[SASAG] Linux Server Distro Recommendations

Atom Powers atom.powers at gmail.com
Wed Aug 5 15:01:33 PDT 2009

On Wed, Aug 5, 2009 at 2:45 PM, <jeremy at 2monkeys.org> wrote:
> Just a background question.  What does "too strict with packages" mean?

Good question, I didn't want to be too specific at first.

My experience with RedHat/CentOS is that the packages are maintained
as binary package + security patch, and very little of the software I
want is included in the base repositories. This makes it difficult for
me to locate the software version I wanted, even if I knew the
software I wanted was in the package repository. I ended up getting
most of the software from dlutter's repo; but what's the point of a
stable-target software repo if it doesn't have the software you need?

I prefer source for packages, because I often have specific build
options I need that may not have been built in the binary package.
But, for obvious  reasons, binary packages are often better. (FreeBSD
has both.)

I rarely have problems with dependencies anymore, most of the packages
managers seem to have figured that out. (Although upgrading perl was a
lesson in pain.)

> From a software management perspective, I think packaging is great.  You
> know at a glance exactly what's on your system, what rev it's at, and that
> all the precursors are in place.  While there was a time when I would build
> from source and run make install, I'd never do that today.  If you need to
> build software which is either not bundled in Your Distro of Choice or not
> built the way you want it, or out of date, you can roll your own RPMs (and
> .DEB packages) with a little advanced prep.  Unless you're managing a very
> small number of servers, there's no way I'd go back to the old world.

Perfection is just a word I use occasionally with mustard.
--Atom Powers--

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