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leaving fedora


I am leaving fedora (though not EPEL), and since I have been quite
vocal in the last months, I thought it would deserve some explanation.
All that follows is highly subjective, and I don't think it
should lead to much discussion, and since it is very subjective, I
won't give names or facts to prove what I say, these are my feelings.

My use case is old non desktop stuff, fluxbox, xdm, vim, xterms,
mutt, irssi, firefox, latex/texinfo, xfig, xpdf, numerical models,
openoffice (because I have to). Fedora is unsuitable for me as a user
since quite a long time, too much regressions, lack of interest for
integrating what I use (xdm, no vfs daemon...) too short lived.
But I still used it as a contributor, one of the aim being to help
testing regressions and integrating oldish environment such that
people in my case don't have to go through the workarounds I had to
use in rawhide to have their setup working, while still benefiting
from progress in free software (new hardware support, new
frameworks...), in fedora and in RHEL+EPEL.

The cost of running rawhide (or a rawhide/stable mix), has always
been high, but it was ok, as the price for testing and being in
touch with latest innovations. However I have clearly seen now,
that the benefits are negligible. Many other maintainers, and
especially many important people in fedora lead don't care about
my use case and my bugs and patches get unanswered for months or
years, the local fixes I have don't get propagated to other users,
or maintainers refuse to support what I want. I don't blame the
maintainers, supporting my use case has a cost, and even if I am
ready to pay a part, it may still be too high for Fedora.

I also feel that I have become a stranger to the fedora community.
In the past it seems that power users like me, that is people who
like the desktop for others but not for themselves, and like simple
oldish UNIX stuff, were much more present, now it seems to me that
only a tiny (but very vocal...) minority remains. One thing that
really disturbed me was the latest FESCo election, I only voted
for one candidate, who was not elected. People in current FESCo
are nice and capable, indeed, but they don't represent me, and it
was very different in the past.

In the latest months, I remarked that most of the discussions
I was involved in here turned to flamewars and in the end my
wishes and solutions were always disregarded. Otherwise said I
have become a noise maker, certainly impairing communication
within the fedora project, and making everybody lose time for no

Lastly, I think that, on the packaging side, my wishes are
fulfilled since there are now many alternate desktops (or window
managers...) and all the display mananger I know about are
in fedora, and correctly integrated at the packaging level.
I also have all the command-line interfaces I want. Integration
didn't happen though, and I now think that fedora isn't the place
where it can happen.

I really enjoyed all this time in the Fedora project, and I learned
a lot, too. Last, I wish Fedora to be succesful, I think that Fedora 
is very useful for the advance of free software, and I thank the 
Fedora users and contributors, and RedHat support.


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