Thanks smoreau for your feedback, that’s always helpful!
With this release, it is somewhat a turning point:
There is this notion, that +1 always means better and less bugs, so people constantly look for updates and higher version numbers and the latest stuff.
But as with the recent kernel issues, this is not true, especially in a non-controllable, vibrant eco-system like FOSS-land:
Since everything is a moving target, constantly evolving and updating, no one really can say if updating X (let’s say KDE) won’t affect other parts or applications to become LESS useable and even break in core functionality.
So for the first time, we froze a kernel, patched various parts (oxygen, firefox to make it even work with its own appstore, try to install an app from mozilla store under Ubuntu - you can’t!), and didn’t update to KDE 4.10.4 which was available at that time, becuase of risk of regression bugs.
So to decide on a temporary environment for the distribution and figure out a stable state for all the key parts to fit in and work with least friction is really becoming harder and harder with each release!
With this in mind, we also decided to take the pressure out of the user and DISABLE automatic update notification, as that really is giving a false sense of if the user updates, it will be BETTER, when in most of the cases, it turns out to be NOT!
It’s a new philosophy, which also goes back to using ALSA instead of PULSE, because the latter is still not ready in a not to underestimate number of cases (intel HDA).
We know there will be some cases that there are hiccups here and there even in the environment Netrunner chose for 13.06, so we rather explain the situation every distro is in nowadays, as to give a false impression that any distro can claim to work nearly perfect on any machine under any circumstances, as no one really can, because no one really controls all the parts under one umbrella (I guess Canonical is trying exactly that with their own inventions like Mir and Unity) like MS, Apple or Google do with their systems.
So Netrunner is all about being transparent and honest to its users and making them understand the situation instead of a marketing scheme to hide any issues.
Im so glad to find this distro!
I really applaud this decision to go for stability instead of mindless version number chasing.
I am a brand new user of NR & it seems to me to be very modern and up to date enough.
Superb balance of software here.
Really beautiful art work to guy’s!
On my most bleeding edge gaming PC the only other distro that comes close is Sabayon 13.06 but honestly Netrunner pips it in quality & ease of use.
The decision to rip out Pulse Audio I applaud also!
Thank you! So much better than the endless sound problems of other distro’s using PA.
I really hope this distro continues in its present fashion.
Do you guy’s take donations?
That is a very interesting post. So interesting indeed that I would make it more prominent on the forums (like an announcement), or maybe even speak out the philosophy on the main homepage. Thanks for communicating this. It sounds like a really wise decision, and one that differentiates netrunner substantially from other distros! I am sure this is a lot of additional effort, but we appreciate your efforts!
One question regarding the update strategy: is it possible to only allow automatic update notifications for security updates (bug fixes) for the currently installed version, without allowing update notifications for new versions (higher version number)? Not sure this question makes sense…
Starbuck, I wrote an email to the Linux Outlaws podcast so that they mention the new distribution release, and asked them what they think of this new strategy. They were very sceptical about disabling automatic update notification, since many updates are security updates. While I see your point, I think that they are right. Obviously, the best would be to enable security updates that close vulnerability holes while disabling updates to new versions with new ‘features’. Since that - I believe- is not possible, I think it would be good to get more opinions about your new strategy on this forum. I suggest you create a new forum topic discussing this, and that you mention this also on the official release page.
Thanks again for all your efforts!
PS: I opened a new thread with this topic, so no need to reply here.