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Re: SEUL: Common SEUL/e-linux tools needed

Something has got to be done about the ballooning "reply to all" here.
Everyone who's paying attention is on the seul-project list.

On Thu, 8 Jan 1998, Bruce Perens wrote:

> Well, if SEUL wanted to derive from Debian you'd not have the
> organizational problems. Especially since SEUL seems to have settled

Yes, we would.  Whether we derive from Debian OR from Red Hat we still
have the problem that they'll upgrade things that we won't want to, and
we'll want to upgrade things that they won't want to, and we'll have
different programs installed to boot; and the installers and likely
package versions will be different; and keeping in sync with a major
distribution is just a general headache.  I think that Erik likes the idea
of staying with RedHat up through 5.x and then diverging; maybe resync
with the last version of every major number, maybe not depending on how
good our maintainers are.  :)

> on the 100% free software issue and would thus warrant full cooperation
> from Debian and possibly even some financial support from SPI.

I don't think we've settled on that at all.  I certainly haven't settled
on it.  I don't see a reason for it.  It's a religious issue and is
completely irrelevant to the goals of SEUL.  People who want a
distribution composed of 100% free software may as well use Debian.
That's not what we're here for.

Obviously, free (GPL, Artistic, BSD, public-domain) software is better.
But if we run into a useful program that, say, only wants to be
distributed in binary, then we distribute it.  This is not YALD (Yet
Another Linux Distribution).  It's a way to make linux EASY TO USE and
competitive with Win95.  We have to keep sight of this!  We need lots of
useful apps, an easy interface, an easy install, and good hardware
support.  That's really it.

> Producing a good Linux distribution is _difficult_. It's a lot easier

Yeah, but the hard work is done already.  Maintaining an offshoot
distribution of an actively maintained distribution is much easier than
maintaining a whole distribution yourself.  Most RedHat packages WILL drop
in to SEUL.  But a lot of them won't, or will install in the wrong place,
or something.  It's really not that hard.  I maintained a Slackware system
for several months and managed to keep up with the important changes; Pat 
Volkerding is a genius but a rather slow one. :)  That's by myself.  We
really aren't as incompetent as all that.  :)

> You'd also have the advantage of being distributed on Debian CDs (tens
> of thousands sold), Debian's 80 FTP sites, its intercontinental web
> network, etc.

I thought we had already decided not to be a version of another