[linux-elitists] Are we Dead Yet? (or "For every sprinkle I find, I shall kill you!)

Martin Pool mbp@sourcefrog.net
Tue Jan 25 17:09:49 PST 2005

On 25 Jan 2005, Don Marti <dmarti@zgp.org> wrote:

>   To: Joe Example <joe@example.com>
>   From: Package Maintenance Service <package-daemon@xenu.example.com>
>   Subject: Out-of-date software on xenu.example.com
>   The file /etc/package-manager/available-warez is
>   more than 3 weeks old.  The system xenu.example.com
>   will shut down in 1 week.  Thank you and have a
>   nice day.

This is for the case where the machine can't reach the update servers?
That particular case sounds reasonable, though perhaps if the machine
is totally isolated from the network it's OK for it to stay out of

Trying to contact the owners of the machine is problematic.  As
someone else noted, in small organizations the single administrator
position may turn over every year.  Such a mail is likely to either
bounce or be ignored (because the person no longer works there, or
because the person who gets it doesn't understand it.)

This is a problem with the (perhaps otherwise reasonable) model of
charging a fee for access to an update service.  If the machine is
quietly humming away the organization may have trouble understanding
that it needs to pay the subscription.  After all, people forget their
hardware maintenance, and that ought to be more obvious.

There are a number of such edge cases, but in principle they can be
solved.  The default should be to assume the user is not going to do
anything.  If they do show an interest or want a different policy then
that can be accomodated.


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