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Anyone noticed that Distrowatch Comment about Gentoo?
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skyfolly
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 7:54 am    Post subject: Anyone noticed that Distrowatch Comment about Gentoo? Reply with quote

Quote:
Pros: Painless installation of individual software packages, highly up-to-date, the "geek feeling" of building a distribution tailored to user's needs.
Cons: Long and tedious system installation, occasional instability and risk of breakdown, unsuitable for mission critical servers.


How does this sound to ya?
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 8:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

unstable? what the hell is this guy on? my gentoo system is the fastest and most stable system ive seen, the only problems come with some upgrades (ie kernel upgrades, core utils (gcc/glibc) upgrades etc). Apart from that I havent had a single crash in any program ive used so far, and i use quite agressive CFLAGS (-march=athlon-xp -O3 -pipe -fomit-frame-pointer -ffast-math -falign-functions=16 (+others))
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heh. Interesting what others think of us!!

The Cons are a bit unfair: if you want a quick 30 minute installation, then of course Gentoo ain't the one to choose. But the instability stuff, unsuitable for mission critical servers, etc. is way unfair without more context. Yup, sure if you have a server and bang in an emerge -u world every 24 hours, you might well pick up something that fouls up your environment. But the sort of person who bangs in emerge -u world and goes for a coffee isn't the sort of person who should be running a mission critical server in the first place!! :D

I think a fairer 'Con' would be "With power goes responsibility: Gentoo offers more rope to hang yourself with if you are reckless" If someone was running a mission critical server for me I would expect him to be able to do so with any mainstream distro - his sysadmin skills will be much more important than the distro itself... So if he ain't good enough to run it with Gentoo, then frankly he ain't good enough full-stop!
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 9:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Gentoo offers more rope to hang yourself with "

Quote of the week man! :lol:
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 10:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Raoul_Duke wrote:
"Gentoo offers more rope to hang yourself with "

Quote of the week man! :lol:


Thats f(#/¤ hilarious :lol: :lol:
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 11:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quick, mail it to gwn-feedback@gentoo.org before they pick one for Monday!
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FINITE
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't under stand why it would not suit a mission critical environment! You simply would not run it in a bleeding edge state. IMHO, at this point there are no other dists of linux that can touch Gentoo whether the environment be of the mission critical type or not. At one point my system had been up for 5 months. Never had a problem that forced a reboot or even a restart of X, this on an all purpose workstation. I have no doubt that other Gentoo users can beat that either.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That distrowatch comment has been posted here before. At least the "unsuitable for mission critical servers" part anyway. ;)

https://forums.gentoo.org/viewtopic.php?t=56321
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm starting to think distrowatch is full of shit. First they catch someone cheating to boost Gentoo's ranking on their stupid list and after addressing this issue Gentoo remains in the same position. The comment about instability is pretty silly considering that CXX/CFLAGS aren't required to be set.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 3:26 pm    Post subject: Re: Anyone noticed that Distrowatch Comment about Gentoo? Reply with quote

skyfolly wrote:
Quote:

Cons: Long and tedious system installation...



Seems as if the person who wrote the review is utterly inept to follow a explicit step by step guide, and they totally overlooked the stage 3 install choice.

skyfolly wrote:
Quote:

Cons: ....occasional instability and risk of breakdown...



And other operating systems aren't? A business client of mine managed to fark his Red Hat server because:
1) He couldn't install PHP 4.3.2 RPM because it requires >=libgd-2
2) So to solve that he tried to install libgd-2 RPM, but couldn't since it would break all the applications that "depended on" libgd-1.
3) To get around this, he tried to install a PHP bundled RPM, which didn't work.
4) So he got libgd-2 and php from source and built it.
5) Some time later he wanted to update PHP, but to do so he needed to update glibc (for some goofy reason).
6) Messing with glibc = server down for a week.

skyfolly wrote:
Quote:

Cons: .....unsuitable for mission critical servers.



This is solely a matter of (an inexperienced) opinion.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 5:05 pm    Post subject: Re: Anyone noticed that Distrowatch Comment about Gentoo? Reply with quote

Quote:
Pros: Painless installation of individual software packages, highly up-to-date, the "geek feeling" of building a distribution tailored to user's needs.
Cons: Long and tedious system installation, occasional instability and risk of breakdown, unsuitable for mission critical servers.


I generally agree - but the thing that makes Gentoo great is that it puts you in control of the system without loosing ease of use - the runlevel system actually works and it's MUCH better than sys V or BSD equals.

As of the long install time - we can't really deny that, compiling from scratch takes time, and putting a newbie in control of the CFLAGs can be dangerous.. Oh I'll just add -fi_want_my_system_to_crash_every_5_mins to this since everyone says it will make my box uber fast... oh yes and I use my overclocked AMD system to do this so I can really complain about breakage.
Not suitable for mission critical servers - depends, I won't say that Gentoo is crashy by nature - anymore than other distros at least, but compiling from scratch might not be an option on such a server for many people and the Gentoo QA is horrible compared to say RedHat. I wouldn't think twice about putting Gentoo on a server in my home but at my work place fx. that server I might consider running RH on, mainly from a QA standpoint.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't remember how long it takes to install Gentoo..... my last full install was when I received my new desktop, in February :)

After that, only emerging updates.

In the long run, Gentoo is much nicer to update than most distros.
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bsolar
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The "unsuitable" part is simply not correct since AFAIK it actually is used in a production environment, there are a couple of threads about that.

But to be honest, I don't care that much.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 9:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bsolar wrote:
The "unsuitable" part is simply not correct since AFAIK it actually is used in a production environment, there are a couple of threads about that.


Invalid argument - Some people even use Windows98 in a production environment, does that make it a viable or suitable solution ?
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 9:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lovechild wrote:
Invalid argument - Some people even use Windows98 in a production environment, does that make it a viable or suitable solution ?

You're right. For some more interesting argumentation I'd like to know in the reviewer's opinion what the "requirements" needed to be declared "suitable in production environments" Gentoo lacks.

BTW where I worked last time we had windows98 in production environment... forced since we had to run applications that simply refused to work in other versions. It was the only viable solution, but a painful one...:cry:
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2003 6:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gentoo is just as viable in a production environment as any other distribution. We aren't injecting some kind of anti-stability code. Fundamentally, all we're doing is packaging other applications.

If those applications aren't suitable for a production environment, it's certainly not our fault - but Apache, PHP, OpenSSH, Linux, the GNU base system, and other applications you're likely to find on a production server are pretty damn good.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2003 9:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

really gentoo is the most stable os ive used so far its more stable and faster than when this machine was running debian (not bashing just stating kuz i love debian) he must be smoking crack and shooting meth at the same time
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2003 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

someguy wrote:
smoking crack and shooting meth at the same time


Note: do not try this at home.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 2:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gentoo isnt good for a bunch of servers or a cluster. Ive already ran into this. The people that told me about Gentoo dont even run Gentoo on their (school) network.

How are you supposed to install anything? Compile for every machine. You have to setup another server so you can get some binary ebuilds made. Not every machine is identical they cant just be copied.

Plus by saying a server is needed im assuming that the server does in fact work when nothing in the past has. So id want to see it working in real life.

No one wants to spen a weekend compiling when there no good way to save it. Once per version-arch people. Stuff should be shared and reused. It being of a part of Portage would be nice.

"occasional instability" isnt that accurate. Im with you guys, its basicly the same software. But i remember all the bugs from the release of 1.4, there still up any not fixed. These were little problems with minor package version problems and some bad line in a ebuild file. That doesnt give people alot of confidence.

Plus Gentoo is fairly new, no real name. Gentoo could be ahead of the game if it actually thought about the users once in awhile but its barely in teh game now.

Portage is great now. If all the flags worked it would be perfect. Source does help speed. But know way of saving it and no rapid install ability at all is just plan crap. Check out some of the 'gurus' posts after something like this is even mentioned, its pathetic.

Well enough of this rant, its time to wonder who will get the point of this and who will just start the flames. Meh, something never change...
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 2:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

use i686. Then you only have to make 1 set of binary ebuilds. Ang gentoo bugs aren't tha big a deal (package problems) because you should always tst it on a test machine first.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 2:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mart_man00 wrote:
Gentoo isnt good for a bunch of servers or a cluster. Ive already ran into this. The people that told me about Gentoo dont even run Gentoo on their (school) network.

Computers in a cluster usually have the same or similar hardwares. You just need to compile changes once and deploy the image across all machines. I don't see any problems here.

mart_man00 wrote:

Plus by saying a server is needed im assuming that the server does in fact work when nothing in the past has. So id want to see it working in real life.

Talk for you. I am sure that a lot of gentooers may share your view, but many others don't.

mart_man00 wrote:

Portage is great now. If all the flags worked it would be perfect. Source does help speed. But know way of saving it and no rapid install ability at all is just plan crap. Check out some of the 'gurus' posts after something like this is even mentioned, its pathetic.

See stage 3 and GRP.

mart_man00 wrote:

Well enough of this rant, its time to wonder who will get the point of this and who will just start the flames. Meh, something never change...


You write as you like the flames.
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FINITE wrote:
I don't under stand why it would not suit a mission critical environment!


Distrowatch probalby relates Mission Critical to "Can be used by the unwashed IT masses" AKA "Not Redhat or Windows"

For instance if the IT staff at your corporation used a computer for the first time when they entered their 2 year training program, they are probably not going to be able to use any system other then Red Hat. They lack the passion or the geekness..

So when something goes wrong or needs to be upgraded, they can't do it, as they don't understand the concept of what they are doing other then following the instructions. Net result, shit goes bad, and your burger flipper turned IT staff can't fix it, and bang - your mission critical server goes down.

The last place I worked, I had to replace all the Gentoo Servers with RedHat servers before I left. My replacement was not able/willing to learn what needed to be done for a Gentoo system.

The init system was different, he couldn't use RPM's, config files were in different places, etc.. There was no "supidware" software to configure the config files - No Pointy-Clicky. He wasn't an idiot, or stupid, and was the best available replacement at the price. He just lacked the same level of passion for computer systems.

If you know your shite, and you've been doing it for awhile, anything can be mission critical.. From Linux from Scratch to Windows Server.

I currently have Gentoo running at 3 different companies including one with a bank of 8 cheep whiteboxes in a cluster, and I have never had a problem that made me think "Too bad I am using Gentoo"
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 5:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
use i686. Then you only have to make 1 set of binary ebuilds. Ang gentoo bugs aren't tha big a deal (package problems) because you should always tst it on a test machine first.

The extra speed from slightly different compile flags is a really nice feature. Thats part of the reason to like Gentoo(the other is of course Portage).

Quote:
Computers in a cluster usually have the same or similar hardwares. You just need to compile changes once and deploy the image across all machines. I don't see any problems here.

Not all of them, its way to pricey.

Im not just talking about a home cluster either. Use what you can get.

Quote:
See stage 3 and GRP.

Nice try :lol:

Just base system. Binary ebuilds arent perfect yet. Some extras are needed.

Quote:
You write as you like the flames.

Ive gotten a bunch before, im not worried about it anymore. The flamers never had anything to say any way, so far they have stoped any one with something to say. Im not trying to be a jerk about it, but i dont care. Im out number by jerks often.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 13, 2003 1:49 am    Post subject: The Gentoo cons Reply with quote

Thank you all for your comments and corrections to the article. I really appreciate constructive criticisms like "DistroWatch is full of shit".

But seriously. At the risk of creating more enemies among the Gentoo users, let me give you my view of the above comments and justifications for the three cons.

Quote:
Cons: Long and tedious system installation...


This has nothing to do with one's ability to follow the instructions; it simply states that installation is long and tedious. Is that statement incorrect? Can you name another distribution, installation of which takes longer and is more tiresome than Gentoo's? I didn't think so. Even other source based distributions (Sorcerer, Source Mage, Lunar) make the whole process a lot more intuitive.

Quote:
Cons: ....occasional instability and risk of breakdown...


Reports about these sort of things keep "emerging" (pun intended). Yes, you can continue claiming that it's always the fault of the person running emerge in an irresponsible way or that the person is not skilled enough to handle these type of situations. Fair enough, but I still don't see how that makes the .

Quote:
Cons: .....unsuitable for mission critical servers.


A quote from Daniel Robbins: "For this reason, we recommend that those using Gentoo Linux for servers avoid updating packages unless absolutely needed, and that newbies use something like FreeBSD, Debian or Slackware for their server needs, at least for the next six months. They're much more boring, which can be a good thing ;) Obviously, the fact that we aren't an ideal choice as a server is a *huge* concern for me and for the vast majority of our development team."
http://www.osnews.com/story.php?news_id=1080

Yes, that was a while ago, but I haven't seen Daniel coming out and saying that yes, Gentoo is now suitable for mission critical servers. And I am sorry guys, I'd really like to take your words for facts, but unfortunately too many of them smack of immaturity and zealotry.

That said, I always welcome any comments and criticism. All listed distributions have some cons, whether you like it or not. I received much email from fans of various distributions trying hard to remove one or all of the cons, although happily, none has called DistroWatch "full of shit" until today. You can either stand back, look at the whole page in its context and be honest about your distribution or you can claim that Gentoo is an absolutely perfect distribution for all purpose with no flaws whatsoever. If you claim the latter, then don't expect to see any changes on the page. If however you choose to provide me with a different set of "cons" and discuss them in a fair manner, I'd be happy to modify the page.

Thanks again!
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2003 6:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I disagree. I'd use Gentoo anytime for a server, provided I have a test box to go along.

Where I would not recommend Gentoo yet is for Desktop box because of lack of integration. I'd still go for R-H for the desktop (say, the receptionist typing letters and stuff like that). For example, you almost have to set just about every software individually if you want... nice font, locale language, ... At least, it's the case for Moz and OOo that have complete independant engins. Hard to maintain.

I had a friend calling me this weekend and told me he wish to use Linux boxes EVERYWHERE for a new business. I must caution him that he might be heading for a wall. I think I pushed too hard in promoting Linux to him :wink: .
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