Rolling release - do things break often?

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Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby Chriswaterguy on Thu Mar 17, 2011 10:01 pm

The Download Linux Mint Debian page says "LMDE is compatible with repositories designed for Debian Testing or Debian Squeeze." - I think that needs to be updated to "Debian Wheezy".

What have your experiences been with the rolling release - do packages break often? My only experience with this was with CrunchBang Statler at the end of 2010 - it's based on Squeeze which was "Testing" at the time. Now Squeeze is stable (and ironically I got problems with audio and tethering only after I got the updated "Stable" version... I haven't had a serious go at fixing them yet).

So, I was wondering if things are changing more quickly and breaking more often now in "Testing," since Wheezy is still in the early stages of the Testing phase?
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby tdockery97 on Thu Mar 17, 2011 10:05 pm

So far the only breakage I've had (and everyone else) was when an update came through for libav1 that wasn't compatible with VLC, and it uninstalled VLC. That has since been fixed when the newer version of VLC came through. If I recall correctly it was fixed within about a week.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby wayne128 on Thu Mar 17, 2011 10:29 pm

My experience on rolling release, of various OS..

Yes, Testing on LMDE broke with vlc that tom had mentioned on earlier post, resolution is equally fast.

I played with Debian Sid, Aptosid, it had a lots more update, almost daily.
It broke not too many time, the last one being my careless mistake for not reading before hitting enter key. It was saying 'experimental' ' removing kde', yet in that monent I went ahead and eventually finding kde was totally removed and replaced by Debian Fluxbox. haha that is the thing about learning curve.

Well, it took me just 8 minute to have a fresh reinstall and learn a lesson of how to read carefully before hit enter.

But then I benefit much more, I got lots of new stuff to play with, LibreOffice ( much faster to start up ), new kernel, now already second version of 2.6.38...latest version of some programs and so on.
No venture , no gain? I think.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby CiaW on Fri Mar 18, 2011 12:02 pm

I hadn't rebooted for a few days between a couple rounds of updates, and decided to reboot yesterday. My 'main distro' is LMDE64 bit. When I rebooted I'm not sure why, but it just brought me to a Mint10 'splash screen' similar to the login screen but no login box. Keyboard and mouse were unresponsive, thankfully if it's needed I have Debian Squeeze and lmde32 bit as well as Fedora 13 available to boot, also... So I did a hard reboot and got to a login screen this time, and logged in to the desktop but my trackball (logitech, usb) wasn't working. Checked the connection, it's fine. I ctrl-alt-F6 to a terminal, logged in and did an update which brought in some firmware updates and a couple other things, rebooted again and all is well now. Trackball and keyboard working, etc.

Do things break often? Not for me, that was actually my first real issue since installing the 64bit when it was released in Dec 2010. Before that I was using the 32bit for a few months without issues, but it was still leading up the the release of Squeeze. Overall I really like it, but sometimes a bit of patience is required.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby zerozero on Fri Mar 18, 2011 1:38 pm

My experience with LMDE has been very peaceful, one glitch some time ago with xorg and that's it; i wouldn't classify the vlc or the LO issues as breakages - things break when we loose all KDE or GNOME or when xorg is gone and all is left is a blinking cursor.
LMDE has been very stable, even my install tracking sid has been stable;

Unstable and mad was Cooker, we never knew if the next update was the one to throw us off the boat, and it did a few times but was soooo funny :lol: cooker is cutting edge as probably no other distro around, in the day something is released hits cooker and sometimes makes a dependency mess all around :) it's a very good school, we can learn a lot about Linux in there, but then one day i just got enough of Mandriva's politics and deleted both cooker install :mrgreen:

Now i try to ease my thirst with LMDE-sid (very stable, very quiet) chakra (a bit more wild) and Fedora rawhide (this one is promising to replace cooker :) let's see)
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby Chriswaterguy on Mon Mar 21, 2011 12:27 am

Thanks for the answers! I'm downloading now.

zerozero wrote:Now i try to ease my thirst with LMDE-sid (very stable, very quiet) chakra (a bit more wild) and Fedora rawhide (this one is promising to replace cooker :) let's see)


Looks like you're more adventurous than I'm planning to be :-). I love the idea of being on the edge, but in practice I don't get around to spending the time to get a lot of stuff to work... a few minor breakages I can handle though. Anyway, will try LMDE and see how it goes. Thanks again!
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby vrkalak on Mon Mar 21, 2011 12:29 am

I have "never" had a Linux OS break on me . . . that was not self-inflicted. :lol:

Definition of a Linux Adventurer:
They are not scared to try something new or different.
They are willing to pick a random button and click it ...
To open a terminal and type gibberish they do not understand and hit 'enter'.
To type endless key words into Google, until they find relative direction.
Then, to try each method until one works or until they "b0rk" their OS so bad they have to start over.
To do a 'fresh' install, again.
They are not scared to screw up ... they just do it.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby Dyfi on Mon Mar 21, 2011 1:52 am

I have run lmde since the first iso was available - and had to reinstall just once - my own fault. Lesson learnt.

Now regularly do partition backup using Clonezilla which is a much faster method than making hard drive image or having to reinstall again.

Updating has been a bit of a pain to grasp but once learnt I now find lmde excellent. I think regular updating will minimize conflict issues - we are all on a learning curve.

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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby kwevej on Mon Mar 21, 2011 2:18 pm

vrkalak wrote:Definition of a Linux Adventurer:
They are not....


Vrkalak, do you really have to paste that into every single post? Maybe it's your nature - being too proud of yourself.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby hinto on Mon Mar 21, 2011 3:53 pm

There's no tsclient and I cannot install uex due to: Error: Dependency is not satisfiable: libgdk-pixbuf2.0-0 (>= 2.21.6).
That being said, I installed tsclient from stable and the tar version of uex. LMDE is really like a breath of fresh air, esp since I can use smxi to manage the dist-upgrades (kernel installs, and nvidia driver installs).
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby wh7qq on Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:09 pm

hinto wrote:There's no tsclient and I cannot install uex due to: Error: Dependency is not satisfiable: libgdk-pixbuf2.0-0 (>= 2.21.6).
That being said, I installed tsclient from stable and the tar version of uex. LMDE is really like a breath of fresh air, esp since I can use smxi to manage the dist-upgrades (kernel installs, and nvidia driver installs).
-Hinto


Careful using smxi for graphics installs on LMDE. I just finished a fresh install followed by a huge dist-upgrade and added a liquourix kernel via smxi and all went well but it all turned to brown stuff when I tried to upgrade the nvidia driver.

Part of the problem relates to a weirdness in LMDE where it wants to be in runlevel 2 instead of 3 for text mode. Like when I would do a Ctrl+Alt+F1 and it would just go to a blinking cursor. Been using smxi since it started with sidux and my hope for LMDE was that I could maintain it with smxi but that seems futile at this point. My install work is pretty much down the toilet at this point. You can see my track in the smxi forum on www.techpatterns.com.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby hinto on Mon Mar 21, 2011 5:19 pm

I have a completely different experience. Just did a fresh install of LMDE-64 bit. I installed smxi. kept everything as testing. did a dist-updgrade. installed the newset nvidia driver. then installed the latest Liquorix kernel. installed vmplayer (and the patch). nothin' but net (except the 2 caveats I mentioned before). This is on a Dell Optiplex 760 (core2 quad, 8 gigs of ram)
BTW... I've been using smxi (formally the h2 scripts) since the kanotix days ;)
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby vrkalak on Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:50 pm

kwevej wrote:
vrkalak wrote:Definition of a Linux Adventurer:
They are not....


Vrkalak, do you really have to paste that into every single post? Maybe it's your nature - being too proud of yourself.


I shall try to restrain myself in the future . . . :P
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby h2-1 on Tue Mar 22, 2011 2:01 am

we've been chipping away at that bug that is affecting a tiny subset of users, the runlevel issue, to be clear, is that Debian testing defaults to runlevel 2 for all services, including the desktop/X

So the problem is that the desktop, if X fails due to some unknown issue or bug, is just locked. The ideal solution to avoid these support headaches is to leave the debian defaults at 2, that's easier, and make the gdm3/desktop start up level 3, or 5, I use 3 myself since I figure there's no point zipping through 3 and 4 to get to 5, or however it works. There is no real difference I think either way.

Then you can help the user by getting them to boot in grub to runlevel 2, where you login at command line and do what you need to do, then start gdm up once it's done.

The two cards so far that are reporting this issue are nvidia 5500 and 6200, but I have no details beyond this, we found one glitch, fixed it, and that's the last consistent glitch i've heard of except these two cases. I'm sure it's happening to other people. I'm not hearing any reports like this from sid or aptosid users, for what that's worth.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby marlar on Tue Mar 22, 2011 3:52 pm

I had the VLC issue which was not a big deal for me.

However, today I had the first fatal upgrade break afte dist-upgrading yesterday as I couldn't boot up. I just got a black screen when X was about to start. And I was not the only one: viewtopic.php?f=141&t=68729

Renaming xorg.conf solved it although this means that I am probably using the generic driver now instead of ATI's driver.

If such issues happen too often, I will have to freeze my installation as I use my computers professionally and cannot afford being down for a long time.

PS. If anyone could give me a clue why this happened, I would be glad to know.
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Re: Rolling release - do things break often?

Postby hinto on Tue Mar 22, 2011 5:07 pm

It's also nice to note that if they break, then they are fixed rather quickly, too.
I ran on a single installation of Debian SID (kanotix then migrated to sidux) for about 6 years for daily development work, using smxi to manage it. There were only about 2 hiccups during that time. 1) When Debian single sourced their 32 bit and 64 bit source repositories and 2) The change to Xorg7. Interestingly enough KDE3 to KDE4 went off without a glitch.
Read the warnings that smxi provides and read google if thing get borked. They usually aren't too bad to fix if things get broken.
As I recall 1) uninstalled some packages that I needed (fixed by re-installing) and 2) X wouldn't start and I got a black screen startup (fixed by running vesa for about a week). I run a dist-upgrade (through smxi) about every 1.5 weeks.
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