Home > Debian > Debian Vendors Launch Common Core Alliance Debian Vendors Launch Common Core Alliance Thom Holwerda 2005-08-11 Debian 40 Comments One of the worst kept secrets in the Linux industry was revealed at LinuxWorld this week with the announcement that a group of Debian-based Linux vendors have formed an alliance to promote the enterprise use of the Debian GNU/Linux package. About The Author Thom Holwerda Follow me on Twitter @thomholwerda 40 Comments 2005-08-11 6:03 pm An alliance is needed if debian wants to get more feed in the serverroom, this includes commercial support. At my place there won’t come in any linux server without commercial support. i will define support here: – quick security fixes with a QA – i know the os will be there the next 4-5 years. – when there is a problem it’s being fixed 2005-08-11 6:11 pm cwdrake Why no Ubuntu in this alliance? 2005-08-11 6:46 pm markw Ubuntu is more for workstations because of its fast release cycle. Debian releases, on the other hand, are not very close together, therefore they are more stable for servers. Also, it allows them to be supported with security updates for longer times without the company having to upgrade the servers to the latest version. Mark 2005-08-11 7:22 pm hello all, i may be more radical in my approach when it comes to freedom than mr. stallman – however i must strongly discourage a hasty categorization of this move as “selling out” by some debian development followers or participants. instead i encourage all involved parties to use the opportunity and provide a real alternative model to the development model “fedora” vs. “enterprise redhat”, a model where open development and industrial application influence each other without artificial barriers (as opposed to redhats commercial distribution which does have restricted access). i will closely monitor the future development of debian too see if this will happen. even if it does not come up to my high expectations the results will surely be noteworthy. i may add that i am in no way affiliated with debian development or maintainance. i would be very interested in reading comments on this by people who actually are – any good links on this? regards, tilman. 2005-08-11 7:43 pm The name of the alliance says it all. The Ubuntu and Debian does not share the same core – maybe they’re pretty similar, but they’re not completely compitable. 2005-08-11 8:26 pm We are using several installations of Debian (Telco bussines) for: – Web Server (Apache) – DB Server (PostgreSQL) – Application Server: Perl (html + xul + tk) (accessing PostgreSQL on Debian and Sybase on Solaris and Windows), custom SNMP traps generation, SMS Alarms generation, JFFNMS, OpenNMS, … – Asterisk VoIP + application Server – Rich Scripting Environment (Believe me, there is a big difference between (g)awk on Solaris and any other Linux, especially when processing large, fairly complex txt files) – … Works like charm 2005-08-11 8:38 pm Ubuntu replaces some Debian packages with newer versions of software and leaves some older than Debian. These differences make it very hard to use official Debian packages. This is more a political decision, than a technical one – a way of declaring a sort of independance. Therefore Ubuntu is only a subset of Debian and the Alliance aims to _BE_ Debian. The final goal is that there will be one truly standard, binary compatible Linux OS and you will be able to choose any front end you want, be it Debian, Linspire or something else. Wouldn’t it be nice not to worry about if package X or Y is in your distribution? Well, soon it will. 2005-08-11 9:01 pm Ubuntu replaces some Debian packages with newer versions of software and leaves some older than Debian. These differences make it very hard to use official Debian packages. This is more a political decision, than a technical one – a way of declaring a sort of independance. I don’t speak for Ubuntu, but I believe you are incorrect. I think the Ubuntu model was a pragmatic choice. Ubuntu takes the sid unstable branch, every six months, and freezes it – they add their customizations, of course, but the key point is that they are freezing, testing, and stabilizing a version of sid. Six months later, they do it again for the next Ubuntu release. And so on. Why would they do this, when you can just use the stable version of Debian? Because when Ubuntu launched, as well know, the stable version of Debian was so creaky old it was bareful useful even for servers (it wouldn’t install on much new hardware). Lots of people lost faith that Debian would ever have a sane, regular release process again, and “freezing sid” lets you work around that. Now, after a long delay, we have Sarge – and that’s great. The DCCA distros are basing off of Sarge. Why shouldn’t Ubuntu switch now? Well, for one, they’ve only been around less than a year – and the freezing sid approach works for them, so far. That Debian can continue to spit out regular releases is far from proven. Plus the freezing sid approach gives them a Fedora-like currency, though hopefully more usable and stable. Of course that can also be done by backporting newer packages to the older core, and there are many benefits to this – like better compatibility with the rest of the Debian family. I suspect that if DCCA takes off, and Debian manages regular releases, that Ubuntu will eventually shift over to DCCA over the next couple of years. 2005-08-11 9:03 pm Moulinneuf For those interested the official website is : http://www.dccalliance.org/ As you can see , there is no download button or ftp or outside link to something to be dowloaded. Which make me call it vaporware at this time. Also there is no : If you whant to join contact … There is no Guideline paper as to what Guidelines they whant to enforce and what software they are offering. http://www.dccalliance.org/contact.html Heather MacKenzie DCC Alliance Press Contact 858 587 6700 x263 858 405 4538 (mobile) email@example.com Thge above might be why Ubuntu and the rest are running away from it … It look like another PR stunt with no content at the end. 2005-08-11 9:22 pm It look like another PR stunt with no content at the end. They just announced it two days ago at LinuxWorld – my guess is they’re all still in San Fran. And if you want to see code, I suggest going to the Componentized Linux site and looking at the LSB module. I think it’s pretty obvious that’s where they’re going to begin. http://componentizedlinux.org/index.php/Main_Page 2005-08-12 1:19 am it is my understanding as for now that DCC is on behalf of as many “commercial debian derivates” as possible to establish a “core that is Debian” and furthermore asserting some things with regards to that “core (which is Debian)”. reading the mailinglist debates I found the following especially informative: http://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2005/07/msg00216.html There appears to be more and distinct display of a variety of attitude in the later postings. I must agree that a proper self-profile in the form of guidelines, roadmap or some other structured information had made the web publication that we see now more interesting. a scientfical definition of “core” would have been especially useful. I know “core” from ?BSD (where it works) and from XFree86[tm] (where it doesn’t). I wonder if such associations are intentional. however since one of the self-proclaimed tasks of the DCC _is_ to establish the notion of a “core (which is Debian)” that is just what they can _not_ deliver right now. .-) friendly greetings, tilman 2005-08-11 9:13 pm its NEW, and as we all know debian doesnt do anything fast. give it six months then judge it. 2005-08-11 9:15 pm morgoth A “dcca” without Debian? I think not. I don’t care who’s starting it, either. The goals of these guys aren’t the same as Debian’s and I see no need for Debian to join, or to embrace or support this movement. As the previous poster indicated, it’s all just vapourwarish PR stunts anyways. As to no Ubuntu – Ubuntu has compatibility problems with Debian proper, so how could you even justify including it? Dave 2005-08-11 9:25 pm A “dcca” without Debian? I think not. I don’t care who’s starting it, either. The goals of these guys aren’t the same as Debian’s and I see no need for Debian to join, or to embrace or support this movement. As the previous poster indicated, it’s all just vapourwarish PR stunts anyways. You’re obviously correct. Clearly Ian Murdoch, the founder of Debian, is trying to destroy it. And just as clearly, it’s a really bad idea for Debian-derived distros to base themselves on a common core, with the idea of remaining compatible with each other and Debian. I mean, being able to take a Debian package and run it unchanged on Xandros or Linspire or LinEx – that’s just a terrible, terrible idea. Don’t these guys understand the Linux tradition, that every single distro be completely incompatible with every other? What are these evil people thinking?? </sarcasm> 2005-08-11 11:45 pm morgoth Quote: “I mean, being able to take a Debian package and run it unchanged on Xandros or Linspire or LinEx – that’s just a terrible, terrible idea.” Umm. Well, *if* these 3rd party Debian offsprings bothered to use the *actual* Debian packages, they wouldn’t have a problem then would they? They *are* the ones taking and bastardising non Debian packages from 3rd parties, and then bitching about compatibility with Debian proper and its packages. That’s *not* Debian’s problem. I have no pity for these types of distros that sponge off Debian and then complain that they can’t have compatability with Debian. They are their own worse enemies. If they want to have you-beaut “up to date” Debian based distros, with up to date packages, fine. But then it’s up to them to synch their packages, and develop them, and do all the security related stuff, and host the damn .debs, not Debian. Debian doesn’t have to have anything to do with it all. I’d rather Debian have nothing to do with this “commercialisation” etc. I want to see Debian stay as a community project, with the same ideals, and not have some business conglomerate interfere (or attempt to interfere). Debian has problems, we all know that. It needs to drop arches, and it needs to speed up its release program. The installer needs real work imho, it’s very amateurish and unpolished. These things will happen with time. Dave 2005-08-12 1:22 am I don’t even want to hear about non compatible packages anymore, I just spent the last 3 hours trying to get Ubuntu installed onto a Laptop that doesn’t have a CD-ROM. Hoary doesn’t have any boot floppies that I could see, so I had to install with Sarge floppies, then upgrade to Hoary. Talk about breaking apt! Since Sarge had slightly different libc6 packages, it completely borked everything. The problem with Ubuntu that I have noticed, is that they have the tendency to update all the user visible things (like Gnome, X.org, etc) but none of the underlying libraries and apps. Though I think they are working on synchronising compatibility with Sid, once they do their release, which will of course break again, because Sid is ‘unstable’ after all. I just wish more of Ubuntu’s patches would be backported to standard debian (for instance the libata.h patch to enable SATA optical drives. I managed to get that into Hoary before it was released, but all the debian kernels so far don’t have it (it’s just a simple change from #undef to #define for the ATA_ENABLE_ATAPI) I don’t think I’ll ever attempt to put Ubuntu on a laptop with only a floppy drive again though, what a pain. Please for Breezy, have some floppy boot disks! 2005-08-12 1:32 am g2devi Well considering that it also doesn’t include, Libranet, the oldest commercial Debian distribution, it loses a little legitimacy and experience in dealing with the Debian community. Personally, I hope that something good comes from it, but seeing that they’re calling themselves the “Debian Common Core Alliance” (in the press and on their website) without even getting Debian’s permission to use the Debian trademark, they’re starting off on the wrong foot. I’m personnally surprised that Ian made such a diplomatic blunder. Managing a relationship with an organization as complicated as Debian can be tricky, even when you have the best of intentions and follow all the rules. Ubuntu is a classic example. They’ve clearly defined their process and relationship to Debian (SID snapshots stabilized every 6 months) publicized any security patches they’ve made, and helped bring several technologies from Experimental into SID (X.org being the biggest), but even now there is still a bit of public perception among some that Ubuntu is a Debian fork. The DCC needs to watch its step. 2005-08-12 2:05 am morgoth Interestingly, I currently use Libranet (a Libranet 3 beta, since I was one of the many dedicated testers). I’ve ran 2.8.1 for some time as well prior to this. Saving my pennies to buy Libranet 3 in the next month or so! Libranet 3, from my experience, seems to give the greastes compatibility with Debian ‘proper’, with the least amount of breakage. Whilst I’m not employed by Libranet, I’m pretty confident that Tal & Daniel wouldn’t be interested in PR stunts like this anyways. Quote: “there is still a bit of public perception among some that Ubuntu is a Debian fork.” imho, Ubuntu is a fork, and is bad for Debian. That’s my honest perception. Dave 2005-08-12 3:56 am Buffalo Soldier imho, Ubuntu is a fork, and is bad for Debian. That’s my honest perception. I honestly disagree, it is not a fork. http://www.netsplit.com/blog/work/canonical/ubuntu_and_debian.html http://mako.cc/writing/to_fork_or_not_to_fork.html http://www.ubuntulinux.org/ubuntu/relationship/document_view 2005-08-12 3:53 pm My favourite line from the first link you provided: “One thing that should be obvious from this is our job is a lot easier if Debian take all of our changes” 2005-08-12 5:15 pm g2devi > My favourite line from the first link you provided: > > “One thing that should be obvious from this is our job is a lot easier if Debian take all of our changes” I’m not sure how you’re reading it, but from Mark Shuttleworth’s Debconf5 presentation, I interprete it to mean three things: a) Ubuntu wants to stay as close to Debian SID as possible without breaking backwards compatibility within a release and sync back up during the next release. b) SID has its own priorities independent of Ubuntu. Ubuntu has stable releases while SID is named after the kid who regularly broke the toys in Toy Story. It’s a play area. Ubuntu might submit a patch to *keep* backwards compatibility for the next release while SID wants to *break* backwards compatibility because it’s going to anyway and most apps have adjusted to the breakage. The ones that haven’t will get fixed soon enough. c) Because SID is deals with regular breakages, it may not want to include experimental packages like X.org until a quiet period. Ubuntu, OTOH has stabilization periods, so it feels more comfortable stabilizing X.org and including it in the base distribution. When the SID quiet periods come, the Ubuntu work will help SID accept X.org quicker than it would have otherwise because the patches are geared towards SID inclusion. It seems like a perfectly practical observation about different priorities and consessions that need to be made to manage it. 2005-08-12 11:20 am > imho, Ubuntu is a fork, and is bad for Debian. That’s my honest perception. i am sceptic about that. if i got you right, your perception is: “ubuntu” is an organisation. it consists of people. those people now are in an organisation called “ubuntu” (and work for its goals) while they also could be in the organisation “debian” (and work for its goals). as i previously posted, i am not affilianted with debian. this means that i am outside of the organisation of debian. am i “bad for debian”? am i “less bad” for debian because i am completely outside, or does that make me “more bad”? it is not the case that i intend to clash what you have written, nor do i want to mock about it. i want to understand your point of view. regards, tilman.  “completely outside” means: i do not run a linux distribution of my own which re-uses large parts of debian. in fact i run no linux distribution at all nor am i affiliated with any distributor. 2005-08-12 2:46 am Syntaxis “Well considering that it also doesn’t include, Libranet, the oldest commercial Debian distribution, it loses a little legitimacy and experience in dealing with the Debian community.” Well, Xandros has been around at least as long. It’s simply a continuation of the old Corel Linux distribution under a new name. It has the same engineers behind it, even (see http://www.g4tv.com/techtvvault/features/32154/Corel_Sells_Linux_Di…). Don’t get me wrong – the more the merrier, of course, but Libranet is hardly a significant player. 2005-08-11 9:16 pm ubuntu doesn’t forked anything every 6 month they take sid branch and optimize those packages with custom patches. DCC Alliance members are userlinux – flop linspire – megaflop progeny – ?? knoppix – ok xandros – ok 2005-08-11 10:16 pm JeffS I hope this DCCA takes off. For commercial distribution purposes, it would be awesome to have a stable, consistent core that all Debian derived distros adhere to. With already a huge install base, Debian and Debian derived distros will only grow more, and be a real competitor to RHEL and SuSE. 2005-08-11 10:33 pm Smartpatrol Now is there chance to clean up Debian and get it enterprise ready. The first major hurdle is to find corporate backing to create a support infrastructure for corporations wanting to incorporate Debian Enterprise into their environment. Next it needs to be better then other current linux offerings. Either way good news. 2005-08-11 11:54 pm Morty I think you are somewhat off base there in your evaluation of the DCC members. In the real world it looks like this: Knoppix – ok Xandros – ok, commercial and doing fairly good Linspire – ok, commercial, bigger and doing better than Xandros Userlinux – Stillborn, let it rest in peace. Progeny – Murdocks venture to capitalize on Debian, a flop. The biggest reason for this are caused by the missmangement of Debian(You have to deliver in the commercial world) and made irrelevant by (K)Ubuntu. 2005-08-12 3:44 am > A “dcca” without Debian? I think not. I don’t care who’s starting it, either. > The goals of these guys aren’t the same as Debian’s and I see no need for > Debian to join, or to embrace or support this movement. So we need to find a way to motivate Debian. what about these two equations: Core compatibility + Common core development + Common driver development = Better & more stable Debian Binary compatibility + Common repository + Common update manager = Better & more stable Debian Programs Why would it be worse to have ‘commercial’ interest influence Debian than it is the Linux kernel? Just look at participation from IBM in the kernel development, that hasn’t been bad now, has it? So why can’t the DCC Alliance just base their distros on Debian stable? Because they don’t want to base their distros on another distro, they want to base it on a core… What has happened to date is that they all independently had to ‘strip down’ Debian to what each of them perceived as a core to build upon. The problem was they all came to different conclusions. Creating the DCC Alliance is a way of telling Debian that they want a clearly defined core to base all of their distros on. Now it’s up to Debian to respond to this, and I for one am hoping they will meet the needs of the derived distros and be able to remain their goals at the same time. /AnonyMouse 2005-08-12 1:48 pm rakamaka I love debian and have never problem with so called unstable version. Recently user friendly distros are coming out at race car speed. Includes Ubuntu, Knoppix, Mepis, Linspire and Xandros. All are based entirely on Debian. These distros are not adding any architecture, or development aspects to linux community. These are just bunch of Thugs packing old wine in new bottle. They are just adjusting filesystems to make it user friendly. At least redhat, slackware are trend setters of new philosophy. These so famous debian based distros DON’t EVEN ACKNOWLEDGE DEBIAN BASE ON THEIR WEBSITE front page!!! What are they ashamed of???? They hide there debian installer behind some fancy GUI. remember they won’t exist without debian. So mere chat forum acknowledgement is not good enough….if they behave as if they think have created something devine on this earth by stealing everything from debian then there is not much difference with MS. 2005-08-12 3:39 pm if what you say is true then one should make a proposal to DCC (and ubuntu and whoever is not in DCC) where it is suggested that each debian-derivate puts the debian logo and some acknowledgement on their website splash and the product boxing cover. one could design a special logo in the “<whatever> inside” style for that. there sure is no way to enforce this, but if one of those parties backs out from doing so it would be an indicator for the false claiming that you objected to. regards, tilman. 2005-08-12 5:48 pm Buffalo Soldier > These so famous debian based distros DON’t EVEN > ACKNOWLEDGE DEBIAN BASE ON THEIR WEBSITE front > page!!!… So mere chat forum acknowledgement is not > good enough… Ubuntu official website ( http://www.ubuntulinux.org/ubuntu/relationship/document_view ) clearly states “Debian is the rock upon which Ubuntu is built.” Plus they’ve said a lot of good things about Debian and in my humble opinion already given the due credit to Debian, not just mere chat forum – > They hide there debian installer behind some fancy > GUI. Ubuntu still uses the same ‘text-based’ Debian installer. Some may say this isn’t a good thing. But I’m just stating it to say that Ubuntu isn’t hiding behind some fancy GUI installer. > if they behave as if they think have created > something devine on this earth by stealing > everything from debian then there is not much > difference with MS. I don’t believe these distros are “stealing”. Debian official website ( http://www.debian.org/intro/free ) clearly states: – You can make as many copies of the software as you want and give them to whomever you want (free or open redistribution). – There are no restrictions on modifying the software (except for keeping certain notices intact). – There is no restriction on distributing, or even selling, the software. And it also states that: “This last point, which allows the software to be sold for money seems to go against the whole idea of free software. It is actually one of its strengths.” 2005-08-12 6:22 pm Some examples of the front page of websites are below and tell me where do end-user gets info about debian as the foundation of these distros??? There shold be clearcut respectful wordings on the FRONT page of these distros about debian. Not mice type hidings… Take a look at webpages of…..with a binocular to find word debian… http://www.linspire.com http://www.knoppix.com http://www.mepis.org http://www.xandros.com http://www.ubuntu.com http://www.kubuntu.org Following are some lines from distro websites example What is KNOPPIX®? KNOPPIX is a bootable Live system on CD or DVD, consisting of a representative collection of GNU/Linux software, automatic hardware detection, and support for many graphics cards, sound cards, SCSI and USB devices and other peripherals. KNOPPIX can be used as a productive Linux system for the desktop, educational CD, rescue system, or adapted and used as a platform for commercial software product demos. It is not necessary to install anything on a hard disk. Due to on-the-fly decompression, the CD can have up to 2 GB of executable software installed on it Linspire is a full-featured operating system like Microsoft Windows XP or Apple Mac OSX. Xandros Business Desktop OS is a secure, stable desktop alternative that plugs right in to your Windows network with domain authentication, logon scripts, and group policy profiles. Get full-featured Xandros for a fraction of the cost of Windows XP. Looking to make the switch? Take the Xandros Enterprise Linux Challenge! 2005-08-12 6:46 pm Syntaxis “Some examples of the front page of websites are below and tell me where do end-user gets info about debian as the foundation of these distros???” Check out Jaldhar Vyas’s report (http://www.braincells.com/debian/index.cgi/search/item=102) on this year’s Linuxworld in Boston, for instance: — Again this year, recogniton of the Debian name is increasing. There were still a quite a few people who needed an explanation but many more who had at least heard of us either directly or through some Debian-based distro such as Ubuntu or Knoppix, Linspire, Mepis (I met Warren Woodford of Mepis) and Xandros. It looks like the derivatives are doing a pretty good job of giving us credit for our work. — Besides, it seems pretty churlish to lambast those doing something beneficial purely on the grounds that they could be doing more… That way madness lies, and *everyone* is guilty. For instance, however much money you may give to charity (if any) I could still scold you for spending 50p on a can of coke, on the grounds that the same money could have been better spent feeding a starving child in Africa. 2005-08-12 7:31 pm rakamaka When Charity gives homeless person a land, or money or material to build a home, the homeless person acknowledges that charity on a big signboard at the front door of the home not on his backyard. By the way, this homeless person after two years sells the home, makes million, ‘buys’ another home in posh area and forgets the charity. what needed is a single line on their title page….”This distro is based on Debian…” ….that is good enough 2005-08-12 9:11 pm what needed is a single line on their title page….”This distro is based on Debian…” ….that is good enough If Debian requires such credit on the front-page of web sites, then Debian should require this in their license. Of course, they wouldn’t be free software anymore… If you’re worried about people “stealing” (using) your work and then being “ungrateful” enough not to post a sign in their yard thanking you (or not posting a sign large enough for your taste)… then you’re in the wrong community. It’s just not how it works. Copyright notices, following the licenses… sure. But being grateful? You can’t mandate that. Not to mention – look at what’s happening with Ian Murdoch – if one of these derived distros credited Debian too prominently, they’d be immediately accused of trying to align themselves with Debian or portray themselves as officially recognized or sponsored… There’s no winning with these people. Lots of derived distros, like LinEx and Ubuntu, are very clear about their Debian origins. Others are less so, and if that morally offends you then I suggest writing a letter. I don’t see how complaining about it here does you any good. Seems to me a group like DCCA can only broaden Debian’s mindshare. 2005-08-12 9:31 pm Syntaxis “Not to mention – look at what’s happening with Ian Murdoch – if one of these derived distros credited Debian too prominently, they’d be immediately accused of trying to align themselves with Debian or portray themselves as officially recognized or sponsored… There’s no winning with these people.” What a terrible comparison. The objections to the DCCA are that it includes “Debian” in the name without permission (despite Ian’s promises that it would not do so – see http://lists.debian.org/debian-project/2005/07/msg00258.html) in such a way that it might cause people to assume it’s affiliated with the Debian Project. A statement such as “This distro is based on Debian”, on the other hand, is merely an unambiguous factual statement. Besides, the developers are acting in the only way they can. Debian *must* defend its trademark against what it perceives to be infringing uses, or else risk losing it altogether. 2005-08-13 12:00 am morgoth http://www.libranet.com/ Quote from the page: “Libranet is a GNU/Linux operating system based on the Debian distribution. This makes Libranet a system that is both powerful and easy to use for home computers users, system administrators, and developers.” so, one of the oldest Debian based Linux distros does seem to respect Debian 😉 Dave 2005-08-14 12:06 am tilz > so, one of the oldest Debian based Linux distros does seem to respect Debian 😉 precisely that is what i meant. i consider this the “old and good style of fairness” as opposed to the “new and style of doing what’s doable in terms of the license”. it is a fear of mine that good and creative minds who for the time being do their best to help “debian” feel pulled over the barrel by ppl such as ian seemingly with unquestionable authority going “enterprise”, putting the name “debian” on it “without asking first”. myself being reasonable when it comes to such affairs i do not have that feeling in the slightest (in fact i do not care for what ian does or does not) – but i am not a “good and creative mind” either. bottom line: without a clear concept of credit there will be no credibility. 2005-08-14 12:08 am tilz sorry, the first paragraph should have read: precisely that is what i meant. i consider this the “old and good style of fairness” as opposed to the “new and improved style of doing what’s doable in terms of the license”. 2005-08-14 4:40 am Quite strangely, these popular distros are aligning towards windows. On their websites, they mention how they can do everything windows do! How they are user/business friendly like windows etc etc. Why are they wearing windows clothes and sharing bed with MS? Because they are shy to mention their biological heritage, Debian!!! Think WHY live cds based on slack, redhat or mandrake are not so popular?? Because these main distros are made for ‘geeks only’ so their offsprings. While Debian has laid rock solid foundation which will benefit generations to come….Shouldn’t we thank debian for a minute?. Yes we need good old styled fairness!!