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Ubuntu Developers Seem To Be Really Pursuing ZFS Root Partition Support On The Desktop

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  • gmturner
    replied
    Originally posted by aht0 View Post
    Mentality appears slightly different for me between users of two OS families with drastically different patience levels. You could describe it as one sort likes to 'hack away and see what comes out', other likes to 'build'. In BSD progress could be slow but usually shit ends up finished. Instead of being abandoned the moment something else strikes dev's fancy. Sometimes 25%, or 50% or effin' 95% done.
    ​​​​​​
    I think this is like saying, look at this pattern, people's hearts always seem to stop beating and they die, or, look at all these buildings falling apart, that's a pattern in buildings.

    Some software projects might theoretically be immortal; I will get back to you on that at the end of time. But this isn't capturing a salient social or institutional dynamic, it mixes up correlation and causation, and it ignores the life-cycle of open-source projects, which can benefit us either by being useful now, or later, or both, and dead projects may have been useful in the past.

    Here's my personal take on your list:
    • BTRfs: hard for me to say what went wrong here, but creeping-featurism may have played a role if I had to guess. Also, it does continue to slowly improve, maybe there is hope for btrfs yet? Maybe a lot of us may have some sort of "ptsd" from trying this in production too early. I know, for me, any tiny problem with btrfs just seems like the sky is falling and I just didn't want to feel that way anymore, so I stopped using it.
    • VK9: dxvk took away all its potential market-share, leaving a lone developer who felt like he was just in a room by himself writing code
    • KDE{3,4}: In both cases, the replacement projects provided migration paths and ultimately exceeded the value of their predecessors. There was some pain along the way, we must admit. They have even softened their stance on the crouton or whatever that stupid thing was on your desktop that they wouldn't let you get rid of.
    • Mir: No clue/knowledge, I simply can't speak about it intelligently.
    • Unity: Kind of the Windows 8 of the Linux desktop. A DE experience/paradigm that, arguably, most users simply didn't like or want, at least at first. This seems to more nearly conform to the pattern you're describing, aht0, than the others, as, like Windows 8, it was indeed abandoned before the dark cloud of negative initial reception was given time to dissipate.
    • Wayland: wayland is definitely not dead but it's a huge project with a very high critical mass in the sense that end-users aren't going to want to migrate until almost every bug and limitation is fully ironed out. Perhaps wayland should have provided more of an evolutionary migration path (although this is a hard problem in itself, given that the idea of wayland is kind-of to make a clean break from legacy encumberments). I see wayland advocates bad-mouthing every fork or client-project that attempts to fill the gaps in the reference implementation. Now that's a real anti-pattern in open-source projects, everyone should stop doing that.


    So is this a pattern or just a sampling of open-source software projects with no real pattern, aside from, you know, being software?

    Where is the 100% done open-source software project? And even if you've found it, is it reasonable to expect all open source software projects to reach 100% completion? How should they go about achieving it?

    TLDR: the failure of projects is a necessary part of how software can deliver value. Turning around and calling it a pattern tied to linux or even open-source seems unfair.

    Leave a comment:


  • Weasel
    replied
    Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
    So, why didn't ZoL actually go through with this project? Until they change the license so they can be included in the kernel then yes it is still their own problem.
    Maybe you like to work months for nothing. Most people don't because they value their time.

    Who would give them their months back if the kernel devs still rejected or ignored it? You?

    Leave a comment:


  • aht0
    replied
    Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
    I was under the impression that this is a common problem with human endeavors in general.
    But I'm trusting you blindly if you say that in BSD land people is completely different and they always finish what they started, they never abandon the project mid-way or develop it so fucking slowly that any potential user loses interest.
    Mentality appears slightly different for me between users of two OS families with drastically different patience levels. You could describe it as one sort likes to 'hack away and see what comes out', other likes to 'build'. In BSD progress could be slow but usually shit ends up finished. Instead of being abandoned the moment something else strikes dev's fancy. Sometimes 25%, or 50% or effin' 95% done.

    I'll give you few examples:
    • BTRfs as a project was started with huge fanfares, bunch of devs, multiple CORPORATION's participated. Everybody, their dog and cat cheered over 'future-ZFS-killer'. 12 years later it's still only 'mostly-done', where not even BTRfs own wiki does not dare proclaim it as a 'stable'. Even worse, some of the initial backers, like Red Hat have seemingly dropped idea of adopting it completely - it's indication RH considers BTRfs a 'lost cause'. VS. Matthew Dillon started Hammer early 2007, worked out design in 9 months and finished it up by 2011. Alone. Then announced plan for better-designed successor and got it done by last year. Despite the multi-year stall in-between he finished Hammer 2. Again. alone.
    • Recent Phoronix article "VK9 Project Stalls As Developer Leaves To Pursue Other Interests". Does it feel familiar behavior?
    • When KDE3 became finally digestable and actually pretty darn good it was suddenly axed and KDE4 started from ground up. Pattern was repeated with Plasma5. Each time between EOL'ing the old and 'reinventing the wheel', the 'then-new-wheel's initial versions were as a rule rather buggy crap. Each time it took like 7+ point-releases before new KDE would be stable enough for daily use.
    • Mir. "We do our own thing". Then axe it. Then use some of it. Waste bunch of years and developer hours while doing it.
    • Unity, pretty much repeat pattern. 6 years of wasted efforts. Both read to me as 'clueless flailing around'..
    • Wayland display protocol, regardless of reasons, it looks and feels like an flippin' endless road. X still reigns supreme, 10 years after Wayland's initial release, it's been employed in one distribution, Fedora. Ubuntu previous release used Wayland as well but reverted back to X for it's latest.
    Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
    That's why BSD-licensed software rules the world... right?
    Windows software does rule the world. From user's POV.

    Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
    It's written right there in the license, that they can take take take for free.
    [/QUOTE]
    It comes down to want. If you want, you can use loopholes in GPL and take it for free too. Many companies do it.

    Let's say your changes are not proprietary/business secret, isn't it cheaper long-term to upstream? There's your incentive right there: avoid extra work of endless patching as new releases of one or other BSD os appear. All the major corporations contributing back to BSD do it for that exact reason, it's economically more feasible in long-term.

    Leave a comment:


  • rleigh
    replied
    Originally posted by jpg44 View Post
    Its kind of odd people seem to be so interested in ZFS when Linux has its own GPL filesystem called btrfs which works very well. Why doesnt Canonical start acting like they are not insane and help improve btrfs? You probably cant legally or morally do ZFS in a distro because of the licensing. I am not fond of BSD licenses because companies should give back their improvements rather than take take take.
    Well, a big part of the problem is that Btrfs doesn't work very well. People like me are using ZFS because it actually works as intended. The performance, service interruptions and data integrity problems of Btrfs were unacceptable. And I say this as someone who used Btrfs intensively from the start for many years. ZFS is what Btrfs should have been had they done the design and implementation correctly from the start.

    As for helping to improve Btrfs, that's absolutely an option, if you want to throw a lot of good money after bad. If the underlying design and implementation have multiple flaws, this may be an impractical approach. However, funding the integration work to make ZFS work seamlessly with the installer and the rest of the base system is a tiny fraction of that. Neither of us are likely in a position to make these decisions, but if you were a Linux distributor, the cost/benefit might well dictate the viability of supporting one over the other, and ZFS is in a much better place than Btrfs.

    Your comment about not being fond of BSD licences makes no sense. ZFS is CDDL licensed, not BSD licensed. It's a weak copyleft with much in common with the GPL which requires you to distribute your changes pretty much the same as the GPL does. If you like the GPL, it's hard to fault the CDDL for requiring the same thing!

    Leave a comment:


  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by aht0 View Post
    You are wondering over one fundamental problem with Linux, which could be described as "start with a hurrah' , lose interest half-way through without it ever getting completely finished, start something similar anew, repeat".
    I was under the impression that this is a common problem with human endeavors in general.

    But I'm trusting you blindly if you say that in BSD land people is completely different and they always finish what they started, they never abandon the project mid-way or develop it so fucking slowly that any potential user loses interest.

    That's why BSD-licensed software rules the world... right?

    'take, take, take' is largely your imagination.
    It's written right there in the license, that they can take take take for free.

    Leave a comment:


  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by k1e0x View Post
    I like HAMMER2, I've no problem with that but you'll need to get it by religous Linux zealots like yourself because it's got the wrong license for you. "GPL onry ppl"
    Don't post bullshit. The main reason none cares about porting HAMMER2 is that it is a cluster filesystem, and Linux has like 4 decent cluster filesystems already.

    If Btrfs wasn't still in development none would give a shit about ZFS either.

    Leave a comment:


  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by Chugworth View Post
    That's true, but with the way the patent system works, the same could be said for any technology. Basically anyone that comes to market with a big money-making product is exposing themselves to lawsuits from patent trolls.
    In this case there is a known license clash though, so the balance is tipped in the troll favor.

    Canonical's lawyers have apparently looked at the issues and feel they could make a strong enough case if it were to ever go to court.
    I don't trust Canonical's lawyers decision blindly.

    Leave a comment:


  • starshipeleven
    replied
    Originally posted by mskarbek View Post
    Nothing, it's just a matter of a meta-package that combines zfs modules with specific kernel. That is exactly what I am doing for my personal use. Works perfectly well on Fedora.
    I know. I'm complaining about the lack of concerted efforts even in distros that are supposed to support it semi-officially like Arch and derivatives.

    Leave a comment:


  • aht0
    replied
    Originally posted by jpg44 View Post
    Its kind of odd people seem to be so interested in ZFS when Linux has its own GPL filesystem called btrfs which works very well. Why doesnt Canonical start acting like they are not insane and help improve btrfs? You probably cant legally or morally do ZFS in a distro because of the licensing. I am not fond of BSD licenses because companies should give back their improvements rather than take take take.
    You are wondering over one fundamental problem with Linux, which could be described as "start with a hurrah' , lose interest half-way through without it ever getting completely finished, start something similar anew, repeat".

    'take, take, take' is largely your imagination.

    Leave a comment:


  • k1e0x
    replied
    Originally posted by DoMiNeLa10 View Post

    ZFS can cure cancer for all I care, the reason why it doesn't belong in Linux is the license, and that by itself is a good enough reason. I would support the idea of adding an intentional panic when the module is loaded in the mainline kernel.
    Originally posted by DoMiNeLa10 View Post

    What about supporting development of state of art file systems, such as HAMMER2? ZFS is already out there, but I haven't seen people calling to start work on a port to Linux.
    I like HAMMER2, I've no problem with that but you'll need to get it by religous Linux zealots like yourself because it's got the wrong license for you. "GPL onry ppl"

    I happen to *like* CDDL/MPL licenses. Have you read it? File based, weak copyleft, flexible and still requires changes to be public. It's the good parts of the GPL and not the bad.

    Leave a comment:

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