Linked by Jordan Spencer Cunningham on Mon 11th Jan 2010 15:57 UTC
Original OSNews Interviews A few weeks ago, we asked for the OSNews community to help with some questions we were going to ask Aaron Griffin from the Arch Linux team, and the response was glorious and somewhat phenomenal. We added those questions to our own and sent them on over, and then we were surprised by receiving not only Aaron Griffin's responses but answers from various individuals from the team.
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updates well tested ??
by sanjos on Mon 11th Jan 2010 18:09 UTC
sanjos
Member since:
2006-04-24

I am archer myself and I have a question, how do i ensure that latest updates are well tested and won't break my system ? With a rolling-release, before you could fix something the next release/update is out and it could still be broken.. the point is, arch is not meant for someone who cannot fix issues for themselves. How different is arch from say debian testing/sid in terms of what to expect when one upgrades his/her system??

Reply Score: 2

RE: updates well tested ??
by license_2_blather on Mon 11th Jan 2010 18:29 in reply to "updates well tested ??"
license_2_blather Member since:
2006-02-05

Simple answer: Don't use the [testing] repo.

That said, it doesn't completely avoid problems. But I'm highly impresses at the relatively small amount of breakage, and relatively minor nature of it, in a rolling release system that Arch has. It is orders of magnitude better than when I tried Gentoo a couple years back (Gentoo may have improved since then).

On the flip side, using [testing] and providing feedback helps get packages better tested.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: updates well tested ??
by license_2_blather on Mon 11th Jan 2010 18:29 in reply to "updates well tested ??"
license_2_blather Member since:
2006-02-05

Simple answer: Don't use the [testing] repo.

That said, it doesn't completely avoid problems. But I'm highly impressed at the relatively small amount of breakage, and relatively minor nature thereof, that Arch has in a rolling release system. It is orders of magnitude better than when I tried Gentoo a couple years back (Gentoo may have improved since then).

On the flip side, using [testing] and providing feedback helps get packages better tested.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: updates well tested ??
by molnarcs on Mon 11th Jan 2010 19:29 in reply to "updates well tested ??"
molnarcs Member since:
2005-09-10

I am archer myself and I have a question, how do i ensure that latest updates are well tested and won't break my system ? With a rolling-release, before you could fix something the next release/update is out and it could still be broken.. the point is, arch is not meant for someone who cannot fix issues for themselves. How different is arch from say debian testing/sid in terms of what to expect when one upgrades his/her system??


Well, on the one hand, you just can't ensure that packages are well tested if you want the latest stable release. As the arch devs say in the interview, arch catches lots of gotchas because the distro is an early adopter.

On the other hand, important packages ARE tested in the testing repo. And if something slips by, arch devs are very very fast in providing fixes. If you see an upgrade to a major component (X, kernel, etc.) you can wait a few days and monitor the forum for posts describing issues with the update.

And lastly, the best way is to join the testing team - which basically means enabling the testing repos, and writing useful bug reports.

That said, I'm in no way an expert. I look at a PKGBuild, and I have no clue about what I'm looking at. I'm not a programmer, my dayjob and my education has nothing to do with computers. I just got curious about linux some 7-8 years ago, and I just got stuck with linux. It suits my needs. And of all the distroes I have tried, including the major "well tested" ones, Arch still seems to be the most stable of all. Well, Mandriva was fairly stable, but Kubuntu has been a nightmare since Gutsy (you can't get more UNTESTED than that), and the rest fluctuated in quality greatly.

So there are no insurances, but my experience tells me that these guys know what they are doing. And because of the simplicity, transparency, and clarity (staying as close to vanilla as possible) of the system, overall you get a very stable distro.

Reply Parent Score: 2