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Re: Hurd Newbie Question: Is Debian GNU/Hurd stable enough for programmi
Re: Hurd Newbie Question: Is Debian GNU/Hurd stable enough for programming in C, C++, Ruby on Rails, or Python?
Thu, 03 Nov 2011 09:03:18 +0100
Dear Mark Lies,
Some of your questions are answered below.
On Wed, 2011-11-02 at 11:38 -0500, Mark Lies wrote:
> I am trying to find out if Debian GNU/Hurd is stable enough to use as
> a programming platform and learning tool in these four languages, C, C
> ++, Ruby on Rails, and Python.
Yes, you could use Hurd for all the above languages. ruby-rails-2.3 is
available via ruby1.8. Soon ruby1.9.1 will be available too.
> Additionally, I am trying to find out if Debian GNU/Hurd is stable
> enough to use with the R-statistical package, gnuplot, emacs, and TeX
> and its variants.
gnuplot and texlive is also available, but I have not tried them yet.
emacs23 currently does not build from source. However, it is available,
just drop me a line.
> I am entirely comfortable working in a *NIX environment in
> command-line mode only, ie, no windowing system installed, but am
> accustomed to working in GUI-based environments (Windows and OS X) and
> would prefer to work from a command-line terminal within a GUI.
X windows does work, but has not been tested too much yet. Most people
work on Hurd with a CLI currently. There are some quirks, consult the
Debian and GNU web pages about GNU/Hurd.
Window managers that should work include wmaker and xfce4. gnome and kde
will soon be available too.
> First of all, I am aware from information on the Debian GNU/Hurd
> website that Debian GNU/Hurd is not stable and not appropriate for
> someone who is an end-user and who needs a stable system like
> Microsoft Windows or Mac OS X or Debian GNU/Linux. Also, I know that
> some people are already using GNU/Hurd daily for simple tasks like
> email, light surfing, ftp, and other ‘simple’ things, and that
> Xwindows is glitchy and sometimes hangs completely.
Agreed. However, more testers are needed.
> I am trying to find out if Debian GNU/Hurd is stable enough for the
> purposes I mentioned in the first paragraph. I have already spent a
> lot of time searching for this information, but most answers I find
> are outdated. I've done a cursory search of the help-hurd mailing
> list archive.
I think bug-hurd and debian-hurd are much better sources of information
> I have Googled all of the obvious combinations of Debian, GNU, GNU
> Hurd, and Hurd, paired with Python, Ruby, and Ruby on rails. I
> understand that Python, Ruby, and Ruby on Rails are all compatible
> with POSIX based environments. I also understand how to follow
> instructions to compile from source. Do these languages compile from
> source and function as expected in Debian GNU/Hurd?
> Does GCC compile from source and function as expected?
Yes it does.
> Finally, I would ask the same question about the three software
> packages I mentioned. As a practical matter, will they compile and
> function as expected in the current form of Debian GNU/Hurd?
I suppose so. Please let us know about your experiences.
> Any help, information, or links to appropriate reading material that
> you can provide is most appreciated.
In case you install GNU/Hurd in a vm, like qemu/kvm consult the
Debian CD images are found at:
The netinst image is what I would recommend. In case of problems, please
send mail a to the most appropriate of the mailing lists above.