a new chairman. Ian has been unsatisfied with the voting results and has been calling for a different ballot.

Ian has been the only one to vote so far and he obviously voted in favor of trying to force the resignation over "lost confidence in chairman."

Following that, Friedrich Gunter has turned around and asked the technical committee to remove Ian Jackson from the group. Friedrich wrote, "He has consistently derailed debates, engaged in dishonest tactical voting methods, and tarnished the good reputation of the TC. He is a nuisance to the Debian project and a dishonest man to entrust with such responsibility."

Ian Jackson wrote another mailing list post today and said, "Following my most recent emails, three separate well-meaning people have suggested that perhaps I should step away from the computer for a bit. One correspondent said it looked like I had "gone postal". It is true that I am absolutely furious. Livid. I can't describe in words how angry I am. I feel like my trust, and my scrupulous attention to the proper processes, have been entirely betrayed."

Ian is apparently taking a leave from the committee matters for a few days. The committee meanwhile will not be voting on new matters until his return.

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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via

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