Concerning Debian and ArchLinux

John G Heim jheim at
Mon Aug 1 18:08:09 UTC 2016

You don't have to reinstall to upgrade a debian system from one stable 
release to the next. Sometimes the upgrade does fail and rarely, this 
can have disasterous results. So make a backup first. You can also do 
continuous upgrades by running the testing release instead of the stable 
release of debian. Even that isn't entirely without risk as a nightly or 
weekly upgrade might break something. But I would imagine arch has that 
problem too because it's caused by linux package developers not being 
perfect. If you don't want to go through the massive upgrade every 2 
years from one stable debian release to the next, I'd recommend you try 
the debian testing release and do nightly upgrades. That name "testing" 
is really a misnomer. It's not like this stuff hasn't been tested. And 
you could say that everything is in the process of being tested.  The 
distinction between a stable and a testing package is rather ill-defined.

Here at the Math Department at the University Of Wisconsin, I switched 
our workstations over from debian stable to ubuntu short time support or 
STS. A new release of ubuntu STS comes out every 6 months. Then I do 
upgrades in January and July when the students are gone. Ubuntu has a 
release upgrader program for doing upgrades.

On 08/01/2016 12:18 PM, John J. Boyer wrote:
> That is the latest stable version of Debian? I am curently using Jessie.
> I like the idea of ArchLinux, because it never requires re-installation.
> Why don't the other distros take a similar approach? However, i don't
> want to start with the bare-bones installation that is downloadable. I
> would like one that includes brltty, internet access and the package
> manager.
> Thanks,
> John

John G. Heim; jheim at; sip://

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