Draft Product Description for Fedora Workstation

Alberto Ruiz aruiz at redhat.com
Wed Nov 6 15:33:02 UTC 2013

On Tue, 2013-11-05 at 12:44 -0800, Adam Williamson wrote:
> Haven't read the whole thread yet, but in case it hasn't been said:
> "Build a way" would be great. I've said a few times that it'd be nice
> for there to be a cross-distro framework for third-party app
> distribution.
> "Promote as the Proper Way To Get Apps On GNOME / Fedora Desktop" would
> NOT be great. Having spent a lot of time thinking about both sides of
> the debate I'm still firmly in the 'coherent distribution is the ideal
> state' camp.

And I pretty much agree, read my comments below:

> Upstream distribution is probably never going to go away
> entirely, and it'd be good to make it as painless and reliable as
> possible _where it's really necessary to use it_. But it should never be
> the primary/preferred method of software distribution on Fedora, in my
> opinion. It should always be an exception.

Application sandboxing/bundling is not mutually exclusive with a
coherent system and with keeping control, it's just not an RPM as we
know it. What we need to acknowledge is that delivering integral parts
of the operating system and delivering third party apps are
fundamentally two different things.

So once we have sandboxing we can (and should) propose an end user
application delivery channel for those apps so we will keep control
still. The key here is that the mechanisms to deliver an OS component
and an end user should be different. The cadence _is_ different, as an
example, at the LibreOffice team we have a hell of a time because people
complain about bugs that we already fixed and released on an ongoing
basis. In some cases, people are stuck with a specific version of Fedora
and they simply can't get the latest version of a given app eventhough
the new version doesn't require anything that is provided.

The other problem is that the upstreams don't have a channel to deploy
beta versions, or versions with a specific patch, that you can't install
concurrently because the distributions won't let you.

So all in all, the key here is to acknowledge that a system level
component (systemd, libjpeg, Qt, NetworkManager) has a completely
different nature than an end user application. The upstream has a
different focus, development cadence, nature and intent, and it is
against the interest of the upstreams and the users to keep delivering
those apps as integral parts of the _operating system_.

That doesn't mean that there shouldn't be any sort of integration or
gatkeeping, we must have a centralized Fedora/FOSS app bundle channel
that upstreams can use to "certify' their apps against Fedora, if we use
scriptless rpms and yum repositories as a transport layer, in a
different rpmdb than the system wide one, that is an implementation
detail. But the relationship with the upstream and the cadence should be
completely different than a system level rpm.

> -- 
> Adam Williamson
> Fedora QA Community Monkey
> IRC: adamw | Twitter: AdamW_Fedora | XMPP: adamw AT happyassassin . net
> http://www.happyassassin.net

Alberto Ruiz

More information about the devel mailing list