Steve McIntyre knew he faced a huge task when he took on the job of Debian project leader nearly six months ago. But he didn't reckon on the scandal of a major security bug, followed by a massive clear-up operation within a few days of taking over. As if this wasn't enough McIntyre also faced a backlog of approvals for new …
Less volunteer time
I can attest that volunteers have less time, at least in my case. I'm trying to buy a house during these tough times and I have had to knuckle down and focus on the work that actually pays. I wasn't making any major contributions to open source before but it all counts. At least I'm still managing to get some work-related improvements out there like patches for Ruby on Rails.
Debian should make some serious money with 'Licensed for Debian' badges
I would suggest that Debian makes money by selling 'Licensed for Debian' badges.
When we look to buy servers we generally use HP because they are very supportive of Debian. However, due to costings we sometimes get other brands.
Whenever we look to buy a particular model we have to do the 'Will it run Debian' searching around. For example - I've bought a Fujitsu Seimens today - and had to check a possible NIC driver issue.
What I suggest is that FS should send a server to Debian for authentication. Debian could then check that the server will install Debian stable and all hardware runs properly. If it passes then FS would be able to apply a 'Certified with Debian' logo and pay for a sticker for each machine.
This could also apply to other bits of kit like RAID cards, gigabit NIC cards etc
I'd love to be able to go to online stores and be able to easily select kit which I know will work with Debian - surely it will be worth it to the manufacturers to get some extra sales.
Open Source is fortunately one of those things where the only thing to balance is time. If people have the time then that is what needs to be put into the many projects.
The fortune of open source is time, not money, so when such times come around, it seems to be able to balance out. The trouble is though is that people who before who may have been more willing to help out on non-paid work will now need to focus on paid work to make sure that they can afford to live.
Debian has been my distro of choice since Etch went stable. I was a solid Mandrake user from 6.0 until 10.1 (after which their quality had tanked so hard I couldn't stand it anymore). Some other distros were OK (Sabayon, SuSE before they joined forces with Satan, Xandros, SimplyMEPIS was a strong contender), while others made my teeth itch ([K]Ubuntu, Gentoo, Slackware). Then I thought if the one I liked (Mepis) and the one that's most popular (Ubuntu) were both Debian derivatives, why not try the original? Etch had just gone stable a few days prior to me installing it, and I liked the system that it set up. I've been using it ever since. Sure, there are one or two odd things that I have to work around (mostly in the scanner department), but I'm happy with my choice.
Best of luck to Mr. McIntyre and all the Debian developers/volunteers. I hope Lenny improves on a great distro.
Just return to their roots
Debian (a derivative of the Gentoo Linux distribution), can always just feed off the other open source projects.
Open source has always been in demand, that's the unix tradition, it is much simpler not to be restricted by the GPL though to build software on.
It's the Best
I've used Debian since Woody and it's great. Stable is stable and if it's not modern enough for you there is always testing/sid.
There are probably more distros based on Debian than anything else because it's such a fantastic base to build from.
I'm already running Lenny and it's great and my family will be upgraded from Etch to Lenny this autumn - which should fix some things for them and add some extra stuff for them.
I'd have to agree that some big firms like HP should put in a bit more effort - they are clearly making more from Debian than Debian is from Debian... Debian* is the only viable alternative to Red Hat or Novell and it needs feeding.
* By which I mean Debian and Debian derivatives such as Ubuntu.
... roots AC above...
Gentoo started in 1999
Debian history says:
"The Debian Project was officially founded by Ian Murdock on August 16th, 1993. At that time, the whole concept of a "distribution" of Linux was new. "
Fact-checking is less common than it should be,
Most OS development is paid work
The great majority of software is developed for motives other than to sell packaged software. Unless it is intended to be sold as such, it generally makes sense to develop it within the context of an open source community. This improves the quality and cuts the costs of what the organisation requiring the development knows it needs and is willing to pay for anyway. Recent surveys of who contributes what to recent Linux kernel releases prove that most of those working on it are paid to do so. This doesn't take away the motivation for much valuable additional volunteer contribution, but generally the best developers of an open source product are its keenest users.
"Debian (a derivative of the Gentoo Linux distribution)" not sure what planet you've been living on, but Debian has nothing to do with Gentoo. Debian has been around since 1993, and Gentoo was first released about 9 years later.
How about Works for GNU+Linux badges... that way we simply get the benefit of it working with any system that uses a particular version of the kernel...
Presumably Tory Story is about a group of unbelievable characters you've never heard of, lead by a plastic-faced man.