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[ale] Gentoo: the good, the bad, the ugly



I'm going back to Debian as soon as they get KDE3 rolled into sid. Gentoo is a 
pain (I dont care about building from source) and while its portage system is 
nice, I like apt a lot better. Debian does a lot better job with 
configuration and making sure their packages all work too.

Bill


On Sunday 25 August 2002 17:05, Byron A Jeff wrote:
> Well after nearly 9 years as a Slackware user I'm finally starting to see
> the inevitable bit rot. My test Slack 8.1 install was a disaster. X didn't
> work, applications crashing, and the like. And finally the lack of true
> package management has worn me down. Tracking application dependencies by
> hand was becoming an increasingly difficult chore.
>
> So after hearing a lot of good things, I decided to give Gentoo a spin. I
> actually have a working system going with XFree86 4.2 and IceWM.
>
> I just wanted to give some initial thoughts after my first install:
>
> The Good
> --------
> * Portage, Portage and Portage, plain and simple. Packaging the dependency
>   management, download, compile, and install all together. Wonderful.
>
> The Bad
> -------
> * Well there can be too much of a good thing. I'm a firm believer of the
>   layered abstraction model where every layer of abstraction is provided
> and you pick the one of your comfort level. Well the Gentoo install pretty
> much poured acid on that model and melted everything back to the base
> layer. While none of the installation process is particularly difficult, it
> would be so much simpler if there was a simple script that guided the
> install and issued the commands for you. Not necessarily at the highly
> abstracted level of a RedHat install, but something akin to Slackware's
> install scripts which helps you along without hiding what's going on
> underneath.
>
> * Along those same lines I think that there needs to be an further
> extension to the staging process where a base workstation can be dropped
> in. Or where groups of packages could be choosen for compilation. There
> doesn't seem to be an easy way to browse and select packages available in
> the Portage system. Though as I pointed out in the Good section, once you
> pick a package, it's ready to go after the emerge command. The same is
> needed for the rc-update process: a list of what's active and a list of
> what's available.
>
> The Ugly
> --------
> * No KDE man! emerge craps out on arts. Now mind you that I have -arts in
> my USE variable in /etc/make.conf. Mind you that I did an emerge rsync to
> get the latest tree. Mind you that I really can do completely without sound
> at the present time (as I don't have a sound card installed). But it's
> preventing the compilation of the rest of the KDE package.
>
> BAJ
>
> ---
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