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Re: [gNewSense-users] Re: VLC is non free?

From: Dara Adib
Subject: Re: [gNewSense-users] Re: VLC is non free?
Date: Sat, 9 Aug 2008 20:43:09 -0400

On Thu, Aug 7, 2008 at 5:04 PM, Yavor Doganov <address@hidden> wrote:
> It makes no sense to be a branch-of-the-branch of a branch of Debian
> that mainly exists to add non-free software and some dubious
> "user-friendly enhancements" that should go in upstream projects in
> the first place.  It is more non-free stuff to clean/remove, needless
> to mention the truckload of Ubuntu-specific bugs and of course the
> huge regression with their Launchpad-b0rked translations.  And the
> lack of upgrades between stable releases, which basically makes the
> distro unsuitable for serious use.

I disagree.

While it is true that Ubuntu does add "user-friendly enhancements"
that should go in upstream projects, it is also true that these create
an experience which Debian is not as successful at. Debian is more
successful at packaging up-to-date packages in sid, but not as great
as Ubuntu when it comes to creating a coherent system (Ubuntu is far
from this, too, but not as far as Debian). The Ubuntu project asks
that developers send appropriate changes upstream and many do try to
do so, but unfortunately it doesn't always happen.

After removing restricted and multiverse packages, Ubuntu is not much
different from Debian in terms of "freeness".

On Sat, Aug 9, 2008 at 7:42 AM, Yavor Doganov <address@hidden> wrote:
> If you install a stable release of a distro, you ought to be able to
> upgrade easily and flawlessly to the next stable release (e.g. from
> gNewSense DeltaD -> DeltaH).  Reinstalling from scratch is just not an
> option.

You can upgrade from release to release with Ubuntu (though it is not
possible to skip releases when upgrading, unless you are upgrading
from an LTS release to the next LTS release). Though the upgrade takes
much longer than a clean install, I have upgraded Ubuntu several times
(7.04 -> 7.10 -> 8.04), everytime without issues after the upgrade is

One problem with Ubuntu, however, is that it is hard to have
up-to-date packages between releases. This is a stability issue, of
course, which means that this is a problem hard to solve by another
distribution without reducing stability. I solve this problem by
supplementing with Debian unstable packages and packages from the
current Ubuntu development version to keep non-system packages

While Ubuntu has many issues, I am convinced that it is the best
distribution for gNewSense to derive from.

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