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Re: [Nmh-workers] Volunteer Capacity.

From: Bob Carragher
Subject: Re: [Nmh-workers] Volunteer Capacity.
Date: Mon, 31 Jul 2017 19:58:26 -0700

On Sun, 30 Jul 2017 11:42:01 +0100 Ralph Corderoy <address@hidden> sez:

> Hi Bob,
> > (I originally intended to use 13.10 until 14.04 LTS came out.
> > Laziness.  B-)
> Erm, I was Ubuntu 10.10 until 2016-02-13 when this Arch Linux
> took over.  :-)  Finding the block of time to do the Ubuntu
> upgrade was a chore, and the next one would pile up behind it.

Sounds exactly like me.  ^_^;;;

> With Arch, it's a rolling release with a steady stream of
> package updates, about half a dozen a day, though that would
> depend on the range of packages installed.  "core" packages
> have passed through "testing" repositories that mean they've
> been signed off by Arch's developers before reaching me.

This sounds like what happens with my smart phone, although I
care a lot less if an upgrade bricks my phone than if one bricks
my laptop.

But even assuming things go smoothly, the other thing that stops
me from simply upgrading when new Ubuntu versions come out is
that I have a sufficiently non-standard install.  Specifically,
I prefer to use ctwm instead of any of the modern "desktops"
because I've spent decades developing a work flow around it.
(Example:  I use all 32 workspaces.  I'm not just lazy regarding
OS upgrades.  ^_^;;)  Since I'm not a "real" sys-admin -- I
haven't really kept up with all the changes in what program does
XYZ or what files need to be touched to do PDQ since I admin-ed
on Solaris 2.6 -- I still make use of Ubuntu admin tools, but
their operation is partially broken since I'm launching X
directly and only some of the Gnome stuff (like gnome-panel,
nm-applet), and I never figured out how to do so so that access
control works (without launching all of Gnome, which would mean
not using ctwm).

So although a fresh install would only take a couple hours, I
need to see what has changed since my last OS update, which
usually means figuring out the new way to do XYZ -- and that's
what typically causes this to balloon to days, if not weeks.
(This is not to say that my laptop is bricked for that whole
time; just that I end up with lots of papercuts to deal with.)
I don't mind having to relearn how to do stuff on my phone, but
that's because I don't spend hours on it doing complex work.

> I've had very little breakage.  It's always been due to my old
> Nvidia hardware IIRC, and the fix has followed along promptly.
> It's nice to find up to date software to hand as packages, and
> to report an issue on, say, Github and have the fix in a
> package update within a week.  Quite a contrast to a nine or
> twelve month wait with Ubuntu, if I'm lucky, and if I bothered
> to upgrade.

This would be quite nice, if the breakage is minimal indeed.

You mention that there's usually a fix that follows along pretty
quickly.  If the breakage in my case is that they've changed how
to do XYZ in a way that I don't want (c.f. Apple removing support
for playlist folders, something I'll never forgive them for), is
it trivially easy to undo a package's upgrade?



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