Response to "Getting Fedora Out of the If-Then Loop"

Christoph Wickert christoph.wickert at
Sat Feb 20 03:42:46 UTC 2010

Am Freitag, den 19.02.2010, 20:10 -0500 schrieb Josh Boyer:
> >
> >Me and a lot of ambitious people are already working hard on the spins.
> Yes, we do!

Great! Please be so kind as to tell me what you or the board have been
working on recently to support the spins.

> >I don't see what more we can do. If you take a look at my examples, you
> >will see there is nothing where we could just pith in and do it. Instead
> >these are ether resource issues and we are not to decide on them or
> >other things outside our scope.
> Not sure what you meant by your last sentence.

Well, please take a look at my examples and tell me what more the Xfce,
LXDE or Spins SIG could do. All the things I named are outside their
scope: We are not do decide about infrastructure, we are not to decide
about marketing, budget and so on.

> >The spins SIG offered to take over testing of the spins, but so far
> >there has been no agreement between spins SIG and rel-eng.
> Communicate again?  I don't see how/why that would be a problem.

This definitely is something, that we (Spins SIG) need to discuss again
with rel-eng.

> >Because me as the primary creator was not even aware of the images.
> >Nobody in rel-eng bothered to contact the spin owners after they created
> >the images, so the owners were not able to test them.
> Did you compose your own for testing?

As I wrote previously in this thread: I composed my own images for
testing and I tested all the nightly ones from alt.fp.o. I even gave
away 40 discs and a couple of USB keys of them on an event a week before
release and none of them had any issues.

> >I doubt that 2,4 GB which (total sum of Xfce and LXDE for i686 and
> >x86_64) make a large difference. And I doubt we couldn't save these 2,4
> >GB somewhere if really necessary.
> It's not 2,4GB.  If it was, that would imply that your spin is the only
> one worth having direct downloads.  It's:
> <spin size> * <number of arches> * <number of spins>

LXDE i686:   464 MB
LXDE x86_64: 466 MB
Xfce i686:   679 MB
Xfce x86_64: 684 MB
Sum:        2293 MB

> It explodes rather quickly when you get into the "why don't the XYZ,
> ABC, 8UR spins have direct downloads on the mirrors?" type issues.

I agree we need to draw a line somewhere, but why did we draw it after
KDE? I am only talking of the alternate desktops, not of things like the
games spin or FEL. This is not because I don't think they are not worth
downloading or I'm involved in this or that spin, but because
     A. these spins have a significant smaller number of downloads and
     B. people usually think about which desktop they want before they
        install. For games and tools this is different: They can easily
        be added later.

> Also, it's _really_ hard to drop 2,4GB on the mirrors when you have
> a rapidly growing package repository, up to 3 fully supported releases
> plus updates, and now throw NFR into the mix.  There is no magical
> amount to just "save".

But on the other hand there is no magic to save us from breaking the 1
TB limit. Sooner or later we *will* break it because we are not
rejecting new package submissions. I don't think it really matters if we
break it now or in one year. We need to find a general solution to this.

> >Right, this was already on another topic, the commitment from Red Hat in
> >general. Let's skip this, it doesn't belong here. I have named 6 groups
> >in Fedora or 6 issues where there is to little support for the spins.
> >You only commented on 2 of the issues.
> I can't comment for Marketing, the Design team, or FESCo, so I won't.
> (I only counted 5 as well, so I'm missing the 6th?)

The 6th was buried in another mail in the thread on ambassadors-list.
The 6th group I named was the board, but Paul kindly replied to that one

> >> All of the above seem very much problems with resource contraints.  If
> >> we had infinite resources, we could provide equal support for whatever
> >> Spin was created.  We don't have infinite resources.  I will go so far
> >> as to say that the resources we have are insufficient for our current
> >> demand as it is.  Rel-Eng, QA, Infrastructure, Design team, all of them
> >> need more people.
> >
> >Right, we don't have infinite resources, so we need to arrange them
> >better and more suitable.
> More suitable for whom?  Just for XFCE?  

Not only Xfce, I want our resources shared fair among the different

> Just for localized Spins?  

We don't have localized spins ATM and we recently decided to not do any.

> How do you decide these kind of issues?  Do you have some kind of formula you
> would like to propose that would make all contention go away or improve it
> even a little for a large portion of our user/contributor base?

It could be based on popularity. As I'm writing this we have 39017
torrent downloads of the desktop spin, compared to
      * 19556 KDE
      * 7198 LXDE
      * 3588 Xfce

Roughly speaking, for every Xfce download there are
2 LXDE ones
5 KDE ones and 
10 GNOME ones.
This also reflects my personal experience of the requests at events.

Now sharing resources fair and based on our user's needs would mean that
there should be at least *some* of the 1 TB space available for Xfce and
LXDE. Or that we should at least have *some* KDE, Xfce and LXDE media
for promotion. Currently we only have the desktop spin and only GNOME
and KDE available as direct downloads. I don't think this is fair to
both our users and contributors.

> I'm trying very hard to have an actual discussion about issues, but all
> I'm getting out of you is "We need to do better" and "it can't be that
> hard" and "ME TOO".

What do you want to hear from me? Please ask me a precise question and
I'll do my best to answer it.

I'm investing a lot of time in Fedora, currently something between 20
and 25 hours a week. I don't know what more I could do because I don't
have the time and because I'm not to decide on any of these issues. Do
you really expect a constructive statement on things that are not my

So far most of the replies to the issues I raised reached from "We
cannot" to "you must not", but not what I'd call concrete answers. For
example I was told several times that we cannot host two more spins but
so far nobody was able to name numbers.

Sorry if I was a little explosive at the beginning of this discussion. I
hope we can all have constructive discussion and seizable results.
Thanks everybody for getting involved and sharing his/her POV.

> josh


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