Linked by Amjith Ramanujam on Sun 21st Sep 2008 06:46 UTC, submitted by Rahul
Linux Greg KH, Linux kernel developer delivered a keynote in the Linux plumbing conference about the health of the ecosystem. His message was essentially that distributions that don't contribute to the ecosystem have to rely on the whims of others which is unhealthy for them. Here is an introduction the development model and some interesting statistics about the Linux kernel code. Update by TH: Rebuttals are appearing all over the web, like this one by Canonical's Matt Zimmerman ("He's refuting a claim which has, quite simply, never been made. [...] When this sort of thing happens on mailing lists, it's called trolling."), or this one by another Canonical employee, Dustin Kirkland.
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RE: This is why I wont use Ubuntu
by DrillSgt on Mon 22nd Sep 2008 00:55 UTC in reply to "This is why I wont use Ubuntu"
DrillSgt
Member since:
2005-12-02

"There are plenty of smaller distros that contribute very little. Trouble is Ubuntu count for a huge percentage of the user base of linux, but they do not contribute to the community as a whole."

This statement makes little sense to me. The community consists of both users and developers, so if they have a huge percentage of the user base, then they contribute hugely to the community. If those users were lost, the community would lose all those people. Contributing to the community does not mean just to send in patches and code. It means bringing in new users, and helping it to grow. Lots of OSS websites proclaim that contributing means using the software and reporting bugs, not necessarily contributing actual code. One such piece of OSS software is the Linux Kernel. With that, I would say Canonical and Ubuntu contribute a great deal to the community, maybe not to the people that seem to require everything to be open, but definitely to the rest of the community.

Reply Parent Score: 3

robgarth Member since:
2006-04-30

Agreed, to an extent. If those developers are developing for Ubuntu, those changes are not going upstream, so they will not be missed. If they are developing for other upstream projects they will simply switch distros, they may not be as happy in another distro, but they will have to switch. So the community still has those developers.

As for bugfixes, if the users are reporting upstream, then they are a huge help. Most will be reporting to Ubuntu, and here is the problem. If the Canonical team don't fix the problem, at least they may submit the bug upstream. But what we see, is that if they do, historically the patch doesn't make it upstream. So the bug still exists for the rest of us anyway.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Keep your bugs
by sakeniwefu on Mon 22nd Sep 2008 04:31 in reply to "RE[2]: This is why I wont use Ubuntu"
sakeniwefu Member since:
2008-02-26

Bug reports are broken for Linux if we have to report to the appropriate package. What if, as is often the case, a program only fails when it is used with another program, window manager, hardware driver, etc?
For a project, tracking a few major distros bug tracking system for problems related to their own software isn't very hard. For users or the distros to specially report the bugs to individual projects, it is.

This rant is basically Enterprise Linux vs Desktop Linux. Red-Hat and friends contribute a lot of code, yes. What you all forget to mention is that it is code THEY and their corporate friends need. It adds 0 value to Linux as a Desktop OS. Ubuntu could run just as well on kFreeBSD(if the Debian port was still alive) or Minix. Shuttleworth chose Linux because hardware manufacturers are more likely to contribute drivers to it because of the license and the pressure from the Enterprise Linux world.

Edited 2008-09-22 04:33 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3