What Fedora makes sucking for me - or why I am NOT Fedora

Josh Boyer jwboyer at gmail.com
Thu Dec 11 03:28:48 UTC 2008

On Thu, Dec 11, 2008 at 04:04:55AM +0100, Ralf Corsepius wrote:
>>  As for the others, I came
>> to the startling realization that I don't use any of the other 3 packages
>> at all because I generally either have no use for them or found them to
>> be buggy in the past and gave up on them (like evolution).
>Well, these had just been examples ... I could easily extend this
>list :(
>> Which is sort of an agreement with you in some regards.  However I also
>> think one needs to keep in mind that for the majority of packages Fedora
>> gets what upstream delivers.
>Right, but blindly relying on upstreams is not of much help either.
>Instead, package maintainers, testers and rel-engs can not avoid to
>build up opinions of their own and to compromise. This may mean to skip
>one or more upstream release, to modify it, or ... in extreme cases,
>even to abandon a package.

Yes.  But that is again mostly package maintainers.  There is a level of
trust that needs to be there, otherwise the project doesn't scale and
the package set will be trimmed down to 'stuff that the small set of
people that compose the QA and rel-eng groups can test themselves'.

>The really problematic cases however are those in which developer and
>user perception on a packager/upstream's quality diverge and those in
>which political/economical motives or wishful thinking overrule obvious
>>   Fortunately, most of the upstreams we have
>> seem to be pretty good about fixing bugs as they are found.  QA can't find
>> them all, and I think your efforts here show exactly _why_ we need people
>> like you doing the bug reporting you are.
>Hmm, all I actually do is to report what I stumble over when using the
>OS or when working with components the OS consists of. This works fine,
>as long as bugs are being fixed in reasonable time frames and not pushed

You would be surprised at how many people don't bother.  So thanks.

>> >Wrt. rel-eng:
>> >
>> >Besides the numerous NEVR issues between Fedora release, which FC10 (as
>> >usual) suffers from, this time another kind of repo screw up took place:
>> NEVR issues not getting caught are due to two things:  1) package maintainers
>> not paying attention, and 2) the lack of dep and upgrade path checking in
>> bodhi.
>> I don't know why that happened.  My best guess would be something like:
>> "An update was staged and then something happened that caused a newer
>> package to be pulled into the final release.  The maintainer forgot
>> about the pending update."
>> Again, no real clue though.
>My explanation: rel-eng has lost focus on the real issues.

I wouldn't put it that way.  There is no lack of focus on NEVR and dep
issues.  There is simply a lack of time in the day for the people
involved.  So they work on it when they have time, like most of us do
with Fedora contributions.

>Or more direct: Why haven't they developed a set of tools related to
>detect packaging issues, such as NEVR conflicts, throughout all the
>years Fedora is around?

They have actually.  The results are published quite often and the tools
are located in the rel-eng repo.  They just have to be run.

Though again, this needs to be done before the repos are created, not
after.  Work is on-going here.

>> >>  Do you have bug report numbers, regression cases,
>> >> or any sort of data saying things are getting worse from a release
>> >> stability perspective?
>> >> 
>> >> I'm not saying you're wrong, but statements without facts are hard
>> >> to swallow.  If we're sucking it up, point us to where and how so
>> >> things can be fixed.  I have F10 on a number of machines and it's
>> >> working fine, so my personal experience may be different than yours.
>> >Let me put it this way: I have been running machines equipped with FC10
>> >since ca. Beta2, and am busy filing bugs since then. I haven't been
>> >bookkeeping, but it's in the order of 0.5-1 per day.
>> 0.5-1 per day after release, or as an average over the time since Beta2?
>The later. It has been more or less a constant flow of 3-4 new BZs at
>average per week. So far, without any tendency to decrease or increase.


>> Also, across a subset of packages or just in random things as you hit
>> them?
>Most of them are "random things" I trip over when using/trying to us
>packages as "ordinary user".


>> I know you aren't keeping track, but data like that would be useful to
>> indentify bug trends and problem packages. 
>Well, with previous releases, I feel there had been a clear tendency: 
>Initial releases (the CDs/DVDs) had been almost unusable. After ca. 4-8
>weeks of lifetime, when most major packages in Fedora had at least been
>replaced once, Fedora had matured into a shape one could recommend to
>use it.

I've not had that experience, but my usecases are pretty limited and I
tend to lag a bit behind the release GA and when I actually install it.

>>  I'm not asking you to actually
>> go answer those questions, but it's something the bug zappers could think
>> about.
>IMO, the bug zappers are a problem of their own, I should better not
>comment on at this point in time.

s/bug zappers/anyone that likes statistical data mining ;)


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