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Debian Etch to be Released in December 78

Posted by Zonk
from the regular-releases-makes-for-happy-users dept.
lord_rob the only on writes "According to a ZDNet article, the next release of Debian should be available in December 2006. From the article : 'The date represents a dramatic improvement in the regularity of Debian's development cycle. Etch will be shipped only 18 months after the previous release, version 3.1.'
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Debian Etch to be Released in December

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  • by XanC (644172)
    ...when I see it.
  • by sydneyfong (410107) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @09:49AM (#15261820) Homepage Journal
    when I read this post [slashdot.org]....
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday May 04, 2006 @09:51AM (#15261833)
    It's after 3.1 so it has to be Debian 95 !
  • Damnit! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Professor_UNIX (867045) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @09:56AM (#15261896)
    What the hell is with releasing a new version so quickly? I just installed Sarge on my new web host and was hoping to get at least 2-3 years out of it as stable before I had to upgrade. Shit.

    /no, I'm not kidding.

    • in /etc/apt/sources.list and enjoy the bugfixes and security-updates for another 18 months.
    • just installed Sarge on my new web host and was hoping to get at least 2-3 years out of it as stable before I had to upgrade

      Who says you have to upgrade instantly? I know a bunch of people running FC1, or even RH9 or 7.3. If it works, you don't have to touch it - it's not like Gentoo :)

      /ducks

      • Re:Damnit! (Score:3, Informative)

        by swillden (191260) *

        Who says you have to upgrade instantly? I know a bunch of people running FC1, or even RH9 or 7.3. If it works, you don't have to touch it

        It's not a good idea to run systems, especially if they're Internet-facing, on old releases that don't get security updates.

        That said, Sarge will continue getting security updates until the successor to Etch is released, so there's no problem with continuing to run it for a couple of years yet, even if Debian manages to keep up the 18-month cycle.

        • Re:Damnit! (Score:2, Informative)

          by Überhund (27591)
          >> Who says you have to upgrade instantly? I know a bunch of people running FC1,
          >> or even RH9 or 7.3. If it works, you don't have to touch it

          > It's not a good idea to run systems, especially if they're Internet-facing,
          > on old releases that don't get security updates.

          The Fedora Legacy Project [fedoralegacy.org] provides security updates for RedHat and Fedora releases that have been end-of-lifed by RedHat. Currently, they support RH 7.3 and 9, and Fedora 1-3.
    • Re:Damnit! (Score:2, Insightful)

      by beef3k (551086)
      Sounds like you chose the wrong distro... use CentOS [centos.org] instead.
    • How true! I had been running Woody for years, then Sarge (stable) came out so, what the hell, I jumped on board... just last week! Now I have to deal with Etch!! Ah, Debian, your killing me with these 'regular' release scheduals!
  • an improvement? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by croddy (659025) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @09:57AM (#15261901)
    Sure, it's an increase in the frequency, but is it really an improvement? Are people really clamoring for an update over sarge?

    Debian's QA process takes a long time, but it's nice not to have to go through a dist-upgrade every few months on servers that need to be left alone and 'just work'.

    • Re:an improvement? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by RangerRick98 (817838) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @10:14AM (#15262060) Journal
      Poor Debian. When they don't release for years upon years, people complain and poke fun at them for being so slow. When they pick up the pace, people complain they're releasing too often. (Yes, I understand it's not the same group of people in both cases; I just find it funny.)
    • Re:an improvement? (Score:4, Insightful)

      by zaguar (881743) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @10:17AM (#15262091)
      but it's nice not to have to go through a dist-upgrade every few months on servers that need to be left alone and 'just work'.

      I assume you're referring to Ubuntu. Ubuntu does NOT require you to dist-upgrade, it is your choice. You WILL be supported on Hoary and Dapper with security releases for years. It is entirely unneccessary to upgrade every couple of months for a server. Find something, and stick with it.

      • Re:an improvement? (Score:2, Informative)

        by AmishMoshr (774633)
        Close, but not quite... Hoary and Breezy are only supported for 18 months after their initial release. Dapper, on the other hand, will have 3 years of desktop support/updates and 5 years of "server" updates. So Dapper is the only one that really has literal full years of support.
      • Well... I... wouldn't have said "Sarge" if I were referring to Ubuntu.
    • Debian's QA process takes a long time, but it's nice not to have to go through a dist-upgrade every few months on servers that need to be left alone and 'just work'.

      If by "a few months", you mean 2x18 = 36 months, then yes. You should test on a test system once it is out though. If it works and is stable (hey, you can run it for a couple months at least to check it out) you can dist-upgrade and get another 18 months. If it breaks, well you got at least a year to either a) report bugs b) fix your own setup o
    • "Are people really clamoring for an update over sarge?"

      Well, I know that I am. Sarge is almost useless on desktops nowadays*, and Etch has a lot of nice tools for servers. The upgrade will be very welcome.

      Now, don't take the above points (mainly the first one) as a critic. Debian is awesome.

      * How do Windows users deal with a 5 years upgrade cycle? Worse yet, how do Windows users deal with a 5 years upgrade cycle that won't even add any usefull feature when complete?

  • by ndogg (158021) <the...rhorn@@@gmail...com> on Thursday May 04, 2006 @10:00AM (#15261930) Homepage Journal
    What? Debian Etch is going to be released already? Damn. Not too long ago, I was playing with Woody (hey, stop giggling), and more recently, with Sarge (I said, stop giggling, frickin' school girls).

    Debian goes way to fast for me! Argh! I can't keep up!
  • It seems to me that releasing the stable branch of debian more frequently is a bad idea. Although woody was kind of outdated when it was replaced, there were still people running it. It's nice to know that once the software is running it will keep running without major maintenance for several years.

    Thus, no matter how bug-free the software is, it will still be losing some "stability" if people are forced to upgrade on an 18-month cycle. I understand that there's some pressure to compete with fedora and

    • They're very good about "oldstable".
    • by Phleg (523632) <stephen AT touset DOT org> on Thursday May 04, 2006 @10:36AM (#15262253)
      Assuming a standard 18-month release cycle, they would support a distribution for exactly the three years offered by RedHat. Each previous version of "stable" is supported for eighteen months, so support for Woody should be phased out as soon as Etch is released. If they keep with the standard release cycle, eighteen months after that when Etch+1 is released, Sarge support will be phased out.
    • Well, this release is really sooner than I was waiting for, but I think that it's not like it will hit the stability of most common desktop users. Any way, most of the Debian desktop user that I know, don't want to be updated, so they use Debian Testing sources.

      On the other hand, server applications, I'd like to suppose, and hope, that Debian staff will keep some of the stable versions of many server applications and libraries, or at least the latest tested ones.

  • So is it Debian 3.11 for Workgroups or did they make the full leap to Debian 95?

    There was a comment on the article with Vista falling behind few days ago where someone said even Etch would be release before Vista... guess he was right! :)
    • ...even Etch would be release before Vista...

      Not just Etch, but Debian's even beaten Microsoft by releasing Woody and Sarge in the time WinXP was supposed to go to Longh^H^H^HVista.

      "Debian: faster development, more secure, more features, and more stable than MS"

      lol

  • by zaguar (881743) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @10:14AM (#15262062)
    Some might like it, but 18 months is a long, long time. With distro's like Ubuntu releasing every 6 months (yes, I know about Dapper's delay) with a relatively STABLE product with cutting edge features (Gnome 2.14), is it time for Debian to rethink their policy.

    I'm not suggesting Debian shouldn't have long releases schedules (it ensures a rock-solid product), but only that they consider what it is doing to the userbase.

    • by Hellboy0101 (680494) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @10:27AM (#15262178)
      What people have to understand is that Ubuntu, for all it's goodness, is pretty much a polished over version of Debian Testing. If you want a shiny new OS, create a cron job to run apt-get dist-upgrade every 7 days (after you've added the testing/security repositories). You could have a new Debian every week if you wanted to. :)
      • And if you go the route I once did by using Sid and having a new Debian every day, make sure to install apt-listbugs so that something like the Xorg 7.0 breakage doesn't screw over your system randomly.
    • Hmm. Instead of rethinking policy for the whole Debian project, since as you point out they do have a large number of perople who actually like a slower release cycle, Debian could come up with a sub-distribution.

      This sub-distribution could be essentially Debian but with an emphasis on the latest and greatest desktop environment, newest kernel, etc. But all of the tools would remain the same (apt-get, etc.) and packages should be interchangeable. (Barring kernel or library dependencies of course - attempt
    • > With distro's like Ubuntu releasing every 6 months (yes, I know about Dapper's delay) with a relatively STABLE product with cutting edge features (Gnome 2.14), is it time for Debian to rethink their policy.

      "relatively stable" is like "kind of pregnant", first Ubuntu release I put into production was replaced inside a month with Sarge, because Sarge worked and Ubuntu didn't.

      Which is why the article is wrong, Etch will release when it is ready, which means when all the important bugs we know about are fi
      • It's not really wrong, it's that the developers are all targeting to have it ready to go in 18 months. It basically just means planning more carefully, and having a large well-trained release team on the job of having a global view of what's going on so that large transitions can be ironed out as needed so they don't hold up things endlessly like they did for sarge. There are still huge release issues (as Andreas outlines) to go for etch, but transitions are generally better managed than in the past which w
    • this is exactly why i run ubuntu at home and debian at work.. at home i like to play, at work i play it safe.. :)
  • Surely this is a sign of the end times! Seriously though, it's nice to see Debian responding to the requests of what seems to be the majority of their userbase. I know I have avoided Debian because they seemed to do releases on a geologic time scale. I admire their insistance on quality, stability, and security, but most people would like to have some modernity as well. Here's to hoping they manage to strike or more widely appealing balance.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I see some people complaining (probably out of jest) that this release is too fast.

    What a load of bollocks.

    I've been working as a server administrator for 8 years now. Debian was quite okay from '98 until about '00. After having newly upgraded from slink to potato I found that the mysql installation was so old that developers wouldn't touch it at all. Upgrading it in a nice way was not exactly an easy thing to do - as just COMPILING a newer version was hell - due to it depending on things that was too ne
    • Thank you, this exactly what I've been saying.

      Running a server on Debian can be a pain. Say, I have a mail server. Before Sarge was finally released I was stuck with an ancient version of exim without support for exiscan-acl. Sure, I could get it from backports, but that's a pain, and implies trusting an external source. I could also compile it, which is also a pain for reasons you already mentioned.

      The thing is that for a mail server, exim is THE thing I want to run, and the rest is pretty much auxiliary.
  • When a release date is announced for a stable release of Debian, it's rarely respected. I say rarely because I'm a young user of Debian. I started using it when woody was about to become stable. I don't know if previous release dates were more accurate for potato, ...
  • by Just Some Guy (3352) <kirk+slashdot@strauser.com> on Thursday May 04, 2006 @11:11AM (#15262574) Homepage Journal
    Let me get this straight: there will have been three Debian releases between major desktop Windows releases? That right there is enough to have the release management dragged out and shot. I mean, you know there's going to be a new version of OpenBSD every six months, so that's no big deal. But when Debian is out-releasing you, it's clear that your house is Not In Order.

    Congratulations, folks, seriously. I'll be looking forward to that big apt-get!

    • I'll be looking forward to that big apt-get!

      You mean, aptitude, right?
      I just installed 3.1 and to my dismay, apt-get is no where to be found. Yes, yes, aptitude is better, blah blah... but come on, I had been typing 'apt-get' for years!?

      #alias apt-get=`aptitude`

      Ahh, thats better!
  • It might be interesting to see them compete with Ubuntu. Dapper will probably be more up-to-date (judging from my experience with sarge), but Etch will probably be more stable. Of course, I probably won't find out. because I'll be running edgy.
    • You seem to forget that Ubuntu is based on Debian. This means that Debian does most of the heavy lifting that is required for making each Ubuntu release, so that Ubuntu can concentrate on developing their (GNOME) desktop. Ubuntu supports only a fraction of the amount of packages that Debian does (there's no security updates for Ubuntu's "universe" & "multiverse") and Ubuntu also supports much fewer architectures.

      You cannot seriously say that Ubuntu competes with Debian as long as Ubuntu cannot even st

  • by LightningTH (151451) on Thursday May 04, 2006 @01:05PM (#15263615)
    /# cat /etc/debian_version
    2.2 /# cat /proc/version
    Linux version 2.2.19 (root@matrix) (gcc version 2.95.2 20000220 (Debian GNU/Linux)) #11 Wed May 28 23:36:14 EDT 2003

    I'm still on Potato. It's been stable and online for the last 6 years (as I recall upgrading to potato from slink). Give me a good reason to upgrade being this is my web/mail/dns/ftp box.

    ps: cpu info shows AMD K5 75mhz
    • ps: cpu info shows AMD K5 75mhz

      weird, ps :cpu info shows something like
      "ERROR: Process ID list syntax error. ********* simple selection ********* ********* selection by list *********..."
      in my box, should I upgrade ps?

      ;)
    • Here's a reason: security updates.

      No one is making you upgrade, but there's no telling how long the backports will be supported. You might want to consider at least woody, so you can extend the life of available security patches.

      Once Etch goes stable, you might try Sarge. Just make sure you upgrade your boot loader to grub as you may have some issues with LILO (so I've heard, haven't confirmed). Then you'll keep a fairly updated box for some time to come.
      • Running latest versions of apache, proftpd, bind (chroot'd), and postfix. I figure I must be doing something right if it is still up after 6 years without any successful attacks. Considering all the automated worms today and automated port scanning for weak systems.
    • > Give me a good reason to upgrade [from potato] being this is my web/mail/dns/ftp box.

      One thing that springs to mind off the top of my head is that IP Tables (the firewall system in Linux 2.4 and higher) is much nicer to work with than IP Chains (Linux 2.2, IIRC).

      Even if you don't update the whole distro, I sure hope you've updated the services that are exposed to the internet from the versions in potato. Especially the mail server. (If you haven't, I'd seriously consider replacing the system altogeth
  • If you don't want to use the older software found in stable, use testing! It's really not that unstable (that's unstable's job). As has been said already, Ubuntu is essentially Debian Etch + a polished (brown) Gnome.

This is a good time to punt work.

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