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Re: [tlug] Mandrake vs. Red Hat

On Wed, Jun 05, 2002 at 01:37:36PM -0400, Josh Glover wrote:
> Matt Doughty wrote:
> > I can't think of any reason to use RH over debian. The install
> > might not be as flashy, but once you are installed everything
> > else is better. As far as binary package based distros I really
> > don't think anything I have seen compares to Debian period. You
> > can't make a mistake switching.
> I knew this thread would touch off a flamewar!

Wow I must be getting really crufty. I didn't even know I was starting
a flame war. I don't even have my asbestos wardrobe handy. ;)

> Come on, "everything else is better"!? Care to quantify or qualify that 
> statement in some way?

Ok. I was mostly just abusing hyberbole, but since you asked I will try
qualify. I judge distros on two major points:

1. package system: It should be trivial to add and remove software for
   whatever reason.  Debian wins here becuase it has a huge selection of
   packages, and you can add/remove them from the command line with little
   difficulty.  This is extremely valuable when you are trying to upgrade
   a bunch of remote servers via ssh. In the case of RH this is incredibly
   painful by and large.

2. visibility of the system: in other words can I easily see how the
   system is configured, and change it with my editor of choice with
   a minimal amount of blood shed. RH has a bad habit of hiding the 
   systems guts in convoluted scripts. I'm sure it is great for those
   who like gui config tools, but I still consider it a major flaw.

> In my opinion, RPM is a much better system than dpkg / apt-foo. Of 
> course, I prefer BSD ports (and how about Gentoo's portage! good shite!) 
> to RPM, but that is not particularly binary-based. Intelligent use of 
> RPM has served me quite well.

I love gentoo though it still needs to work out a few issues. I really
need to find the time to push through a configurable prefix for protage.
Still as much as I love gentoo I would hesitate to put it on a server.
I'm sure this will change with a bit more maturity though. As for RPM
I don't have a problem with the format per se. I like apt-get and I
think that RH needs something simmilar built in the base distro before
they can compete.  At the point I have to go find and download 15+ RPMs
in order to install a package I might as well be rolling from source.

> But, to drop the hostility to your opinions for a moment, what are some 
> of the specific things that you like better in Debian?

I think I covered them. As for the hostility that is the spice of life
my friend. If you ever feel like I have made unfair statements, this
won't be the last time I assure you, flame away.  ;)
> As for RH "getting in the way", I agree that I certainly can, but I have 
> to fall back to the argument that just because a distro provides flashy 
> config tools and so on, the admin is not required to use them. I have 
> not touched a *config tool in a good long while (discounting ifconfig, 
> of course!), and not felt particularly hindered.

Yes, you can config RH from the command line.  The problem is they have
munged up etc a bit to make there tools work. I'm obviously exagerating
but I can't recommend a distro that makes thing more difficult to follow
in the name of gui config tools.


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