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Re: [GNU-linux-libre] New entries on FSF's fully free GNU/Linux list

From: A.J. Venter
Subject: Re: [GNU-linux-libre] New entries on FSF's fully free GNU/Linux list
Date: Mon, 14 Sep 2009 12:50:05 +0200

> That would be an improvement. I'd like to ask though, how come
> distributing sources is better than distributing binaries in this case.
> Our source isos are 3 times bigger than the binary ones, maybe your
> package system makes the difference here. Can you give us some figures?

Well there seems to be a general reporting that bandwith issues were
our reason for using ports, that's not quite true - it's a  reason,
but not the only one. For most programs, source packages are still
smaller than binaries - but that's a rule of thumb not a guarantee of
any kind, and with some like openoffice and chromium it's radically
the other way around.

Our major reasons for a ports system is speed, power and customization
however. Ports adapt the packages to the system as it is - so your
preferences become global. As an example, the lazarus RAD system can
use either GTK or QT interfaces, currently
GTK is their own default but you have to have the QT version to
compile QT apps with it.
The latter has a small library dependency that wraps QT for lazarus's
use. In Kongoni, if you install that first, Lazarus will automatically
build with both QT and GTK support (since GTK is there anyway) and
make QT the default, if install Lazarus without it, then Lazarus uses
and defaults to only GTK.
Now if you later rebuild say PIG which is developed with Lazarus, this
will inherit your choice, so whether your PIG system is
GTK or QT interfaced follows your personal preferences.

You can override standard options for MAKE and LCFLags, you can
override them on a per-package basis... this power to
set things up as you like them, to tweak and configure is fundamental
to what Kongoni is all about, and ports is one crucial aspect of that
power. Kongoni is a desktop system for power-users, for programmer and
system administrators and geeks and explorers, it's not designed for
secretaries. Of course, a secretary could use it - and probably use it
well, by sticking to the defaults, but she will not feel it's full
power and will be much more comfortable with a system like gnewsense
which is designed (or at least, based on a distro that is designed)
with her in mind. Kongoni has one aim: your distro, your way.

We're fully free not just in terms of packaging but our entire
philosophy is to let the user do whatever the hell he wishes - right
down to the way packages are built (while providing sane defaults so
he only *has* to when he *wants* to)


A.J. Venter
Founder and lead developer, Kongoni GNU/Linux - Blog

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