Future (RPM based) linuxen: RHEL, FC, WBEL, Mandrake, SuSE?

bscott at ntisys.com bscott at ntisys.com
Fri Apr 16 19:45:01 EDT 2004


  [ Sorry for the delay in replying; as I've said elsewhere, I've been
busy... ]

On Sat, 3 Apr 2004, at 4:18am, tom at buskey.name wrote:
> I've been a fan of Redhat in the past because it was A) fairly current, B)
> easy to download, C) easy to keep up to date and D) well supported by 3rd
> party vendors.
[...]
> RHEL fails with B.  I also feel that Redhat isn't going to fix this ...

  ... especially as Red Hat Software considers it a feature, not a bug.

> WBEL can fail by not being as complete as RHEL ...

  Well, as long as RHS keeps to their pledge to be fully Open Source
whenever they have the ability to do so, WBEL should be an almost exact
clone of RHEL.  The only things missing should be the Red Hat trademarks.

  Of course, if RHS does a complete switch-a-roo and starts shipping major
amounts of non-free software (in the FSF sense) in RHEL, that would change
things.  My crystal ball is still in the shop, so I cannot predict if RHS
will be doing that, or what the reaction would be if they did.

> ... and D as most 3rd party vendors won't support it

  Well, it depends on the vendor, and what level of "support" you want.

  Many vendors don't really care about Free Software or not, or what you
run, so long as they can work with it.  Vendors like RHEL because they can
work with it.  It's got a nice, long release cycle; a reasonable "standard"  
configuration; and a company (RHS) which they can lean on.  All this stuff
matters for development, QA, SCM, and that sort of thing.  That sort of
thing doesn't care if your /etc/issue banner says "Red Hat" or "White Box".

  So, if your vendor just wants to get things done, WBEL should work just
fine.  OTOH, if your vendor is the type to make an issue out of WBEL vs
RHEL, just because they can, that's an issue.  In general, I don't like
vendors who pull stunts like that, so my stance is to explain to said vendor
that if they keep it up, I will be finding another vendor.

  If that's not an option, that means you're already being held hostage by
your vendor, so you should be used to IT extortion.  Pony up for the RHEL
subscription, in that case.  :-)

-- 
Ben Scott <bscott at ntisys.com>
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