Debian Common Core Alliance

Anders Karlsson trudheim at
Sat Dec 31 12:17:21 GMT 2005

Responding directly and to the sounder ML, as this is not a user help topic.

On 12/31/05, Old Rocker <old.rocker at> wrote:
> I read recently an article in the UK magazine "Linux Format" that pointed out
> that Ubuntu had specifically opted out from being a member of the Debian
> Common Core Alliance.

Which, considering how slowly Debian moves with stable releases, is a
sensible approach from Mark and Canonical. Ubuntu's mission statement
does not gel very well with sitting on their hands waiting for other
distributions to catch up.

>  Current members include Mepis, Knoppix, Linspire, and
> Xandros, and the idea is that there should be a common core of code to which
> Debian-based distro producers could add their own to target specific users or
> to give their distros essential character.  However, the core code should
> include that which is essentially Debian and should be the basis for a common
> platform for Debian-based distros.

A better approach is to unite around the FHS and LSB imnsho. If there
are people that are unhappy that Ubuntu is not exactly the same thing
as Debian, no-one prevents those people from using Debian...

> Mark Shuttlworth is reported as saying "I'm not prepared to devote scarce
> resources to an initiative that I believe will ultimately fail." Later in the
> article (quoting Mark's wiki) he says, "There's no point here into going into
> the reasons why I feel the DCC would fail - time will tell."

I'd hazard a guess on one reason being Debian taking ages to bring
things stable enough to push out a stable release. Another reason is
the different aims the different distributions have.

> It seems to me that this is the direction that Debian-based distros should be
> heading, and even if the structure isn't perfect (I don't know that it
> isn't), it seems to me that you need to be in such an organisation to have
> your input and change its future.  However, if there are good reasons for
> believing it will end in failure, and therefore no need for Ubuntu to be
> involved, I'd like to know what those reasons are.

Considering all changes that Ubuntu makes are being pushed back
upstream (i.e. into Debian) I'd say that there is no benefit in Ubuntu
signing up to such an agreement and getting their hands tied when
there is little or no benefit coming back from it.

> I've looked up Mark's wiki, and no more information is available as to why
> Mark feels the DCC will fail.  I've Googled and found out nothing more, so
> I'm asking here if anyone can shed any light on the matter.

If you want to know Mark's views, ask Mark. My response is based on my
perceptions of the situation and what I believe to be a sensible route
to take. I chose Ubuntu because of the six month stable release cycle.
If I wanted a three year cycle, I'd still be using Debian... Ease of
use is another plus in Ubuntu that will take a long time to get
adopted in Debian.
Look how long it took Debian to adopt, that was yet another
reason for me to head for Ubuntu.

Different distributions - different aims - different goals - different
userbase. Makes no sense to sign Ubuntu up to a working group that
would take Ubuntu down a path that does not fit the goals and aims.

YMMV, #include "disclaimer.h", yada yada...

Happy New Year

Anders Karlsson <trudheim at>

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