Debian dated? [was: Re: Announcement from]

Derek Broughton news at
Tue Apr 11 14:25:33 UTC 2006

Michael M. wrote:

> Daniel Carrera wrote:
>> Debian is a distro that tries to support all (free) packages more or
>> less equally. This has some benefits and drawbacks. On the one hand,
>> Debian has a gazillion supported packages, and it supports 12
>> architectures. On the other, Debian is usually dated and less newbie
>> friendly.
> I don't understand where the perception that Debian is dated comes from,
> unless you're referring exclusively to the stable branch.  

Of course that's where the perception comes from.  Considering _any_
distro's testing/unstable branch is silly.  There's a good reason why they
aren't "stable".
> Comparing Debian's stable branch with most other distros isn't really
> apples-to-apples because stable is geared toward mission-critical uses.
>   The type of home users who are choosing between or trying out distros
> like Ubuntu, (open)SuSE, Gentoo, Fedora, etc., are not going to be
> running Debian stable.

That, of course, is the point.  otoh, they can run the latest Ubuntu stable
and be (sometimes) years ahead of the current Debian stable.  One of the
problems with Debian's long release cycle is that it becomes a
self-fulfilling prophecy.  The longer you go between releases, the harder
it is to integrate the new release.  Ubuntu's stable releases should be
just as valid for mission-critical uses as Debian's, and upgrading breezy
to dapper should be less stressful than upgrading Sarge to Etch.

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