Re: [dev] Suckless (*NIX|*BSD) Distribution?

From: Jimmy Tang <>
Date: Mon, 22 Jun 2009 09:02:00 +0100

Note: the following is not intended as trolling material, but it is just
my own views and experience of running hundreds of machines in
production and from running a few distros on different machines.

On Sun, Jun 21, 2009 at 11:29:56PM -0400, Jorge Vargas wrote:
> I have to totally agree with the Gentoo is not for racers part. In
> fact for servers if I ever manage a server again. I'll probably run
> gentoo on it. Mainly becuase

I guess everyone has different views on gentoo being a good distribution
or not for servers. certainly in my experience of running servers,
gentoo is fun, and has lots of new stuff to play with. I can see why
people like/dislike it

> 1- you install only what you want

this is an obvious advantage for gentoo. but with diskspace being so
cheap these days, I really couldn't care if the server that I installed
to run httpd on also installs a few hundred more megs of *crap* given
that my system disk is going to be at least 80gigs in size, and I have
access to more storage as I need it. In a work where diskspace is cheap,
its often better to let the distribution people build the packages imho.
so you don't have to worry about it and its dependancies.

> 2- you build from source (this is good! for security)

why is this good? a large proportion of people who read the code probably
don't know too much about it, or to understand it on it being correct. and
just because you build from source doesn't mean its good you are still
relying on the packagers and or upstream people for fixes anyway.

> 3- SELinux is really good in gentoo.

good :) it's also apparently quite good on ubuntu, RHEL, centos and

> 4- Going to dev versions of needed (for patches for example) doesn't

I think this point is particularly important for gentoo users, patches
are great for new features and security fixes, but more often than not
(at least in the past when I last looked at gentoo) many were advocating
to update to the latest version in the portage collection for bug fixes
and security updates. which relates to point 2, IMHO its often not a
great idea to update versions to get bug fixes and security patches. I
think in the linux/free and opensource software world things change too
fast, and updates as opposed to security patches/fixes just break stuff
on production machines.


Jimmy Tang
Trinity Centre for High Performance Computing,
Lloyd Building, Trinity College Dublin, Dublin 2, Ireland. |

Received on Mon Jun 22 2009 - 08:02:00 UTC

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