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Ubuntu Edgy sux

X doesn’t recognise the laptop’s built-in display.

Safe graphics mode doesn’t work, either. 

The new bootslpash screen b0rks your computer.

Many Ubuntu devs seem to have disappeared.

Meanwhile Ubuntu keeps drowning in bug reports. That’s somewhat to be expected after a release, but one could also expect that bug reports get dealt with more quickly. I know many of the reports are upstream bugs, but the lack of acknowledgement of bug reports from the devs frutrates me. I’m sitting there trying to do proper triage for the bug report I’m involved in, and nothing happens.

This really shows the limits of a "semi-fork" like Ubuntu. Judging the number of Canonical employees and the current size of the developer community (including volunteer helpers), Ubuntu is simply not able to cope with their own success.

If you want to be a big player in the Linux distribution game, re-packaging Debian and adding some bling is not enough. You’ll have to develop significant in-house expertise on the software you are distributing if you don’t want to depend on the next upstream release to fix your users’ bugs. Redhat, SUSE/Novell, Debian have that. Other big players like Mandriva probably have it, as well. Ubuntu isn’t right there yet.

Ubuntu used to hype their bugsquad and their bug days. However, too many "unpopular" bugs that no-one wants to triage nor investigate still fall through the net. Take the three bugs I mentioned above. None of them are critical on their own. Added together however, they make the system unusable and have the potential of sending manymany users running aways after their first steps with GNU/Linux.

If Ubuntu really wants to do more things better than all the other distros, dealing with bugs should be one of their prime topics. A bug squad that actually looks at every reported bug and triages it properly instead of letting it rot in the bts would be a big advantage compared to other big distros. However, that requires significantly more developer power than Ubuntu has got at the moment.

And btw: Next time, please don’t disappear to conferences shortly after a release.

5 Responses to “Ubuntu Edgy sux”

  1. florianhaas Says:

    Tell me about it

    Dapper Flight 3 broke the support for RT61 mini-PCI wlan-cards. It was/is a packaging error of the driver. The bug was filed (https://launchpad.net/distros/ubuntu/+source/linux-source-2.6.15/+bug/35474), but a fix never hit Dapper. Now Edgy seems to have the same problem, and even more rt61-related issues.

    Ubuntu tried too hard to be on the bleeding edge; a Debian-testing with some auto-configuration of hardware would have been what most people want.

  2. ciaran Says:

    finding / making polish

    Another option is gNewSense: http://www.gnewsense.org/

    If it’s polish you’re looking for, you mightn’t find it there, but if you’re looking for a distro that you wouldn’t mind helping, gNewSense seems like a good option since it’s primary goal is to package and distribute a fully free software OS.

  3. florianhaas Says:

    gnewsense

    While I understand the goals of gnewsense, i don’t understand why they chose to base the distro on ubuntu.
    Wouldn’t it have been easier to directly use Debian?

  4. ciaran Says:

    Why ubuntu?

    @florianhaas: I think Ubuntu was chosen because it’s more user friendly.

    Ututo already provides a free software distro for techs, and Ubuntu provides a not-fully-free distro for non-techs. Debian is somewhere in the middle – less free than Ututo, less user friendly than Ubuntu.

    gNewSense will be as free as Ututo, and as user friendly as Ubuntu …except than some of your hardware might not work :-)

  5. incinerator Says:

    I’m a happy Debian punter

    Well, normally I should not really worry to much, I’m a happy Debian user anyways. I used to have Ubuntu installed on desktop and laptop just to have a look at it. There’s still a couple of open bug reports left over from that time. It’s just that this is bad for the community. For the last two years or so, we at Edlug have always been recommending Ubuntu, and it’s been the default distro to use for Install Days and such. If things work, it’s really awesome, well integrated, wifi working out of the box etc.
    Also, the user community is great and documentation is of better quality compared to other distros. For me as a long-time Debian fanboy it’s easy to help Ubuntu users if their computers have problems.
    I guess it’s not only Ubuntu that are having problems with buggy upstream software, but given their popularity, they really should do more to combat the bugs.

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