[ubuntu-studio-devel] i386 architecture will be dropped starting with eoan (Ubuntu 19.10)

Erich Eickmeyer erich at ericheickmeyer.com
Fri Jun 21 14:52:34 UTC 2019

Hello Steve,

>Last year, the Ubuntu developer community considered the question of
>to continue carrying forward the i386 architecture in the Ubuntu
archive for
>future releases.[1]  The discussion at the time was inconclusive, but in
>light of the strong possibility that we might not include i386 as a release
>architecture in 20.04 LTS, we took the proactive step to disable upgrades
>from 18.04 to 18.10 for i386 systems[2], to avoid accidentally stranding
>users on an interim release with 9 months of support instead of letting
>continue to run Ubuntu 18.04 LTS with its 5 years of standard support.
>In February of this year, I also posted to communicate the timeline in
>we would take a final decision about i386 support in 20.04 LTS[3], namely,
>that we would decide in the middle of 2019.
>The middle of 2019 has now arrived.   The Ubuntu engineering team has
>reviewed the facts before us and concluded that we should not continue to
>carry i386 forward as an architecture.   Consequently, i386 will not be
>included as an architecture for the 19.10 release, and we will shortly
>the process of disabling it for the eoan series across Ubuntu
>While this means we will not provide 32-bit builds of new upstream versions
>of libraries, there are a number of ways that 32-bit applications can
>continue to be made available to users of later Ubuntu releases, as
>in [4].   We will be working to polish the 32-bit support story over the
>course of the 19.10 development cycle.  To follow the evolution of this
>support, you can participate in the discourse thread at [5].
>[1] https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-devel/2018-May/040310.html
>[2] https://launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/ubuntu-release-upgrader/1:18.10.10
>[4] https://lists.ubuntu.com/archives/ubuntu-devel/2018-May/040348.html

It took me a while to reach this decision, but I believe my response is
in order.

I really wish the flavor leads had been consulted prior to this decision
being made. You yourself even sponsored a package back in March that is
directly affected by this decision.

One of the biggest features of Carla being in the repositories is that
it allows a WINE Bridge for Windows-based VST plugins, the vast majority
of which are STILL compiled in 32-bit. Without 32-bit support, this
feature is dead. This makes converting to Ubuntu Studio from Windows
especially hard on those who rely on Windows VST plugins, the vast
majority for which there is no Linux alternative. If this WINE bridge
disappears due to this decision, so does a large part of our user base.
We're talking a huge chunk of professional recording studios and artists
that would rather not be running Windows.

I understand this decision has been made, but with my Ubuntu Studio
Project Leader hat on, I can say that this is an extreme disservice to
our user base and community. If it's possible to reconsider this
decision at this point, I urge you to do so.

Best regards,
Erich Eickmeyer
Erich Eickmeyer
Project Leader
Ubuntu Studio


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