Gentoo Archives: gentoo-dev

From: Aron Griffis <agriffis@g.o>
To: gentoo-dev@l.g.o
Subject: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo?
Date: Mon, 06 Jun 2005 23:55:42
1 This is kinda bloggish, because it's basically a transcription of an
2 IRC monologue. My apologies if it's hard to follow... Nonetheless,
3 I'm interested in how other developers feel on the topics I bring up
4 below.
6 There have been some really interesting points brought up recently
7 about "where is Gentoo going?" I have been wondering that myself.
8 Some people seem to think that Gentoo has the potential to be an
9 enterprise player. I have not responded directly to those people, but
10 I wonder if they know what they mean. I have worked in the enterprise
11 UNIX market for 6 years. My code is running in places like NASA
12 mission control, 9-1-1 call centers, and most of the telephone
13 carriers. I've produced patches on weekends to close $800m deals.
14 I now work in hp's Open Source and Linux Organization, mostly on RHEL
15 and SLES, so I have a good idea of what it takes to be an enterprise
16 player.
18 In my humble opinion, Gentoo is missing too many points to be an
19 enterprise Linux. We commit to a live tree. We don't have true QA,
20 testing or tinderbox. We don't have paid staff, alpha/beta/rc cycles.
21 We don't really have product lifecycles, since we don't generally
22 backport fixes to older versions, requiring instead for people to
23 update to a more recent release. We don't have, and probably will
24 never be able to offer, support contracts. We support as wide a range
25 of hardware as the upstream kernel, plus hardware that requires
26 external drivers; we don't have access to a great deal of the hardware
27 for which we provide drivers. We understand when real life gets in
28 the way of bug-fixing, because all our developers are volunteers.
30 I think that attempting to take Gentoo in the "enterprise" direction
31 is a mistake. I think that we are a hobbyist distribution. This
32 doesn't mean that we should not strive to meet some of the enterprise
33 goals. Those things can be important to hobbyists too. But I don't
34 think we should be aiming for corporate America.
36 I don't even understand why that goal appeals to people. Let other
37 distros go there! I want Gentoo to run in people's homes, in student
38 dorm rooms, etc. Places where people want a fun distribution that
39 they can tailor and work on easily.
41 I like the idea of Gentoo on alternative arches and in embedded
42 environments. Not because I want Sony to start using Gentoo on
43 walkmans, but purely because the idea of running Linux on a PDA is
44 cool. I'd like Gentoo to be a place where neat things are developed.
45 If RH or SuSE (or another for-profit Linux vendor) wants to take some
46 of those developments and use them to make a profit, that's fine with
47 me. We're over here having fun.
49 Also I find it amusing when people say that Gentoo exists for the
50 users. I think that is wrong. Gentoo exists for the *developers*.
51 It's our playground, and it's the reason we use a live tree rather
52 than switching to an actually sane approach. The users are cool
53 because they point out bugs, help solve problems on bugzilla, suggest
54 enhancements, provide patches, and notify us of package updates.
55 Sometimes they become developers. But the truth is that Gentoo sees
56 improvement and maintenance in the areas that appeal to the
57 developers. And that is why Gentoo exists for the developers first,
58 the users second.
60 Regards,
61 Aron
63 --
64 Aron Griffis
65 Gentoo Linux Developer


Subject Author
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Colin Kingsley <tercel@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Lance Albertson <ramereth@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Dylan Carlson <absinthe@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Corey Shields <cshields@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Greg KH <gregkh@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? "M. Edward (Ed) Borasky" <znmeb@×××××××.net>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? James Northrup <glamdring-inc@×××××××.net>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Luca Barbato <lu_zero@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Simon Stelling <blubb@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Maurice van der Pot <griffon26@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Chris Gianelloni <wolf31o2@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? "Nathan L. Adams" <nadams@××××.org>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Chris White <chriswhite@g.o>
Re: [gentoo-dev] where goes Gentoo? Where went Fido? Jim Northrup <glamdring-inc@×××××××.net>
[gentoo-dev] Re: where goes Gentoo? "Sven Köhler" <skoehler@×××.de>