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i386
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is my second day on Gentoo . I used RH 7.2 -> RH9.0 , SUSE , Slackware ( 2 years ). Since now except the wizard installer and some emerge errors ( of course is hard to accommodate quick ) is everything ok :) . I left behind Slackware because is very hard to update some packages without spend some days working on dependences
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 1:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Why I don't care if you are dropping recommend of Gentoo Reply with quote

chrisfreet wrote:
I don't care that I have to compile everything (generally). As a matter of fact, I like it, damnit! I don't care that it's time consuming. The control and elegance of the Gentoo way is too much to trade for the small amount of time saved in the installation of generally stable binary packages. Besides, if you do anything more than check email and edit pictures and listen to mp3s, you'll waste all that time you saved installing binaries by figuring out how to install a frickin proprietary Nvidia driver!

Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.


I think it's all about the purpose for which you want to use your computer. If you are graphic artist working with several offset-printing companies then use a Mac. If you have to work with Windows because there are tools that were written exclusively for your company and only run under that OS, then use Windows. If you need or like Linux, then use Linux. Use a distro that fits your needs! Example: My father has a slow internet connection, does a lot of office work with the computer and thats it! So why not Suse or Ubuntu? Binaries are good if you want to do updates offline (I tried with Gentoo, and it is very uncomfortable to update a system that has a slow connection or no connection to the net at all). For my purposes Gentoo is the best choice. But others may like or need Debian, Slackware, Ubuntu or others. And I don't care, because they need a specific solution and perhaps that is not Gentoo.

Everybody should be happy if he/she finds the solution to his/her problems.

P.S. I LIKE GENTOO :)
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One thing I really like about Gentoo is that portage has an ebuild for every package I want to install. When I used Fedora Core I had to install a bunch of stuff outside of their yum and rpm system (NVIDIA driver, Doom 3, UT 2k4). It's nice to actually be able to use one package management system for all software updates.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dark_glaive wrote:
One thing I really like about Gentoo is that portage has an ebuild for every package I want to install. When I used Fedora Core I had to install a bunch of stuff outside of their yum and rpm system (NVIDIA driver, Doom 3, UT 2k4). It's nice to actually be able to use one package management system for all software updates.

This is true, even severly bleeding edge software packages most likely have an ebuild in bugzilla or an overlay.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 2:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

dark_glaive wrote:
One thing I really like about Gentoo is that portage has an ebuild for every package I want to install. When I used Fedora Core I had to install a bunch of stuff outside of their yum and rpm system (NVIDIA driver, Doom 3, UT 2k4). It's nice to actually be able to use one package management system for all software updates.


This is very true. In comparison to Ubuntu (God I am sick of comparing everything to Ubuntu!), a supposed advantage is in their packages managing system, wherein a user would install binaries that are assumed to be more stable since they are compiled remotely, and supposedly correctly, by some phantom uber-compiler.

So, what is the first step in 99% of the how-tos when it comes to using Ubuntu? Implement the Universe/Multiverse repositories containing potentially malicious, broken, and/or untrusted binaries so the user can install the software he really wants!
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One of the things that gets on my nerves is the persistent assertion that people who use Gentoo use it for some kind of l33tness factor. This may or may not have been true years ago but I installed Gentoo as a relative newcomer to Linux after several months of frustration in not being able to fully figure out how to solve problems on a Mandrake system.

When the Mandrake install got hosed pretty well, I decided to attempt a Gentoo install just because I'd heard that it was really hard but you'd learn a lot by installing it, and I thought I needed some kind of fundamentals exercise in Linux.

As I've been saying since, Gentoo actually installed easily. I remember not understanding the chroot business - what it was or why you do it during the install - but other than that, following the directions as they were written at the time, it installed on the first try. I remember being aghast at having to configure X by myself, and really wigged out over configuring a kernel on my own.

I almost gave up just out of intimidation, but...with just a little reading, I got through it all, and it worked. The first time. None of it was a big deal except understanding what some of the kernel modules do. I still wish there was a Wiki out there with entries for every kernel module and detailed explanation of what the module does, who needs it, the consequences of not including it, and so on. Does anyone know of such a thing? With the passing years and googling, I've understood more and more of what each module does, but I still have a lot of questions. The built in help is of limited use.

But all of this - the manual install, the DIY-ness about it - it never felt "l33t" to me, and I don't know anyone who installs it today for that reason, though people do often express concern that the install is hard. Since this time I've tried 7 or 8 other distros on a spare machine just to see what they were like, and I've never once considered switching.

I can see why putting Gentoo onto an important production server has its own set of concerns, and as I've not done this, I have nothing to say about it. Except that my home machine is used for a variety of fairly important (to me) tasks, and I rely on it. Now that I've gotten used to it, I can't really conceive of giving up a lot of the configurability and customization Gentoo encourages. I have some Debian machines around, which run on very old, slow machines. When I install Debian, I immediately install make-kpkg and configure my own kernel, and edit config files by hand, out of habit. In other words, I treat any Linux machine I use like a Gentoo one to the extent that that is possible. I find myself reading a lot of docs about package managers to figure out how to simulate portage features where possible, and feel a little...cheated or uncomfortable or something, when the full range of portage's features are not immediately and easily available (Always the case to some degree).

Can you do all the things in other distros that you can do with portage? Maybe. But not as easily, and not as obviously. In many cases, not without massive manual intervention.

But my point is that Gentoo has set firm expectations for me now in the same way Windows 95 did when that came out (which seems insanely long ago...Actually, it kind of is). Everything I encounter I subconsciously compare to Gentoo, and the less like it it is, the less pleasant my experience.

Is this healthy? Perhaps not, but if your attitudes and habits are going to develop around one OS or another, I can think of worse ones than Gentoo. All of this puts me in a sort of unique position of saying to people who ask me about it, "From what I've read, most people do not recommend Gentoo to newcomers to Linux. They recommend Ubuntu or Mandriva, or OpenSuSE. But as a new user, Gentoo definitely worked well for me and I wouldn't go back and time and suggest I get my feet wet with another distro, if I could."

I'm still not really good at figuring out and solving compile problems. As a non-programmer (I script a bit) I feel a little lost sometimes when something doesn't work. I'd like to contribute more in terms of solving these problems but I'm not sure where to start. Gentoo empowers users - the unwashed non-developer masses like myself - to get themselves into serious trouble, especially with unstable packages that we install at our own peril. Obviously, no one likes to get into this kind of trouble, but then again, I like danger and accept the consequences of embracing it. Not that I don't curse wildly sometimes, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

5 years later, I can't imagine switching to something else. As for recommending it, it depends on who is asking. New users who really want to make the switch to Linux, definitely. People who are merely vaguely curious about Linux, generally not. Experienced Linux users who are sick of their distros don't talk to me :)
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

chrisfreet wrote:
a supposed advantage is in their packages managing system, wherein a user would install binaries that are assumed to be more stable since they are compiled remotely, and supposedly correctly, by some phantom uber-compiler.

Slight caveat: I'm far, far more familiar with Debian than with Ubuntu. :-) With that proviso firmly in mind, here goes:

The phantom uber-compiler (or "buildd") approach has several real advantages:
    1) QA. If the package doesn't build correctly on the autobuild network, it won't get into the archive. On Debian the developers must upload a deb package for one architecture (usually x86) together with the source package, but that's no guarantee it'll build on other architectures (or even on x86, possibly - they might've forgotten to specify a build-dependency which is present on their machine but won't be present on the autobuilder, though this is very rare since the introduction of pbuilder).
    2) Automation - it automates the process of building the package across many different architectures, as opposed to loads of different devs having to run the build manually on each platform by hand.
    3) Reproducability/peer review - the build logs are automatically made available at a central location.
    4) Coordination - the buildds report build status and related information to a central database. (You can see who's building what, when, where, and how it turns out).

chrisfreet wrote:
So, what is the first step in 99% of the how-tos when it comes to using Ubuntu? Implement the Universe/Multiverse repositories containing potentially malicious, broken, and/or untrusted binaries so the user can install the software he really wants!

Erm, no. With all due respect, I'm not an Ubuntu fan either, but please let's stick to legitimate criticisms when finding fault.

The key word in what you wrote is "potentially". Disclaiming responsibility for something (or refusing to offer a guarantee - take your pick) isn't the same as saying something's crap - see e.g. the warranty disclaimers in pretty much every Open Source/Free Software license or the maintainer/herd setups in Debian and Gentoo, where different groups are responsible for different bits. Unfortunately, users don't read documentation or click-throughs so if Ubuntu shipped with multiverse and universe enabled by default (or offered the choice in the install) most users wouldn't even be aware of the distinction. This way, people have to spend a couple of minutes of their time finding out how to enable those two repos, at which point they'll be confronted by the "YOU DO THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK, WE BEAR NO RESPONSIBILITY, ETC ETC" disclaimer at the same time.

Universe and multiverse are official Ubuntu repositories, not some kind of ghetto. It's just that they're community maintained (by the Masters Of The Universe) rather than by the Canonical-backed Core Development Team which presides over the main and restricted components. This is not a firm basis on which to argue that they're any more or less potentially malicious, broken and/or untrusted than the main and restricted Ubuntu components, or than Gentoo or Debian Unstable/Sid for that matter.

quag7 wrote:
One of the things that gets on my nerves is the persistent assertion that people who use Gentoo use it for some kind of l33tness factor. This may or may not have been true years ago

Hehe - if you have time, the "Are we losing users to Gentoo?" Debian mailing list thread (and the coverage on these forums) make for fascinating historical background on the Gentoo hype bubble. :-)
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

quag7 wrote:
When I install Debian, I immediately install make-kpkg and configure my own kernel, and edit config files by hand, out of habit. In other words, I treat any Linux machine I use like a Gentoo one to the extent that that is possible. I find myself reading a lot of docs about package managers to figure out how to simulate portage features where possible, and feel a little...cheated or uncomfortable or something, when the full range of portage's features are not immediately and easily available (Always the case to some degree).


This also has been my exact experience with other distros, and a big reason why I started this thread.

Sytaxis wrote:
chrisfreet wrote:
So, what is the first step in 99% of the how-tos when it comes to using Ubuntu? Implement the Universe/Multiverse repositories containing potentially malicious, broken, and/or untrusted binaries so the user can install the software he really wants!


Erm, no. With all due respect, I'm not an Ubuntu fan either, but please let's stick to legitimate criticisms when finding fault.... This way, people have to spend a couple of minutes of their time finding out how to enable those two repos, at which point they'll be confronted by the "YOU DO THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK, WE BEAR NO RESPONSIBILITY, ETC ETC" disclaimer at the same time.


I don't believe there's anything illegitimate about my opinion, and you essentially have illustrated it by saying this (with which I agree entirely):

Sytaxis wrote:
... This is not a firm basis on which to argue that they're any more or less potentially malicious, broken and/or untrusted than the main and restricted Ubuntu components, or than Gentoo or Debian Unstable/Sid for that matter.


I submit there is no reason why a Gentoo system cannot be as stable as a Debian system if that's what I chose to maintain.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 6:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

OT:

This thread made headlines in the weekly newsletter. Good job!
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 7:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't recommend Gentoo to anyone until the installer is fixed, or at least given
some reasonable warning messages or options (eg: Do you really, really want me to
overwrite the entire partition table of /dev/hda???). If you've been using Gentoo for
some time, and already know how to install it from a stage 3 (or stage 1) then it's a
pretty good idea. It's just that you really don't under any circumstances release an
installer that blows away partitions; I've installed a _lot_ of different OSes and releases,
and the only one that played a similar trick on me was I think an early Windows.

I run Gentoo on a laptop which is my only machine at the moment, with 1GHz and 500Mb,
and it's more than enough to compile anything I need without significant delays; I think
that X-windows was the longest, probably a few hours in fact, but I just left the machine
to it and went out for the evening. Furthermore (and the reason I installed Gentoo)
configuring the kernel to the specific laptop hardware is pretty easy, and the result is
an extremely stable OS. It just doesn't hang or crash, although I've recently had two
failures on shutdown that look like memory going bad.

The other good thing is that it's pretty easy to administer. I recently set up a wireless
test connection with a Pentium (133MHz and 64MB) that I found in a skip, dual booting
between Win 98 and Gentoo 2005.1. Both cards I used had apparently current
Windows drivers which installed without difficulty, (the laptop dual-boots to W2K), but
there was no way I could get the two machines to talk under Windows and the OSes
were absolutely opaque; either something worked when you clicked on a dialog, or
it didn't. There was no way to find out what was happening, or change it.

Under Gentoo I had the link set up and routed in 30 min. or so, probably an hour if
you include finding and downloading some of the drivers. Since I could see what was
happening I could see what was going on and reconfigure accordingly. Windows
certainly doesn't allow that; another Linux might, but Gentoo makes it very easy.
I just hope they ditch the installer, or at least put a stage 3 file on the Live DVD.

Will
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cwr wrote:
I wouldn't recommend Gentoo to anyone until the installer is fixed, or at least given some reasonable warning messages or options (eg: Do you really, really want me to overwrite the entire partition table of /dev/hda???). If you've been using Gentoo for some time, and already know how to install it from a stage 3 (or stage 1) then it's a pretty good idea.


Well, that's kinda the point of this forum. Honestly, as I've mentioned, I've only used the graphical installer once so I have no idea what all the fuss is about. I used it a long time ago when it first came out, but not again because of that very problem. Since it has been so long, I just assumed that issue was worked out. I find it hard to believe that there are still those kind of issues with that graphical installer this far down the line. I am assuming the issue you speak of is the inadvertent deleting of the partition table? That's what happened to me, some 4 or 5 years ago, I think.

cwr wrote:
The other good thing is that it's pretty easy to administer. I recently set up a wireless test connection with a Pentium (133MHz and 64MB) that I found in a skip, dual booting between Win 98 and Gentoo 2005.1.


Speaking of wireless, once the magical configuration is found for wpa_supplicant (let's please not go into getting to this point! Thankfully, wireless configuration issues are not limited to Linux, or specifically, Gentoo), I've never found an easier way to implement wireless connections than using Gentoo to start the network service. For example, I find NetworkManager to be a real pain in the arse. (I'm intentionally avoiding the "U" word here.)
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

chrisfreet wrote:
Sytaxis wrote:
... This is not a firm basis on which to argue that they're any more or less potentially malicious, broken and/or untrusted than the main and restricted Ubuntu components, or than Gentoo or Debian Unstable/Sid for that matter.


I submit there is no reason why a Gentoo system cannot be as stable as a Debian system if that's what I chose to maintain.

Good for you. Unfortunately, I don't see how this has anything to do with what I wrote. Nor did your post to which I was replying mention Debian at all.

Oh, well... :?
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 9:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Syntaxis wrote:
chrisfreet wrote:
Sytaxis wrote:
... This is not a firm basis on which to argue that they're any more or less potentially malicious, broken and/or untrusted than the main and restricted Ubuntu components, or than Gentoo or Debian Unstable/Sid for that matter.


I submit there is no reason why a Gentoo system cannot be as stable as a Debian system if that's what I chose to maintain.

Good for you. Unfortunately, I don't see how this has anything to do with what I wrote. Nor did your post to which I was replying mention Debian at all.

Oh, well... :?


If you wish to quibble with my opinion, I'll be happy to supply you with my email address. I was using your statement to make a point that did not involve you at all -- my last statement has nothing to do with what you wrote.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 27, 2007 10:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

quag7 wrote:
I still wish there was a Wiki out there with entries for every kernel module and detailed explanation of what the module does, who needs it, the consequences of not including it, and so on. Does anyone know of such a thing?
god, I wish. Or better yet, a giant hammer poised to squash kernel devs should they rename a module. Imagine USB compiled as module, hid in modules.autoload.d, and your latest kernel upgrade renames it to usbhid. Did I mention your keyboard is USB? What now?

(solution was an emergency PS/2 keyboard.)
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 2:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To me gentoo installation and maintaining is for those who are willing to invest some considerably amount of time figuring things out. I am a computer science major, and gentoo definitely taught me much about linux and unix in general. But the thing is, there was not one problem I have encountered that I couldn't fix in gentoo, because it is transparent enough to let me fix the problems, unlike some other OSes that just leave me scratching my head and feeling helpless. I had a friend (another computer science major) who used Redhat before, and we tried to get something to work on there. Everything was just so unclear, it almost seemed like windows. So I got him to install gentoo, and he never looked back since.

Frankly I like the manual install (I did from stage 1, but stage 3 looks fine to me) better than anything else, because it shows you what is going on, and you are in control. Coming from windows, it's such a relief. The graphical stuff is a pain in the arse (I get all kinds of windows flashback with it) and I never had it working when I tried to install on other people's computers. The graphical environment is nice though, because I can fire up a decent graphical browser and read docs and get help if I encounter problems. So far I've helped 5 or 6 people install gentoo, and they all like what they see.

I concede the install process is not for everyone. But I know that I can configure gentoo to be more than stable enough (and safe enough) for an average user to use it, and when there is a problem, they can usually figure it out by reading the docs or forums, or I can help.

This is my first linux distro. I'm not saying it's better than other distros, but this is my experience with it. Can it be better? Absolutely. Am I happy with it? Absolutely. I suspect it will remain my only distro for a long time to come. I recommend gentoo to all who come to me expressing an intoerest in linux, because I know I can help them set up an easy to use environment that is stable and easy to maintain.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 2:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

maverick256 wrote:
But the thing is, there was not one problem I have encountered that I couldn't fix in gentoo, because it is transparent enough to let me fix the problems, unlike some other OSes that just leave me scratching my head and feeling helpless. I had a friend (another computer science major) who used Redhat before, and we tried to get something to work on there. Everything was just so unclear, it almost seemed like windows. So I got him to install gentoo, and he never looked back since.


I had the same experience with Suse when I first used it, and of course, Red Hat. I tried Red Hat because it was sexy at the time; had totally no luck at all in wasting my time to fiddle with it. Maybe that's good, I don't know. When the new Suse environments started rolling out, I tried those too because of the lure of automation via Yast, etc. Ended up dreading using it because of Yast, not to mention the automation.

So, when Ubuntu became sexy, well I tried it too. Sex is overrated.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 6:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with what you're saying, chrisfeet, but conversely I feel that so much well-intended and constructive criticism has been shrugged off by the smug elite. I haven't seen anyone say "I hate Gentoo" but I have seen some of the most well-worded and polite explanations of why they're moving on, only to get responses ranging simply from "Goodbye" all the way to being called ungrateful and greedy.

I could have written any of them at any time in the last three years, unlike them I've still stuck with Gentoo in spite of agreeing with them completely on the shortcomings of the distro. I've avoided commenting because I know how such opinions are received, and ultimately I'll be told "if you want it this way, do it yourself!". Not everybody can. Some people are much better at helping others see the shortcomings of their own work. These forums have been fortunate enough to have had many such visionaries in the past, and foolish enough to ignore them.

Accept the criticisms that are valid and constructive. Argue those that are incorrect. Don't tell people to "use another distro 'coz you obviously just don't understand". With this criticism I believe Gentoo is capable of so much more. I'm still here and I honestly can't say whether I'm still here because of my faith things will change or that I'm too lazy to switch.
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 28, 2007 1:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bent wrote:
I agree with what you're saying, chrisfeet, but conversely I feel that so much well-intended and constructive criticism has been shrugged off by the smug elite. I haven't seen anyone say "I hate Gentoo" but I have seen some of the most well-worded and polite explanations of why they're moving on, only to get responses ranging simply from "Goodbye" all the way to being called ungrateful and greedy.


I've seen some of this myself.... What's your beef with Gentoo such that you've considered giving it up? As I have mentioned in my several posts in this thread, I too have felt the same along the path of my experience, only to realize that I had gotten so used to portage and the manual configuration that the trade-offs using other distros never really out-weighed the shortcomings of Gentoo that I didn't like at the time. (I say at the time because with experience I have found most of my objections to be very minor, now.)
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been reading this thread, and because of this topic I have chosen to become a member.
I am a Gentoo hobbyist, and proud of it. I have been using Gentoo on my two machines(main,Mythtv box) for almost two years now.

Some of you might think this is fan talk,well,it is! Gentoo and its community should be proud of this OS.Before Linux all I knew was how to screw up
Windows royally, and spend countless hours searching for hacks and hacked programs that I didn`t understand.Before Gentoo, Distrowatch was my
favorite bookmark, I can`t count how many ISO`s I`ve burned.I am not guru by any means.I never became a member because I have nothing to
contribute but my gratitude..so here goes.

Thanks to all the devs for you`re hard work keeping this unique distro going. (I cant imagine switching to another)
Thanks to the community and this forum.(Even the whiny ones! they keep the devs on there toes) I would be lost with out it.lol
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 1:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

chrisfreet wrote:
I've seen some of this myself.... What's your beef with Gentoo such that you've considered giving it up?

Sorry to be vague - but they've all been voiced by someone else before. One by one they've been told told to piss off and one by one they have. On one hand there's a shortage of devs and security fixes are waiting a long time. On the other we're not letting a constructive debate get in the way of our desire to insult someone and ridicule their suggestions.

Since my last post and this one, I've made some shocking discoveries about our community. Yesterday I thought we were perilously atop a slippery slope of flamewars and politics. Today I believe we're halfway down it. Today I believe Gentoo is dying. Yesterday I wondered if I could dedicate an hour a day to helping, and if it would. Today I have no doubt I'd only be fuelling a fire.

I know you don't care. Before long there'll be none of you left to not care.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been using Linux on and off for a few years now - over 10 I think - (SuSE 5.3 release I think).

Basically while I saw Linux with a future on the server or home router front - it always seemed to be just a little behind the latest and greatest Windows / Office had to offer - OpenOffice really made a push into windows terratory - a free office like environment that anyone could download and use for free, but somehow I couldnt bring myself the dump the windows partition - games I liked to play was one of the main reasons.

By the time I was using SuSE 9.0 Pro - just before Novell bought SuSE linux was far improved from its past - SuSE still did odd things that firends using redhat or the new Fedora Core would laugh at - but with some bashing about after the setup it did pretty much all I wanted it too.

Then Windows XP was launched (or at least at that point I installed and used it) - and wow - it was a very different experiance - I dumped linux off my desktop and latop right there and then. Some time after I bought a Sun workstation after always wanting one - an Ultra 10 - but whats this - SuSE stopped work on sparc at 7.3 - I cant run that old crap, the only up to date and working distro was Gentoo - so I figured I better give it a go - what a learning curve - new arch and new distro - I ran that box for about 18 months before deciding that an old SUN is just to slow for my neads - and with a few annoyances with portage breakage (at least partly my fault) and some packages available for x84 and not sparc - so I replaced it with an x86 box - but changed from gentoo to CentOS (inline with a box at work actually) - TBH, I havnt looked back - CentOS just seems so right for a server box - its not bleading edge but its really REALLY solid.

I did feel that I was getting out of touch - and on being presented with a new laptop decided it was time to have a go with gentoo as a desktop - since I hadn't been down this road before - I was impressed - REALLY impressed - not only did the install just work fine but past experiances had taught me most of the pitfalls before I started - so within 3 days I had a working base system - with Xorg and KDE - a few more kernel compiles later and I had working sound, battery meter etc... another day saw the Nvidia drivers, Beryl / Emerald installed (I never thought I would keep them but I love beryl and dont like to be without it now...)

Quite suddenly I have a stable working machine - but for the Wifi card that was a bit of a pain (working now tho) it was all quite simple. FC6, SuSE 10.2 are in the bin - Gentoo just seems to fit with me better than anything else ;)

I know my desktop looks like a Vista machine at the moment - but thats more because MS finally got a nice look than because I want to trick people into thinking I run vista ;)
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Simius
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

metacircular-evaluator wrote:
To the original poster:
It is not the thing to read books and/or learn. It is not the thing that Gentoo is hard to setup or run.

The biggest hurdle about Gentoo is to make real stable: Just as you wrote stable as Slackware.

Why is it not possible to make a portage tree that gives always the stable packages (I mean here also
the constant version of the packages) with just the security patches backported into it. Just as Debian makes.
But for portage.
So that we can install using the dynamic configuration(use-flags) but get stable packages.

If Gentoo would do this then it will be just the king of all distros.

:(

Well, I'm entirely sure that Gentoo itself won't do this. Gentoo is a bleeding edge distro, not a "safe" distro, and the Gentoo devs are pretty busy with keeping the system up-to-date.

That said, the infrastructure Gentoo has makes it more than possible for a third party group (like you and your friends) to fork the Portage tree, find rock-solid versions of each package, and start backporting safety fixes, and patches for hard-to-reproduce bugs that are still showstoppers when they do manifest... You could call it Gebian.

A repository could be set up, and if somebody wants to use it, he just changes his rsync server setting.

As you can see, nobody forbids the creation of such a tree. It's just that nobody really WANTS to create such a tree. (Many would WANT the tree, but none of them is too keen on getting down to the dirty work and doing it himself.) There is entirely too much pressure on the Gentoo devs to keep Portage on the bleeding edge, which, for multimedia work, certain software development projects, games, and the like, is much more important than having a 100% flubless system.
Especially if that 100% flubless system is 2 years behind its time.

So if you want such a tree, start organizing a developer community, and begin coding.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 2:11 pm    Post subject: Why Gentoo ownz Ubuntu, RedHat, Suse and all binary distros Reply with quote

Not because of the l33tness factor.

When I first started using Linux, I installed RedHat in 1997 from a CD I received with some IT magazine. Installation was straightforward, only a bit steeper than installing Windows. The system booted up, things worked.

Well, things looked as if working. X and everything.

Then I wanted to adjust something. And I was at a total loss. All those files in /etc... I changed something in one, and apparently nothing happened. (Like, I wanted to set network security policies, and I used hosts.allow and hosts.deny... My daemons didn't give a shit, and I was totally dumbstruck as to why.) I hadn't the slightest idea about what programs the individual config files belong to, what reads what, where to do this or that...

I didn't understand the directory structure. Something froze (yes, things did that a LOT), and I didn't know what froze. I installed a new program from rpm, and I couldn't find it.

It was a total chaos, so I formatted my Linux partition in favour of Windows.

Some time later I tried SUSE, I don't remember which version. It had KDE, and it looked very user-friendly. I also did some reading on UNIX filesystem conventions, the device filesystem, and how things generally work. At first I thought YAST was pretty cool, but when I didn't find an option in YAST, and changed the respective file in /etc... I found that YAST overwrote my setting in no time. BLAAAH.

Most of the workings of the system were hidden from me, and yet the system wasn't built well enough to use and manage it in a Windows manner. It froze a lot, and I didn't have the slightest idea why. I eventually erased Linux again.

Then I needed Linux to create a home router, so I read up on networking in Linux, daemons, ipchains, and I set up a Debian box as a router. Debian setup was much less straightforward than SUSE, so it allowed me to familiarize myself with the system. First I didn't install ANYTHING but the base system. I had a skeletal system with a textmode Midnight Commander as my single luxury. I configured it - /etc was comfortably small, I could chew through all config files, understand them and edit them. When my system was cleanly put together, I installed X, and set X up. Then I found that even though many X software places files in /etc, I don't need to edit those, as they only contain system defaults.

I created my first working Linux system, and I kept it for years.

Later, I grew annoyed by how out-of-date Debian was. I needed Gnome2, but I couldn't install it, as not even the Testing branch had it. Software I wanted to use depended on libraries one or more major versions above the one in Debian Stable. I began searching for a distro to replace Debian. I didn't want to return to SUSE and friends, as their enforced complexity still freaked me out. And well, I found Gentoo.

I replaced Debian in no time. Gentoo is elegant and simple, no complex install apps, the only things going up are the stuff I explicitly say to install. It gives even more control to the user than Debian.
If I was a n00b right now, and had enough motivation to really understand Linux, then installing Gentoo once would clear up all my blank spots in how a UNIX system works, and how I can keep one working. This is something neither Ubuntu, nor SUSE, nor any other binary distro does.

I haven't used "user-friendly" distros in a few years, but I'm entirely too sure that they haven't quite caught up to Microsoft in integrating the whole system into a snugly fitting black box, with all important controls wired nicely into the gui. A Linux needs someone to look into its intetnals from time to time, or it just won't do what the user intends it to do. Something gets upgraded, something breaks, and well, it's time to go system diving.
Thus, "user-friendly" distros are really "user-unfriendly", or "user-totally-freaking-out" distros, and always will be.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bent wrote:
chrisfreet wrote:
I've seen some of this myself.... What's your beef with Gentoo such that you've considered giving it up?

Sorry to be vague - but they've all been voiced by someone else before. One by one they've been told told to piss off and one by one they have. On one hand there's a shortage of devs and security fixes are waiting a long time. On the other we're not letting a constructive debate get in the way of our desire to insult someone and ridicule their suggestions.


Since you've only listed 1 concrete issue here, I'll address it: security fixes. (The rest of your comment sounds like complaints, and there isn't much to go on there.) I'm no one, I don't know anything, so please take this with a grain of salt: if you have a problem with security fixes that aren't getting fixed, build a binary for yourself. You said you've stuck with Gentoo, so I assume that means you still run the environment -- this means you are completely capable of doing what is needed to build whatever you need to fix what you consider broken. Then, contribute. But, what do I know? This is only what I would do if I perceived this problem as you appear to perceive.

I'll be completely honest with you, I'm just a 35 year old guy who uses Gentoo and likes it, so 1/2 the language here I see about "flaming" etc. I have no idea what it means; but it appears you've had your sensibility tested by the forums. I'm sorry for that. I don't take it that seriously. Respectfully, your posts here sound more like the argument for action against so-called "global warming"... as in, we must do something drastic now or the whole world is going to collapse 100 years down the road.

Personally, I don't see how any of the problems you've cited so far are unique to Gentoo. There are some specific issues, just as there are specific issues with other distributions/operating systems. At lest with Gentoo we are armed with an environment that lets us fix it ourselves, assuming that's what we choose. Again, this is exactly part of the reason I started this thread.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2007 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Simius wrote:
That said, the infrastructure Gentoo has makes it more than possible for a third party group (like you and your friends) to fork the Portage tree, find rock-solid versions of each package, and start backporting safety fixes, and patches for hard-to-reproduce bugs that are still showstoppers when they do manifest... You could call it Gebian.


I absolutely love it! But seriously, this has exactly been my point.....
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