SchoolTool not suitable for Production?

Jonathan Carter (highvoltage) jonathan at ubuntu.com
Mon Nov 15 23:01:57 GMT 2010


Hi Michael

On 10-11-15 05:17 PM, Michael Paric wrote:
> In looking to provide a "server in a box" for schools based on Ubuntu, I was excited to include SchoolTool as it is an Ubuntu-backed project. However, I would never install a non-LTS version in a production environment due to the stability issues inherent with interim releases. So this information from the SchoolToll Installation page (http://book.schooltool.org/htmlhelp/install.html) really bugs me:
> 
> "Installing SchoolTool on Ubuntu
> Start by installing the server or desktop edition of Ubuntu Linux version 10.10, “Maverick Meerkat,” or 10.04, “Lucid Lynx.” With Lucid you will get SchoolTool 1.4; with Maverick you will get SchoolTool 1.5.
> 
> SchoolTool 1.5 is considered a maintenance release. If you are creating a dedicated system to run SchoolTool, using Maverick will give you a few extra features, but if you have some reason to prefer Lucid, the overall differences between SchoolTool 1.4 and 1.5 are small.
> 
> SchoolTool 1.6 for Ubuntu 11.04 “Natty Narwhal” is slated for more substantial changes and improvements. You will need to upgrade your distribution from Lucid or Maverick to get SchoolTool 1.6 when the time comes."
> 
> Are you serious? Ubuntu is expecting us to upgrade production installations every six months in order to get improvements and fixes? Perhaps there is a better answer.

You're absolutely right. Schooltool is a very special case though, it's
under very active development and it depends on more than 82 Zope
packages alone. Keeping it back-ported to LTS versions will add a large
amount of work for the developers. In a case like this, they have to
weigh up the benefits of new bug fixes and features over making it
available on older Ubuntu releases. Schooltool isn't an Ubuntu project,
but a separate upstream project that happens to be funded by one of Mark
Shuttleworth's organisations.

Even though the situation isn't ideal currently, it will get better.
Schooltool isn't currently in the Ubuntu archives, the Schooltool guys
are currently working hard on changing that. By the next LTS release,
all of Schooltool and its dependencies will be packaged and it should be
at least slightly less work to maintain it for that release.

In the meantime, one solution may be to run Schooltool in a virtual
machine or container, and treat it like a separate appliance.

I'm not affiliated with the Schooltool project, but I am an Edubuntu
contributor and I hope that clears it up somewhat, and we are working
with the Schooltool team to make that exact problem better for our users.

-Jonathan



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