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posted by janrinok on Wednesday November 19 2014, @11:25AM   Printer-friendly
from the I-hope-we-don't-regret-this dept.

Ian Jackson's general resolution to prevent init system coupling has failed to pass, the majority vote deciding that the resolution is unnecessary. This means that not only will Debian's default init be systemd, but packages will not be required to support other init systems. Presumably, this means that using other init systems on Debian (without using systemd as a base) will not be possible without major workarounds, or possibly at all. It also leaves the future of Debian projects such as kFreeBSD unclear, as systemd is linux specific.

The vote results can be found here

The winners are:

Option 4 "General Resolution is not required"

 
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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday November 19 2014, @11:35AM

    by The Mighty Buzzard (18) Subscriber Badge <themightybuzzard@soylentnews.org> on Wednesday November 19 2014, @11:35AM (#117593) Homepage Journal

    As an Arch user on all my personal machines, this doesn't mean a whole lot to me; I've been on systemd for a while, though I reserve the right to bitch about it. As a sysadmin who usually puts debian and derivatives on servers I now have to revisit Slackware as my server distro of choice.

    --
    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @12:53PM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @12:53PM (#117613)

    This issue extends far beyond individual distros, and far beyond Debian.

    Over the past few years, we've systematically seen several large and significant open source projects utterly trashed by the same sort of hipsters who are pushing systemd into Debian. These people are destroying decades of work and effort in a very short amount of time.

    GNOME: Once the premiere open source desktop environment, it became a complete laughing stock thanks to GNOME 3. Despite a majority of the user community expressing complete and utter disapproval of the direction it took, the developers ignored them and released an unusable product. GNOME 2 users fled to KDE, Xfce, LXDE, and other environments rather than use GNOME 3.

    Firefox: Once the premiere open source web browser, it became a complete laughing stock thanks to Firefox 4 and later. Despite a majority of the user community expressing complete and utter disapproval of the direction it took, the developers ignored them and released an unusable product. Firefox users fled to Chrome, Opera, Safari and even IE rather than use Firefox.

    Ubuntu Linux: Once the premiere user-friendly Linux distro, it became a complete laughing stock thanks to Unity, Upstart and Amazon tracking. Despite a majority of the user community expressing complete and utter disapproval of the direction it took, the developers ignored them and released an unusable product. Ubuntu Linux users fled to Linux Mint, Debian and other distros rather than use Ubuntu Linux.

    And now we can add:

    Debian: Once the premiere Linux distro, it became a complete laughing stock thanks to systemd. Despite a majority of the user community expressing complete and utter disapproval of the direction it took, the developers ignored them and released an unusable product. Debian users fled to Slackware, Gentoo and even FreeBSD rather than use Debian.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Wednesday November 19 2014, @01:54PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday November 19 2014, @01:54PM (#117653)

      it became a complete laughing stock thanks to GNOME 3

      I cry foul in that GNOME was always a laughing stock, from day one. However, I may disagree in detail, but I agree in principle.

      There is a meta comedy that the reason the only linux desktops out there are running xmonad, awesome, xfce, is because devs don't dogfood and design by corporate committee, so obviously all "desktop environments" suck badly.

      What I like about firefox is there's addons and support to roll back most (all?) of the stupidity. You can actually get something useful if you disable everything done in the last couple years. Its not even hard to do.

      There is a hole in the FOSS development model where once you get jobs and corporate support moving in, when the job is done, the only way to keep collecting filthy lucre is basically to F stuff up. Imagine if some poor bastard's paycheck depended on never "finishing" the ls command. I guarantee we would be utterly unable to list the contents of directories at this time, although we'd have alpha blending, animations, cloud support, and social media (Click here to tweet this filename!)

      • (Score: 2) by Nerdfest on Wednesday November 19 2014, @04:41PM

        by Nerdfest (80) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @04:41PM (#117741)

        FireFox is a good example of why systemd is a bad idea. It used to be that things designed with the Unix philosophy did their job well, and you added more functionality. Maybe you'd have problems with the additions, but the underlying layers were simple, and very solid. Simplicity is a big contributor to the stability. With FireFox you need to extend it to *remove* functionality. This doesn't seem to me to inherently be a good idea for stability.

        • (Score: 2) by cafebabe on Wednesday November 19 2014, @05:44PM

          by cafebabe (894) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @05:44PM (#117759) Journal

          Modularity works really well on a CLI when commands can be chained into a long pipe. It doesn't work so well in a GUI in which monoliths are the default. However, if it was easy to write software at the granularity of the Edit menu or smaller then modular GUI software would be feasible.

          --
          1702845791×2
          • (Score: 1, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @06:57PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @06:57PM (#117803)

            Dont take this the wrong way... It is just something I have wanted to rant about for awhile

            Modularity works really well on a CLI when commands can be chained into a long pipe.

            I hate junk like that. It is modular but fairly unreadable gibberish usually. Just today I spent 30-40 mins decoding some crazy command line someone sent me. It is not always clear what particular parameters do. There is little continuity between programs so you end up digging out docs for every little thing. For example in one program 's' may mean recurse sub-directories and 'r' means turn the text red. Then in the next program 'r' means recurse and s means something totally different unless you use capital S.

            I can hang with the best CLI wizard out there but it really seems like command line pipe is a really badly abused interface. I look at the way it is used and think there *HAS* to be a better way. But I am drawing a blank (that may be a good thing :) ). GUIs usually make things a bad click fest. Input files/memory is 'hidden'. Scripts sorta of do it but then you have to think in context like a programmer (which I can do as well). So I grumble and use it thinking there must be something better.

            I am just not sure. It seems 'wrong' in some fundamental way that I can not put my finger on. Stuff like systemd I can see *why* they did it. Scripts are brittle in subtle ways. But in essence they are super simple. Yet the chaining of events creates a giant storm of bad in/bad out sometimes. The idea is a good one. But the method they went about to foist it on everyone is bad (simply ignoring what everyone was saying). Instead of taking what was there and extending it (like the system was designed) they threw it all out and basically said '20 years of scripting is garbage'. It is the same reason everyone abandoned xfree86 when it was convenient. There was an opportunity here to really make linux way better. Instead it is a bunch of infighting and a 50/50 split if you care or dont. It will be 10 years before whatever systemd ends up being, that it finally calms down and people undo the damage and creates a decent consistent startup/service interface out of it. Better consistency is one thing linux could do much better with.

            Thanks for the time letting me rant.. I am off to debug a startup issue on an embedded linux system.... Hopefully it is not a hardware issue (which means deracking 20 hds and weeks of RMA hassle from 8 states away).

            • (Score: 2) by Nerdfest on Wednesday November 19 2014, @07:13PM

              by Nerdfest (80) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @07:13PM (#117806)

              What you're complaining about is more an API problem than an architecture problem though. You can have a good architecture and a bad API (as you describe with some command line parms). I'd prefer to have that than the opposite. It's hard to fix a bad architecture.

              • (Score: 2) by Arik on Thursday November 20 2014, @12:51AM

                by Arik (4543) on Thursday November 20 2014, @12:51AM (#117925) Journal
                Too bad I dont have mod points, but that was a very good post. Concise, to the point, and very insightful.

                This is what the systemd proponents just cant seem to wrap their heads around. A bad design is a bad design, no matter how beautifully executed.
                --
                If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?
              • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 20 2014, @03:29PM

                by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 20 2014, @03:29PM (#118131)

                You can have a good architecture and a bad API

                I see what you are saying. But that still just does not seem right. Jamming things thru the CLI or thru stdin just seem wrong to me. They are very useful tools but it seems fraught and easy to create poor API.

                I am a big believer of datastructs first. If you design your data properly the API usually comes out of it quite cleanly. To your architecture point. Yet the way data is moved around seems clunky to me for some reason. I am not saying it is bad. It just seems weird and not natural.

                I cant put my finger on it. To use a quote from the matrix 'it is like a splinter in my mind'. It is like we are using the wrong interface for data movement. We are overloading meaning which creates confusion. Until something better comes along I will continue to use the crap out of it :)

                It's hard to fix a bad architecture.
                I agree... Which is why I am calling systemd a missed opportunity. It was an opportunity to remove one thing I see as very clunky in the 'distro wars'. The startup process. Each distro basically had their own versions of these scripts. Lots of redundant work just for the sake of being 'different'. Not necessarily better/worse, just different. It is one of the reasons many blew up on the idea. As it is part of the identity of the distro they picked. The systemd guys however cant seem to go back and fix what they have and are playing with polishing the brass on the rails of the titanic. They have not created a consistent interface, they 'grew one' then added in some weeds. If they get their interface right the other parts would fall naturally out of it and they would not have tons of work ahead of them. They could then go on and fix/create other things instead of farting around with how the system boots up. Which frankly is a minor part of my computer usage (at least it better be).

            • (Score: 2) by cafebabe on Wednesday November 19 2014, @07:53PM

              by cafebabe (894) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @07:53PM (#117824) Journal

              For example in one program 's' may mean recurse sub-directories and 'r' means turn the text red. Then in the next program 'r' means recurse and s means something totally different unless you use capital S.

              That irritates me too. I wish that -R and only -R was recurse. I think the most annoying examples are within the suite of aircrack-ng utilities. Even the second generation of a bunch of commands released together don't use consistent parameter conventions. However, if I make the comparison with GUI software, menu shortcuts (such as Alt-H for Help) are equally inconsistent.

              Stuff like systemd I can see *why* they did it.

              I assume your background is weighted towards Windows or MacOS. All I see is technical debt [soylentnews.org], Not Invented Here [soylentnews.org], "WTF is RFC5452? [soylentnews.org]" and "Do you hate [google.com] disabled people? [youtube.com]"

              Yet the chaining of events creates a giant storm of bad in/bad out sometimes.

              Computer pioneers usually had a mathematical background, so stuff like y=f(g(h(x))) was bandied around without having to consider implementation details such as exception processing. However, when foo | bar | baz is stateful or starts spewing garbage, it falls outside of this mathematical paradise.

              It will be 10 years before whatever systemd ends up being, that it finally calms down and people undo the damage and creates a decent consistent startup/service interface out of it.

              We just cannot determine what it will be yet and that alone makes it unsuitable for deployment on stable systems. Regardless, deployments will be cracked. Repeatedly. This isn't an academic issue or an opportunity for schadenfreude. Some of those systems may contain my private information and your private information.

              --
              1702845791×2
      • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Wednesday November 19 2014, @09:26PM

        by maxwell demon (1608) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @09:26PM (#117854) Journal

        I cry foul in that GNOME was always a laughing stock, from day one.

        I disagree. Gnome 1 was great. I've used it by choice, on a distribution that defaulted to KDE. Gnome 2 was a big step back, but I kept using it due to inertia. But then there came Gnome 3. My inertia is not without limits.

        --
        The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 2) by hendrikboom on Wednesday November 19 2014, @10:07PM

        by hendrikboom (1125) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday November 19 2014, @10:07PM (#117872) Homepage Journal

        Well, the ls command is huge:

        hendrik@notlookedfor:~$ ls -l /bin/ls
        -rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 121032 Oct 29 23:47 /bin/ls
        hendrik@notlookedfor:~$

        There must be something useful in all those K. Anybody know what?

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @11:16PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @11:16PM (#117893)

          It's probably statically linked, so it includes libc and other library code which adds to the size.

          It's done that way so that you can still use it, even when systemd has fucked up your system so badly that dynamic linking isn't working properly, or the shared libraries aren't available because systemd has refused to mount the partition or device containing them.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @07:04PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @07:04PM (#117804)

      That's awesome...but we need to add a little "Red Hat" in the mix, if you get my drift.

    • (Score: 1) by curunir_wolf on Wednesday November 19 2014, @09:35PM

      by curunir_wolf (4772) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @09:35PM (#117861)

      GNOME: Once the premiere open source desktop environment, it became a complete laughing stock thanks to GNOME 3. Despite a majority of the user community expressing complete and utter disapproval of the direction it took, the developers ignored them and released an unusable product. GNOME 2 users fled to KDE, Xfce, LXDE, and other environments rather than use GNOME 3.

      It's telling that the GNOME devs have actually shown themselves to be less responsive to their user community than Microsoft, which did a major reversal on their Windows 8 release by pushing out Windows 8.1 and Update 1 as quick as they could.

      Worse than Microsoft. What an indictment!

      --
      I am a crackpot
    • (Score: 2) by HiThere on Wednesday November 19 2014, @10:02PM

      by HiThere (866) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @10:02PM (#117866) Journal

      Once is coincidence,
      Twice is happenstance,
      ...

      Something systematic is happening.
      My guess is that maintaining a system that isn't supported by Red Hat is too expensive if you want a complete desktop. Now as for why Red Hat is acting that way....well, Bob Young retired quite awhile ago now.

      --
      Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
    • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Friday November 21 2014, @08:32PM

      by urza9814 (3954) on Friday November 21 2014, @08:32PM (#118589) Journal

      People have been referring to GNOME as a "Fischer-Price UI" since at least 2002. It's always sucked.

      Firefox *was* crap, it's actually a lot better now. Remember when Chrome was first released? Remember how it blew Firefox totally out of the water? These days Firefox is a bit slower, but Chrome is a lot more unstable. I prefer Firefox, but they're just about even in my book.

      Ubuntu? Really? That crapfest? It wasn't until ~4 years ago that I was *ever* able to get Ubuntu to install successfully. To this day I still point new users seeking a simple, GUI-based system towards Mageia instead of Ubuntu because I've had nothing but bad experiences with Ubuntu, and nothing but good ones with Mandrake/Mandriva/Mageia.

      You might be right about Debian though.

  • (Score: 2) by CRCulver on Wednesday November 19 2014, @01:31PM

    by CRCulver (4390) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @01:31PM (#117640) Homepage

    As an Arch user on all my personal machines, this doesn't mean a whole lot to me; I've been on systemd for a while, though I reserve the right to bitch about it.

    I don't really understand Arch's move to systemd. Didn't Arch start out as a Gentoo-like distro for people who like to really get into the nuts and bolts of their system? You'd think that they would be keen on maintaining old-style init scripts, because one can easily track how it all relates together through plain text. Systemd replaces all that with a series of poorly-documented binaries, with command-line options and config files significantly different from the hacking tradition Arch started out with. Is there some history online of why Arch choose systemd so enthusiastically?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:13PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:13PM (#117664)

      Is there some history online of why Arch choose systemd so enthusiastically?

      Unlikely, the maintainers repeatedly refused to even discuss the issue. From what I recall though, the decision was almost entirely "justified" with a "where will you get udev from" when the systemd cabal took udev hostage.

    • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:21PM

      by The Mighty Buzzard (18) Subscriber Badge <themightybuzzard@soylentnews.org> on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:21PM (#117666) Homepage Journal

      Not that I ever saw.

      --
      My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 2) by arashi no garou on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:26PM

      by arashi no garou (2796) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:26PM (#117670)

      I stopped using Arch right before they switched to systemd, but not for that reason (in fact, back then I was looking forward to trying out systemd to see what it was all about). I stopped using it because, when they switched from a great bare-bones installer to an obtuse, script based sado-masochistic method, they outright said they switched to keep anyone new from being able to use Arch. Their attitude was "it's our private club and we don't want anyone else in it". The new installation method wasn't difficult for anyone who was used to the Arch Way; I mastered it pretty quickly. But when I went to the forums to search for some specific issue that I had ran into, I came across a discussion that told me everything I needed to know about the Arch maintainers; basically, they are so anti-user and against anyone new discovering Arch that they will bully and mock people who ask questions until they give up in frustration and drop the distro.

      I promptly removed Arch from my machines and went back to Slackware (and Raspbian on my just-acquired Raspberry Pi), as to my mind this was wholly against the spirit of GNU/Linux and open source. Later I found that they had completed the switch to systemd, and by that time I had had a chance to research it enough to be doubtful of its merits. But, I still wanted to try it out, so I grabbed the Arch Linux image for the Raspberry Pi, complete with systemd, and gave it a spin. On the whole, everything seemed more or less the same as pre-systemd, but for one thing, I noticed performance was even worse than before[1], and I also noticed that systemd commands using systemctl didn't always do what you told them to. For example, I'd tell it to stop and then start a process, and about half the time the process wouldn't actually stop, even giving it several seconds to do so. It was issues like this that led me to research systemd further outside of the Raspi environment, and after weighing the pros and cons, I found that I didn't want it.

      So, to answer your question, I wholly believe the Arch maintainers switched to systemd in an effort to further alienate the casual Arch user. Take a once great distro, hobble it with an obtuse installer, hobble it further with a broken and unfinished init system, and top it off with hateful dismissal of anyone not in the inner circle, and you have the true Arch Way.

      _____

      [1] The Raspberry Pi's performance as a desktop OS, even on the command line, is already so abysmal that anything slowing it down further is immediately felt. Pre-systemd Arch Linux was the fastest modern OS on the Pi (classic OSes like RiscOS and Plan9 run acceptably well on it, modern GNU/Linux not so much), but post-systemd Arch Linux is dog slow, even slower than Raspbian. The performance difference was striking, and was the reason I looked deeper into systemd instead of blindly accepting it.

      • (Score: 2) by urza9814 on Friday November 21 2014, @08:55PM

        by urza9814 (3954) on Friday November 21 2014, @08:55PM (#118599) Journal

        Did you try Antergos at all? Basically it's just Arch with the old installer restored. I did the whole manual Arch install a couple times and it wasn't too bad, but they screwed the wiki regarding how to set up disk encryption at one point and I decided to just start using Antergos instead of wasting any more time screwing around with it. Quite happy with Antergos though.

        Of course, it *is* still Systemd if that's a problem for you. I don't like it, I've got four line shell scripts with features Systemd is lacking, but it's not bad enough to push me to Slackware or Gentoo yet. Used Slackware for a while back around '06 or so...it was nice, but I just don't have time for that anymore.

        • (Score: 2) by arashi no garou on Friday November 21 2014, @10:39PM

          by arashi no garou (2796) on Friday November 21 2014, @10:39PM (#118620)

          Of course, it *is* still Systemd if that's a problem for you.

          Unfortunately, it is. I don't fall into the "hate systemd for...um...reasons" camp, but until a) the political furor surrounding it calms down and b) it has matured and proven itself as superior to what we have now, I'm going to avoid using a distro that contains it. Besides, I more or less grew up on Slackware; it wasn't the first GNU/Linux distro I tried but it was the first that I understood and was able to learn from, instead of curse at. I've had at least one machine running it in some version since 1999. I'm still going to get up to speed on FreeBSD in the mean time, as it's been years since I dove into it deeply.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by morgauxo on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:33PM

    by morgauxo (2082) on Wednesday November 19 2014, @02:33PM (#117680)

    I'm mainly a Gentoo user myself but I still see this as bad. Debian is everywhere! It's used in most servers. It's the base of most popular desktop distros. It's usually the base of hobbyist toys like Raspberry Pis. It's usually the first Linux ported to new platforms. Even if you never use Debian yourself if you are using Linux you are benefitting from development which happens by or in support of Debian users. Sure, Debian users who are unhappy with this decision can go to other distributions. Or, they can even go to a BSD which at least is still an X'nix. But.. All those people could have switched a long time ago. There was something they liked better in Debian. Switching because Debian has changed for the worse must mean that something is lost.