[linux-elitists] What to do about cluebatting such companies, that require possibly *YEARS* old Distros

Rick Bradley roundeye@roundeye.net
Wed Jan 26 15:26:52 PST 2005

* Aaron Sherman (ajs@ajs.com) [050126 18:12]:
> I read to the end of this, and still never found the point where you
> described the benefit of the original thesis: "I [...] am disgusted with
> companies that are stuck in the "Pre-Fedora" Era [...] on "Turbolinux"
> [or] SuSE v8.*"
> I understand why smooth deployment is a good thing, and would not DREAM
> to argue against it. He didn't say and I wasn't replying to a suggestion
> that smooth deployment was good. I was replying to the idea that there's
> something "disgusting" about slow system upgrades when regular in-house
> and mission-specific software upgrades are much more valuable.

Oh, damn.  I was supposed to make this topical?  Sorry about that.
Seriously, I just headed off on an enjoyable tangent.

I believe it's important for outward facing systems to be maintained to
the point where availability is reasonably assured (primarily because of
the risk of security exploits), but internally the cost-benefit analysis
almost always shifts to a more conservative stance due to the vetting
process necessary to deploy reliably (part of the overhead of the
production environments I was yammering about).  Deployments indoors are
going to move more slowly simply because it's more profitable, usually,
to focus elsewhere.

> Rick, once again I'll ask the question: show me an example of one
> company that does better than their competition (not just "is big"),
> where they do and their competition does not upgrade operating system
> software more frequently than every 3 years.

I can't show such a thing definitively, but even if I could it wouldn't
prove much since there are so many factors that affect business success.
I've argued this elsewhere, but it's vastly more important that people
use open source (or Free) systems over proprietary systems, and even
that bottom-line impact can be too small for many people to measure over
the short run.

> So, why this push to put "Pre-Fedora" OSes behind us so damn fast? What
> is this urgency?

Probably a combination of OCD, weariness from supporting too many
releases, and angst over logfiles showing too many compromised old
systems out there.  Got me.  I just took a 5-year old (FreeBSD) system
out of service the other day (here at the house) when I moved some disks
around.  Had I not wanted to reorganize the network storage setup
significantly it might have been running for another couple of years.

 http://www.rickbradley.com    MUPRN: 4
                       |  just waiting for them
   random email haiku  |  to move this >way... Welcome
                       |  to Weakly county.

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