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Re: Michael's FUD (Was: Fragen zu Synaptic)

On Sun, 13 Jun 2004 04:21:31 +0200 (CEST), Dag Wieers wrote:

> I'm sorry to post in English, I can understand a bit of German, but sadly 
> I cannot express myself in German very well. My English is somewhat 
> better, although I would have prefered to do this in Dutch.

First of all, I believe that "a bit of German" is not sufficient to
understand the thread on fedora-list-de correctly. "A bit of German" is
rather vague, but if it means that you skip some words or don't know their
exact meaning in special context, that can result in severe

> I just discovered the 'Fragen zu Synaptic' thread and feel I deserve the 
> right to answer Michael's new FUD. (And some of the FUD I've seen on the 
> official Fedora channels in the past months).

I feel honoured that you don't mention my lastname in your message at all
and crosspost the message to a list which I'm not subscribed to and
another list where there are lots of other Michaels and where hardly
anyone has read the thread on the German list (which is a month old by
now, btw).

> I don't mind Michael recruting people to help out the fedora.us project, 

What does this refer to?

> the more people helping out, the better. What I do mind is that he has to 
> trash other projects (3rd party repos) in doing so.

Where exactly do I "trash other projects"?

Am I the bad guy already because--like some other users--I do recommend
fedora.us and rpm.livna.org only? I don't use any of the 3rd party
repositories, so I cannot recommend them. Mixing 3rd party repositories
with fedora.us/rpm.livna.org results in problems, as can be read in the
average message board where users seek for help with broken dependencies
or non-working multimedia packages.

But frequently I point to www.fedoratracker.org, which is an index of your
repository, too, and hence does advertize your packages, too.

> When Michael says my RPM collection is a work of only one person, he is 
> wrong.

> What Michael means is that 1 person is doing the actual packaging/signing. 

Which is what I've written. A single individual packaging hundreds of
packages and releasing new packages (upgrades of packages in Fedora Core
even!) without an open QA/Testing process.

> Unfortunately, because of the repeated FUD about the 3rd party 
> repositories, some news articles took over the same message spreading the 
> FUD even further, which is obviously harming these 3rd party projects.

Which news articles? 

You write it as if the article authors don't have an own opinion, but have
been fooled by what they have picked up somewhere. Do consider the
possibility that article authors are open-minded and look behind the

>   + fedora.us is (and has been) forking packages from 3rd party 
>     repositories (I don't mind, although I'd like to be informed of 
>     improvements when they do).

That's something you could arrange if you talked to the respective
packager. The number of spec files in fedora.us which contain your name
somewhere in the changelog is small. It's possible that someone started
with one of your packages, but during early package development changed
the spec file completely and should have dropped old changelog entries.

>   + fedora.us likes to stress that you cannot use other repositories with 
>     theirs. They say it isn't possible. They are right, it isn't possible 
>     because they don't want too.

Fedora.us builds upon Fedora Core and itself only. When 3rd party
repositories upgrade Fedora Core, this breaks dependencies and/or results
in untested configurations. Additionally, repositories upgrade eachother
due to competing version/release numbering schemes. Or they conflict with
eachother due to different package naming guidelines.

>     It's a protectionist measure from the 
>     days that they had few packages and needed resources. It is in 
>     fact possible to make all repositories compatible by investing in
>     communication and working together.

It's not as simple, unfortunately. People on fedora-devel fedora us
mailing-list have spent months on discussing the preparation and roadmap
of a community packaging project. A few repository maintainers never
wanted more than inter-repository guidelines, so since day one fedora.us
had fundamentally different goals.

>   + Michael likes to stress that we cannot possibly have quality packages 
>     because we have that many packages compared to fedora.us.

Almost true. Except that if ripped out of context, you put rather strongly
worded words into my mouth.  And you neglect the possibility that packages
are improved after release (which I do point out), based on feedback by
users who run into problems and who take the time to submit bug reports.

In one message board (don't remember its name of the top of my head),
someone described the difference between the release-cycle of fedora.us
and 3rd party repositories like this:

  fedora.us : new package -> fix, fix, fix, fix -> release
  3rd party : new package -> release -> fix -> release -> fix -> release -> ...

Which seems to hit the nail on the head. Though, nowhere do I claim that
this is true for every package. 

>     What he 
>     fails to mention is that fedora.us is fairly young compared to 
>     other repositories and during the inception months and the many 
>     arguments later, the other repositories grew faster. fedora.us is just 
>     catching up.

Because it's easier for a single individual to pipe out new packages as
soon as they seem to rpmbuild and let any users deal with the first series
of bugs/problems/flaws. There's no guarantee, however, that the community
is willing to serve as guinea pigs.

> I would like to ask Michael and others to talk about fedora.us's merits
> without FUDing other projects.

I do not "FUD other projects".
> If Michael, Warren or anyone else happens to find something that can be 
> improved in my packages or wrt. compatibility I would appreciate if you 
> Cc: me so that I don't have to find out in the archives or via my 
> referer-log.

For incompatibilities to be looked into and to be resolved, someone needs
to discover them first and then take the time to file bug reports.

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