Edgy in the news

m c markc.lists at googlemail.com
Sun Oct 29 20:26:09 GMT 2006

On 10/29/06, Daniel Robitaille <robitaille at fastmail.fm> wrote:
> The negative stories and blogs about Edgy are
> starting to pile up:
> Upgrading to Ubuntu Edgy Eft a "Nightmare"
> http://linux.slashdot.org/linux/06/10/28/239258.shtml
> Edgy upgrade pains and fixes
> http://www.desktoplinux.com/news/NS3291004537.html

Although it is very difficult to diagnose problems from blog and forum
posts (hence the analysis below is probably wrong, incomplete and
unhelpful) I think a large number of problems fall into the following

* Using apt-get dist-upgrade rather than upgrade-manager
   - Could this be  reduced by emphaising on the release notes, on
ubuntu.com and in the support channels, the correct way to upgrade?
   - Could apt be patched to give clearer warnings that dist upgrading
could break your system, and recommend that the user run upgrade
manager instead. In fact, just run update-manager when the user tries
this, whilst siulanousy taking their pony away from them

* Having unsupported programs and scripts run on Dapper, i.e.
Automatix, compiz, etc
   - Could be improved by forcing people to use upgrade manager and
making update manager identify specific problems then giving more
verbose instructions on how to revert/work around changes made by
these programs which are likely to result in a broken upgrade
  - Implementation of common-customizations spec and more aggressive
warnings about using Automatix and its ilk would help prevent this
occurring in the first place

* Broken X on upgrade
   - Some of these appear to be due to problems with api
incompatibilities presumably from installing newer/older drivers from
3rd part repos or from not getting the newly name drivers (due to not
using upgrade-manager?). Could these be potential problems be idenfied
by upgrade manager?
   - Composite needs to be worked around for fglrx, this is a known
bug. May be some other bugs with nvidia/fglrx not loading, but cant
work this out from peoples posts

No matter what the specific problem:
   - Implementation of the fallback/unbreakable X spec could prevent
users from ending up in this situation by falling back on vesa with
easy instructions to get back to accelerated X

Rather tellingly, clean installs from CDs appear to be almost
universally successful

Perhaps there needs to be a greater emphasis on widespread and
systematic testing of upgrades rather than the large number of
variants of CD installs in the release crunch, including from
non-standard, user abused systems

Hopefully someone could put together a ubuntu-nanny-state spec to
ensure users dont run with scissors and upgrade incorrectly and so
forth, and obviously continued work with forums people trying to get
them to post bug reports would be immensely helpful im sure.

Would  making the CD install create a separate home partition by
default encourage using CD installs for upgrades rather than updating,
and would this be desirable?


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