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Red Hat Software Businesses Software Linux

Fedora Holds Summit To Map Its Future 92

Posted by kdawson
from the hats-in-the-air dept.
lisah writes "Last month members of the Fedora community met for a three-day summit (wiki here) designed to chart a course for future version releases as well as to plan other Fedora projects. Team members say they want to leverage the enthusiasm of a community that has demonstrated a willingness to develop Fedora Extras (add-on features to the Core package) and support Fedora Legacy (past releases). Red Hat's community development manager, Greg DeKoenigsberg, said, 'Community contributors have proven conclusively over the past 18 months that they can build packages every bit as well as Red Hat engineers — better, in some cases.' In addition to creating several proposals that will be introduced the the community for input and feedback, the summit also gave rise to the newly-created position of Fedora Infrastructure Leader." Linux.com and Slashdot are both owned by OSTG.
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Fedora Holds Summit To Map Its Future

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  • by Vexler (127353) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @06:05PM (#17305940) Journal
    Apparently one of the results of this summit is the dropping of all support for past versions of Fedora Core prior to FC4, as a note on fedoralegacy.org said this past week.

    I agree that we can't support all the versions in perpetuity, but I thought it would have been more helpful if they had included some reason other than "sorry, we just can't do it anymore". Did it not fit into the big picture of their support? What about future security fixes? etc. etc. As it was, it was very abrupt.
  • by qortra (591818) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @06:06PM (#17305950)
    This applies to the majority of my Linux-using friends as well. Perhaps this is because people already know the name of Red Hat

    I think this was definitely the norm about 3 years ago when it was created. Certainly, before that, Red Hat had incredible name recognition, and as it result, most new Linux users tended to get Red Hat (sometimes even get retail copies at the time).

    However, I would claim that Ubuntu has now usurped Red Hat's (and Fedora's) position as the most recognized distribution among Linux newbies. Certainly Distro Watch [distrowatch.com] agrees with me. Not that DW is conclusive evidence, but it tends to be a good indicator.

    I do agree with you though; Fedora is important, even if it is not quite as popular as Ubuntu among newbies.
  • by Kelson (129150) * on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @06:18PM (#17306084) Homepage Journal
    I agree that we can't support all the versions in perpetuity, but I thought it would have been more helpful if they had included some reason other than "sorry, we just can't do it anymore". Did it not fit into the big picture of their support? What about future security fixes? etc. etc. As it was, it was very abrupt.

    It's been hashed out on the mailing list [redhat.com]. The upshot is this: Fedora Legacy depended heavily on volunteers. While there has been demand for them to release updates, there have never been enough volunteers to keep it going. This has been true almost since the beginning, but it finally got to the point where the people running the project looked at it, said "we really can't keep up, can we?" and decided to fold the resources available into the main Fedora Project.

    As I understand it, the current plan is to drop Fedora Legacy entirely, but extend official support for the immediate previous release (which right now would be Fedora Core 5) for several months longer than the old EOL policy.

  • by Kelson (129150) * on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @06:20PM (#17306116) Homepage Journal
    Just to clarify, "the people running the project" in this case means "the people running the Fedora Legacy project."

    Random Rule of Slashdot #843: The one time you don't use Preview will be the one time you should have.
  • by Nighttime (231023) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @06:23PM (#17306142) Homepage Journal
    From Internet News [internetnews.com]

    Typically a Fedora Core release comes out every six or seven months. Red Hat's flagship offering, Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), by contrast, comes out every 18 to 24 months. Under the new lifecycle plan a Fedora Core release would have 13 months of support.

    "Anything beyond this really seems to be corner cases that would really be better served by something like CentOS for free, RHEL for rock solid support, or Oracle for crackmonkies," Keating wrote. "What does this mean for the "Legacy" project? We feel that the resources currently and in the past that have contributed to the Legacy project could be better used within the Fedora project space."

  • by smoker2 (750216) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @06:53PM (#17306512) Homepage Journal
    Fedora is all about developers because it is all about development

    It has never set out to be a user oriented system. It only exists to push the envelope. If you choose to use it in any of its incarnations, you have to accept that. Otherwise, install RHEL or Ubuntu.

    And no, that wasn't meant as a flame, it's the truth. Is Ubuntu based on Debian unstable, is RHEL based on FC6 ?
  • by uglyduckling (103926) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @07:37PM (#17307096) Homepage
    see, the way i see it, if you have time to migrate to another distro, you have time to migrate to the newer release of the same distro, but with less pain
    The LTS bit of Ubuntu LTS means 'long term support' (sorry if you knew this). Presumably the parent's point is that he can switch to Ubuntu once and have 5 years guaranteed support for the server version, wheras upgrading to the newer Fedora/RH offering gives no certainty as to how long support will last. It's not always non-trivial to upgrade to a newer release, so if he/she is going to do it then they should do it once and stick with the distro for a few years.
  • by gdek (202709) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @07:44PM (#17307186)
    Yep. Which is why it's pretty much Number One on the hitlist for the new Fedora Infrastructure chief.
  • by joe 155 (937621) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @08:07PM (#17307394) Journal
    "You won't be missed you corporate-enabling proprietary garbage"

    I think you fundamentally missed the point of fedora there. Fedora is 100% free, so much so that it doesn't ship with mp3 or DVD support. It's a small hastle but it's the price of freedom... so not really proprietary
  • by mandelbr0t (1015855) on Tuesday December 19, 2006 @10:13PM (#17308394) Journal

    I've installed many bad RPMs (admittedly, mostly prior to RPM v4, but I jumped ship to Debian-based distros around that time) that have destroyed the entire configuration to the point where no dependencies resolve correctly any more. All of the responses I've heard about this sort of behaviour are something to the effect of "use the source RPM then", or whatever. The point being, things need to be painless. Sure, I could debug the RPM database (occasionally I had success in sorting out what went wrong), but it's a nightmare to try and use RPM to install proprietary software. You almost always have to force the installation using --no-deps --force, because RPM binaries are usually targeted at a specific distro/version. I remember mysql had big problems too, and Red Hat wouldn't upgrade from 3.23 for an unreasonably long time. Oracle had problems, again with dependencies. The list goes on and on. I also started using Red Hat around version 4. I've got plenty of bad experience with them, believe me. I've also got some measure of experience with every one of the alternative distros I mentioned, and have good and bad things to say about all of them.

    Debian takes a somewhat draconic approach to package management, simply refusing any further package installation until you resolve the dependencies. I've never seen distro-specific .debs, just one. There weren't many of them until Ubuntu got big, but you can find anything (including proprietary, non-GPL software) packaged in Multiverse. I've installed software from all sorts of different sources, and I've never had to debug the installation from the command line, which is the entire point of the exercise, isn't it? I don't mind the inflexible nature of this package management. After all, it is the authoritative packing list for your OS. I kinda want it to be accurate, for auditing purposes.

    Maybe you just need some more Fedora experience.

    mandelbr0t

  • by DragonHawk (21256) on Wednesday December 20, 2006 @02:54AM (#17309740) Homepage Journal
    You almost always have to force the installation using --no-deps --force, because RPM binaries are usually targeted at a specific distro/version.


    No. All binaries are targeted that way. When you run ./configure, it runs through a bunch of checks to figure out where things are and how they are configured, for all of the dependencies. And "dependencies" includes everything from special-purpose libraries to glibc and the kernel. It includes all the configure options, source defines, patches, compiler switches, and anything else that changes the configuration of the binary. RPM keeps track of all that stuff because that's the only way to be sure it will work. If you change any of it, sure, the resulting binary *might* *appear* to work, but it might just as easily segfault.

    Binary compatibility is hard.

    The "--force" switch tells RPM, "I know you think this is a bad idea. I say I know otherwise. Do it anyway". You can't then turn around and complain that things broke when you did that. RPM took your word for it when you said you knew better. If you didn't know better, that's your own damn fault, not RPM's.

    Put more briefly: If you think you need to use --force, you're almost certainly wrong.

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