[lubuntu-users] [lubuntu-devel] dropping i386/PPC (was: Re: State of PPC)

Ralf Mardorf ralf.mardorf at alice-dsl.net
Wed Nov 16 22:57:36 UTC 2016

On Wed, 16 Nov 2016 13:44:42 -0700, Mark F wrote:
>Aren't there other distros like Puppy to fill that niche? Why does
>Lubuntu have to cover the increasingly rare population of machines. It
>doesn't seem like it would be a problem if "Lightweight" doesn't
>extend to the lightest, oldest hardware.

There are lots of distros. Arch Linux e.g. supports I guess i686 and
x86-64. I guess actually Ubuntu's i386 is also i686. There is Arch
arm available, too, but de facto the official architectures supported
are IA-32 (most likely i686) and x86-64. In short, Arch will not drop
32 bit. There's no need to trash hardware.

OTOH this month we noticed on the Linux audio user mailing list, that
long file support for libsndfile on 32-bit architecture is broken since
three years ago and nobody noticed it until a few days ago. It's an
upstream bug, so all distros suffer from the issue. Within three years
nobody tried to record an audio file > 2 GiB on a 32-bit machine.

Regarding Firefox, Icecat, Pale Moon and QupZill, the letter is webkit
based and has nothing to do with the firefoxish browsers, I wouldn't
fear that it might become impossible to compile for 32-bit
architecture. All the times we lose irreplaceable software for other
reasons. OTOH we also get new software.

Regarding software that gets lost, one of the most important examples
are all that software that suffers from GTK's evolution. For many users,
including myself, e.g. the loss of ROXTerm is very hard
since no other terminal emu could replace it. Replacing Firefox isn't
that hard to do, since webkit based browser are anyway better.


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