Linus' Systemd Indifference, PCLOS Review, and Rebecca

by Ostatic Staff - Sep. 15, 2014

Today in Linux news Linus Torvalds tells Sam Varghese that he's Switzerland in the Systemd war as Paul Venezia is back to clarify his "split Linux in two" post and Linuxgrrl takes the community pulse. Jesse Smith reviews PCLinuxOS 2014.08. Clem has announced a change in naming protocol at the Mint project for upcoming 17.1. And finally today, Jim Zemlin talks about what it takes to be a successful Open Source project.

The systemd controversy has taken an interesting turn with today's interview of Linus Torvalds by Sam Varghese. Torvalds told Varghese "When it comes to systemd, you may expect me to have lots of colourful opinions, and I just don't. I don't personally mind systemd, and in fact my main desktop and laptop both run it." Torvalds said today's systems, both hardware and software, are too complicated for the old Unix "do one thing and do it well" and "everything is a file" philosophies. But he does agree with me about the logs saying, "I'm still old-fashioned enough that I like my log-files in text, not binary, so I think sometimes systemd hasn't necessarily had the best of taste." They also discuss a few other topics as well such as Btrfs, Git, and even the Torvald children's computer experience, so see the full interview for all that.

Speaking of systemd, Paul Venezia is back to respond to comments to his earlier post on splitting Linux into separate server and desktop distributions. He said:

I believe the time has come when a major, dedicated, server-only Linux distribution is needed. This distribution does not maintain any desktop packages or dependencies -- and is not a distro that merely offers a different default package set for desktop and server use cases.

To be even more precise, I do not want the consideration of desktop usage to impact my servers. Historically, Linux distributions were essentially servers that could run as a desktop if desired. Lately, however, a preponderance of Linux distributions focus solely on the desktop, and desktop requirements are taking precedence there and in other distributions. This changes the server-first approach, and that needs to be recognized.

Katherine Noyes gathered some of the opinions to which Venezia was responding. She found one that said, "This is a solution in search of a problem" and another that said this spitting-in-two thing has already been done. But I think blogger Alessandro Ebersol hit the nail right on the head when he said, "If they would only let sysinit or upstart or whatever be, there would not be so much backlash against them. But, no, Systemd must be the Highlander and cut the heads off everyone else." If users still had a choice, systemd wouldn't be an issue.

In other news:

* Initial impressions of PCLinuxOS 2014.08 (in today's Distrowatch Weekly)

* Linux Mint 17.1 codenamed ‘Rebecca’

* The True Measure of a Successful Open Source Project