How many users does Fedora have?

Pierre-Yves Chibon pingou at
Mon Dec 1 12:13:06 UTC 2014

On Mon, Dec 01, 2014 at 01:05:46PM +0100, Reindl Harald wrote:
> Am 01.12.2014 um 12:57 schrieb Pierre-Yves Chibon:
> >On Mon, Dec 01, 2014 at 12:38:24PM +0100, Reindl Harald wrote:
> >>Am 01.12.2014 um 12:36 schrieb Alec Leamas:
> >>>On 01/12/14 12:29, Reindl Harald wrote:
> >>>>
> >>>>Am 01.12.2014 um 12:26 schrieb Alec Leamas:
> >>>
> >>>>>Lets face it: I envy those who can measure the usage from a download
> >>>>>counter or so. Can we have something similar?
> >>>>
> >>>>no - you have no clue which mirror was used without explicit tracking in
> >>>>YUM/DNF and given the noise about the recent Firefox changes you won't
> >>>>even consider seriously tracking inside the distribution
> >>>>
> >>>>additionally downloads are meaningless - many setups with more than one
> >>>>machine have their local mirrors and a download can be 1, 10 or 50
> >>>>installed instances
> >>>
> >>>I hesitated when writing my initial message, didn't include this:
> >>>
> >>>Feedback why this is impossible isn't really helpful here, most of us
> >>>are aware of the limitations. Given that we agree on the overall goals
> >>>(?), useful input is what can be done, and how
> >>
> >>it is helpful because the fact it is impossible will shutdown that
> >>discussion because - well, it's impossible
> >
> >The question becomes, is any numbers better than no number?
> >
> >In theory, we could get an idea of how much a package is downloaded. Mirror are
> >syncing all the content, so they introduce a baseline while user is what
> >introduce the variability.
> >So if we were to be able to gather logs from a) the main repos + b) some
> >volunteer repos, we could get a trend.
> >The number would of course not be exact as you mentioned but we could get an
> >idea, something like: we have 132 mirrors and my package was downloaded 133
> >times, which potentially means there is one user (me) using that package.
> >There might be more, but if no-one ever reports a bug and we see the number of
> >download is basically equal to the number of mirrors, we can get an impression
> >that this package isn't used by many people.
> >
> >So we come back to the question: is any number better than no number at all?
> >Even to get a trend?
> no number is in fact better than wrong numbers backed by nothing beause they
> lead in wrong conclusions - your 122/133 numbers could in reality also be
> 1000 users installed them from mirrors and your calculation is the best
> example for wrong assumptions

Well statistically, if 1000 users download the package, some will hint the main
mirrors, or there is a big geographic skew in the data (which is also possible
of course).

> you don't have 132 downloads because 132 mirrors
> in fact you have *zero* - mirrors are done with rsync

So the baseline is even easier to determine :)

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