Linked by Eugenia Loli on Tue 16th Nov 2004 21:18 UTC, submitted by Witek
Slackware, Slax It was revealed that recent lack of updates of Slackware -Current has been caused by Patrick Volkerding's serious dicease. Read more at here. Pat asks for help.
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Somebody want to post the text here?
by Darius on Tue 16th Nov 2004 21:21 UTC

Seems that the FTP site is a little busy.

RE: Somebody want to post the text here?
by Jon on Tue 16th Nov 2004 21:24 UTC

No, don't post it here, because there is a limit of 8k chars, his message won't fit. Just get it from Slashdot's comment section, it was posted there.

RE: somebody want to post the text here?
by Peter on Tue 16th Nov 2004 21:29 UTC

It's mirrored at the OSU Open-Source Lab's site:

Oh poor guy...
by Cypress on Tue 16th Nov 2004 21:41 UTC

I REALLY hope he gets better. I'll keep my fingers crossed Pat (and I'm not just saying that). That's all I can help with.

by anyone on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:04 UTC

Wishing ya all the Best !
All I really wanted for x-mas was 10.1

That's a tough situation
by Max Brand on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:07 UTC

I hope he gets through this all right.

re-post OK?
by stopdabombing on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:14 UTC

I wonder if it will be OK to re-post the plea for help from Pat elsewhere? I subscribe to a list of medical researchers and health/nutrition folks, and there are some extremely smart folks involved in biosciences there. However, I don't want to commit any privacy mistakes etc. What do you folks think? Is it OK to repost? Thanks in advance.

Please get better Pat
by DnA on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:17 UTC

I'm really wishing you the best Pat, it hurts just to think about what you gone through while draging around on this terrible thing ;)

Take care

RE: re-post OK?
by ArturNT on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:25 UTC

I think it is okay, considering that he posted this and wanted it to be /.ed.

RE: Somebody want to post the text here?
by Rover on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:28 UTC

I really hope you get better Pat. Slackware's been my favourite Linux distribution for the last 3-4 years.
All the best (and thanks to Google, you can find almost anything on there)

by Chris on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:42 UTC

The people on slashdot make me so mad sometimes. No one ever reads the articles, and then they make broad statements. You know, several people called Pat an idiot on there.
I truely hope he starts feeling better, and continues to research and suggest things to his doctor.
I'm not sure about his little granules thing though, I know I've had them as an athsmatic when I get a really bad chest cold (READ: when I'm lying on the couch suffocating for two days).

Mein Gott!!
by Anonymous on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:51 UTC

Do I see/read that right? He can't get the proper threatment because he is not insured?

When I read some thing like this, then I am so happy to live in Switzerland.

by Evert on Tue 16th Nov 2004 22:54 UTC

the way he did "feel" it would come from his dental dust... great intuition!

the main linux distro i use is slackware. I really hope the best for Pat!

v Act of God
by Tyr on Tue 16th Nov 2004 23:00 UTC
Best Wishes
by JCooper on Tue 16th Nov 2004 23:29 UTC

Pat, if you read this comments page, may I wish you all the best and a speedy recovery from what you are experiencing. I doubt many of us can imagine the level of pain you must be enduring. On behalf of all Slackware fanatics, good luck and please keep the concerned among us posted with your progress.

rm -f *white*bits*

Go to the Mayo Clinic
by snorkel on Tue 16th Nov 2004 23:36 UTC

Don't dink around, go to the Mayo clinic in Minnesota

may the force be with you
by SwSh on Tue 16th Nov 2004 23:43 UTC

I wish you the best to get well Pat! I hope you'll have a nice xmas without worries. (I know, one month to go, but still...)

I wish him as well all the best
by Anonymous on Tue 16th Nov 2004 23:49 UTC

I hope, he will get well soon. Having 4 years those pains is unbelivable!

All the best to you Patrick.

Go to a good hospital
by Metro on Wed 17th Nov 2004 00:29 UTC

I now that all the fans from Slackware will pay the treatment.

I have Mayo Clinic as a wonderful hospital.

I hope you can win this:)

Good Luck!
by Kaspar on Wed 17th Nov 2004 00:32 UTC

I hope you get well soon Pat.. hang in there!

Anyone for boycotting these toothbrushes?
by ChiJoan on Wed 17th Nov 2004 02:33 UTC

God bless you Pat and a speedy recovery. I can't believe they didn't think of these vapors causing infection in the body. We all know tooth decay, etc. untreated can cause tons of problems in the body. It's lucky you can take Penicillin, as I am. Know any good lawyers? I smell a lawsuit coming on in the end.


chmod a+x Pat
by X on Wed 17th Nov 2004 03:12 UTC

Get well.

best wishes
by Andrei Oprisan on Wed 17th Nov 2004 03:14 UTC

get well soon, Pat!

best wishes,
Andrei Oprisan

Slackware page ...
by Darius on Wed 17th Nov 2004 04:09 UTC

I wonder why they haven't posted this on the Slackware homepage?

RE: Anonymous from Switzerland
by Clinton on Wed 17th Nov 2004 05:02 UTC

Do I see/read that right? He can't get the proper threatment because he is not insured?

I read the whole thing, but I don't recall reading that part. As far as I can remember, he was unable to get diagnosed because of the odd nature of the infection. The problem was the diagnosis, not the treatment. I could be wrong though. He may find on Friday that the infectious disease MD will agree with him and they'll start treating him right away? I don't know.

When I read some thing like this, then I am so happy to live in Switzerland.

I understand your sentiment, but I lived in a country with socialized medicine before for three years and I don't think that style of medical care solves anything (and makes things worse in some instances).

I found the medical competency of many socialized doctors to be lacking. You also had the problem of everybody going to the doctor for minor sniffles and hangnails so the wait to see a doctor was usually quite long.

Also, if you had to be admitted into a hospital, you'd better hope it wasn't in the summer. They turn off the air-conditioning at six or seven o'clock at night to cut costs.

I've lived with both styles of healthcare, and so far I like the American way better; although I have to admit it seems to be going downhill at a pretty good rate.

By the way, where I live in America, if you go into the hospital with a life threatening problem, they have to treat you by law whether you can pay for it or not.

I know what he's going through
by Morgan on Wed 17th Nov 2004 06:02 UTC

I've been through pain like that before, and now, nine years later, I'd rather be burned alive than go through it again. I had what was considered a fairly common and treatable form of cancer, but I didn't know I had it until it had spread to my lungs, stomach and back. By the time I stopped ignoring the tumor, I had pneumonia, I couldn't eat, and every ten seconds it felt like someone was kicking me in the small of my back. I finally went to the doctor, and immediately went into surgery. After the tumor was removed, I was given chemotherapy for about five months. After I started to regain my strength and weight, I began to notice the consequences of finding the cancer almost too late. My lungs function at about 60% of a normal, healthy pair, so I tire easily. My digestive system is a bit out of whack; I can't eat some foods that I used to love (spicy and vinegary foods mostly), and I've been having fairly bad back pain for a while now. All because I ignored what I thought was harmless swelling resulting from a fall. My doctor said that if I had gone to the hospital when the swelling first started, I probably could have avoided most of the pain.

Why am I writing all of this? I hope that it will open the eyes of anyone out there who, like me (and Pat), chose to ignore pain or other abnormal physical phenomena. My brother is a medical lab tech, and he talks about homeostasis. Basically, when your body is operating normally, you will feel fine. Conversely, when something is not right with your body you will notice a change, usually (but not always) in the form of pain. Anytime you have pain or discomfort or you spot an abnormality on your body that you can't rule out as a direct result of an accident or mishap, please see your doctor immediately! It could save your life.

RE: Anonymous from Switzerland
by dpi on Wed 17th Nov 2004 07:12 UTC

You also had the problem of everybody going to the doctor for minor sniffles and hangnails so the wait to see a doctor was usually quite long.

To each his/her own. At least in NL (don't know about EU), the waiting queue is decreasing right now, but that queue is mostly in hospitals (e.g. for surgery) which is unrelated to queues at 'home doctors' (the 'first line' where people who have near to nothing or nothing are 'caught' already). Health insurance coverage also lowered because of cost reducings/savings from the government (i'm not sure if there's a correlation). The people who go for every minor sniffle basically disadvantage both themselves as well as others. When you don't use your insurrance, you pay less the next time you have to pay (e.g. monthly). When you do use it, you start over again at Start thus every discount you build up is lost. Also, not all costs are covered. Plus, they have to pay, after that they get money from the insurrance. So those who go for every minor sniffle disavantage not only others, but also themselves. Some people prefer to know what they have rather than a cure; thats the psychologic effect of being insured. Its a coin with 2 sides though.

I went to East-Europe this summer. About 1 to 2 days after i got back, i had a soar throat with unusual amounts of slime production (every 5 minute i had to couch). Eating hurt, drinking hurt, smoking hurt intensely. I barely ate, barely drunk, but did take my normal dose vitamin pills. Now, that wasn't that bad, but after this went on for about a week with getting worse the last 1 - 2 days the situation changed. I could barely breath because of the intense pain and the slime. I managed to breath by breathing very slow (which would otherwise be 'silent breathing'). I could not eat. Drinking hurt intensely. The catch-22 of not smoking was more than worth it. I was able to live a few hours a day but i was too tired to do much during that. Basically, i slept and slept for 3 days. Sometimes i was half awake in my bed. One day i slept 18 hours straight. I had the feeling i slept for 1,5 day though. After those ~ 3 days it went slightly and slightly better. In the end i had the same symptons in my nose, but my throat at least went better. In total it took 3 weeks to be fully cured, but the last week was not very painful. The only thing i drunk during the worst periods was camille tea, and loads of it. Tranquilisers didn't help because while they did mitigate the pain a bit, i could not sleep when i used them and my heart went boom. Imagine being in that state while barely being able to breath. During the worst days, the psychologic effect was there too, because i did not knew what disease i had and was barely able to breath. And i still don't know what i had or if it'll ever return.

Bottomline? I should have tried to get to a doctor or called a doctor to come when i was barely able to breath because i both physically as well as mentally got teared apart by this. Luckily, the worst days were only 3 days and apparently it wasn't deadly, it magically went away, but it makes one feel so much better to know what illness they got, approx. when it'll be cured, to know the body gets proper help from outside when it can't handle itself.

I'm not to overdramatizing it though. Patrick's symptons are far, far worse than mine (e.g. the fact there hasn't been a proper diagnosis after several consults, 'sulfur granule' possibilities, fact it has been going on for years). Morgan has also been into more agony and i agree with his opinion. Pat's problem is unrelated to insurrance given he doesn't ask for money and went to all kind of doctors already. Someone here commented the people on Slashdot make him mad. Pat specifically asked for help from Slashdot, and perhaps rightfully so, because there are specialists from all kind of science/tech grounds over there, including medical-inclined. I read ~all the +3 comments, including those from doctors, and there were quite a lot insightful and informative posts around (personally i expected more 'funny' posts...). Clinics where he can go to (Mayo Clinic got named a few times). Some possible diseases he has. Some experiences. Based on his story and these posts its painfully obvious that he must find a doctor specialised in bacterial diseases (IV) ASAP because he has been walking with this for a few years now. Sounds plaussible, doesn't it? His problem was that he didn't get in contact with the right people even though he thought (or appears to think) he was and he waffled it away (the opposite of what Clinton says people do in 'socialized' countries). The time of evading the problem hopefully comes to an end in a positive way now. I hope he takes the (contributing) advices he gets on Slashdot serious. Good luck Pat..

by Val on Wed 17th Nov 2004 08:09 UTC

I think we (who can't help with an medical advice) can only pray the lord!
I really wish that pat will get better in some weeks and i really wish that it wasn't his last post.

by rnt on Wed 17th Nov 2004 09:23 UTC

I hope you will be better in the future, Pat...

Get well soon.
by yannick on Wed 17th Nov 2004 10:23 UTC

I really hope Volkerding will get better very soon.

v Hmmm...nice...but problematic...
by mini-me on Wed 17th Nov 2004 14:06 UTC
v scratch that....
by mini-me on Wed 17th Nov 2004 14:07 UTC
by Anonymous on Wed 17th Nov 2004 14:17 UTC

Maybe when he gets better, he'll have the energy to care about GNOME again. Either way, I hope he gets better soon.

may the force be with you
by noom on Wed 17th Nov 2004 16:56 UTC

really mean it,
I pray for you Pat,

may -all- the forces be with you
by Rho on Wed 17th Nov 2004 17:01 UTC

Good luck. Although, hopefully you'll get some good medical treatment and not need any luck, it still doesn't hurt to have it. Here, *hands you some luck* take mine for today. You need it more than I do.

let's pray
by Barry on Thu 18th Nov 2004 00:39 UTC

Let's pray he will get better soon.

my prayers
by Anonymous on Thu 18th Nov 2004 03:30 UTC

Slackware was my first linux distribution back in the 90's.
My prayers for his recovery and good health.

Get well soon
by chowyunpat on Thu 18th Nov 2004 07:29 UTC


I have never used Slackware and I may never use it, but as a person who almost died from severe respiratory problems, I am glad to hear that you finally have a diagnosis and that you are getting treatment. It was painful to read your account and it's something I wouldnt wish on my worst enemy and your account was similar to mine, in that I put off treatment for at least 2 years, despite the urgings of friends and family to go see a doctor, but your condition is a lot more severe than my was and your fortunate and so are we that you didnt wait too much longer to get treatment.

I wish you well in your recovery and hope your life gets back to normal soon. I just started using Linux recently and Im supportive of any form of Linux or open source OS even though I may never use it and I only hope the best for you and the Slackware community.

by Anonymous on Thu 18th Nov 2004 08:39 UTC

Re: Swiss health care. I lived there and can assure you that their health care system is second none. They have fantastic hospitals equipped with cutting edge tecnology. BTW - Switzerland is not a socialist country - They have a direct democracy where people ha a say on very aspect of live through referendums and initiatives.

Jesus is the only one who can help you.
Pro 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
Pro 3:6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Mat 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Mat 11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

RE: let's pray
by slack boogie on Thu 18th Nov 2004 13:22 UTC

Yes, let's do it!! Slackware is a diamond distro
and I wish Pat all the best!

GET well soon!
by East Canada on Thu 18th Nov 2004 16:51 UTC

Hope Pat can recover soon! All best wishes here!