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Re: Fedora Life Cycle

On 10/23/2007 04:17 AM, jkeating wrote:
On Mon, 22 Oct 2007 18:58:01 -0400
William Cattey <wdc MIT EDU> wrote:

How can use cases for hardware available now, requiring a few critical apps needing to be ported now be accommodated? Neither Enterprise nor Fedora fits well enough at the present time.

RHEL regularly enables new hardware in the quarterlyish updates.  You
aren't stuck with two year old hardware sets.

We are kind of getting away with the list topic, but FWIW, I've bought - more like an experimental playground - three boxes based on Asus M2N-MX motherboards (el cheapo entry-level nVidia Corporation MCP61 + nVidia Corporation GeForce 6100 nForce 430 graphics controller). I had a hell of a time trying to make those work in Centos 4 and 5. (Yes, I know I could pay $$$$ for a special contract and have a dedicated team implement whatever I need, or that I could look over the HCL before buying. And I also know most of what "enterprise" mean, including in terms of hardware. That's not the point for the below lines.) In C4 it was impossible to start the installer, no matter what options we've tried (however, the box kind of worked OK after I moved the hard disk to another computer, do the install and transfer the disk back). In C5 it was more than funny to observe how the box would come up with a different MAC address after every reboot (until the network driver available on NVidia's site was used). After that, it took us half an hour to fiddle with xorg.conf to configure the display settings for a Samsung 17" TFT display (*-config-display failed with trumpets in generating a functional config). Finally we gave up fiddling and before throwing the box thru the balcony's window we switched to the NVidia proprietary driver. We haven't yet been able to make the box not lock if USB is enabled in BIOS & sound is still not functional, I still have to backport a newer alsa rpm. The irony is that replacing the CRT monitor with a TFT (and creating the new xorg.conf) was much easier in C4 than in C5.

OTOH, F7 worked almost like a breeze on the same hardware. Except for video: once again I had to fiddle directly with xorg.conf adding a custom Modeline, otherwise the image was shifted 5" to the right and 1" narrower. And funniest of all, after making everything work (or so I thought) and having the exact setup I wanted after rebooting in runlevel 7 with Gnome as Desktop Environment, in the very moment I selected KDE and logged in as regular user, the image shifted again 5" to the right, as if I did not setup the video at all. Go figure...

Bottom line, lots of people do lots of work, but for _recent_ hardware there still are steps to be performed. And even with the efforts put in their quarterly updates, I would say RHEL lags an year behind hardware that is available in the street. And as someone who started learning linux by using RH 4.2, I am sad to say it, but I feel that other distros (hint: knoppix/ubuntu) cope better with this aspect.

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