“i disapprove of your text editor, but i will defend to the death your right to use it.” — voltaire
Critics and fans should be able to agree that devuan is an effort built on grandiose claims. the reason is simple: the claims made are grandiose. if devuan wanted to deny that, all that had to do is make more modest claims.
If you make grandiose claims, you are also going to create critics who love to point out how you fall short. you might just be ambitious enough to live up to them even partway– and in my opinion, devuan is not made entirely of claims. so far, it delivers.
I could side with the critics and complain that its too slow to support ascii, but my timing tends to be off.
When I’m about to tell the world that devuan is a scam after all (i never once thought it was built on lies, at worst exaggeration) they go and release the very thing ive been complaining was taking forever. ok, it still took too long– but i cant say it will never come.
Just to be sneaky, they sometimes release these updates a couple days *before* i complain they will never do so, meaning i should always check 5 minutes before i make these claims. ahem. if i dont, its because im perpetually tired of dealing with many of these people. yep, thats my excuse.
Now i dont get many friends with this attitude– fanboys would call me a traitor (or a critic) and critics would call me a fanboy. thats my reward for trying to look for the truth from as many angles as possible– it means im not in a camp, and thus have nowhere to camp.
That doesnt mean i dont know anyone on the inside. i dont have the privilege of talking to jaromil very often, but i believe he has always stood for the actual things he claims to. in other words, hes not a fake. you can read more about him at his wikipedia page, which was spitefully voted off the wiki island by as retribution for his co-founding of devuan and criticism of debian:
So far, i might sound like a fanboy trying to cleverly disguise his love as a critique. so for now, i will skip over the list of important things i believe devuan is doing right, note that i still use a devuan derivative (but the person running the devuan forum doesnt believe me, and i will talk about that!) and i will get on with the criticism.
i do want to say before it gets nasty, that there are people involved with devuan that i deeply admire, thank, and am grateful to. and devuan is very lucky to have those people on their team.
One of the accusations towards devuan is that its a secret cabal of pimply losers that either dont know what theyre doing or are actually lying to people. i mean thats sort of a cliche textbook accusation you can make whenever theres a disconnect between devs and users, which there usually is.
Its sort of like that old gilbert gottfried joke: “DID MARK SHUTTLEWORTH RAPE AND KILL A GIRL IN 1997?” if you ask people this ridiculous question over and over, people will start thinking that it might have happened.
Its just a string of words, it wasnt even “mark shuttleworth” in the original joke, it was originally aimed (entirely as a joke) at bob saget: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beck_v._Eiland-Hall
but i digress.
Whats my actual complaint here? it is actually quite difficult to climb the mountain of nonsense to get the devuan summit. if i didnt know people closer to it (i cant tell you their names, i took a secret oath) id swear they were all in a tower in switzerland somewhere– with tunnels and handshakes and front organisations.
Thats a decision made by the “veteran unix admins” and it obviously suits their purposes. but i am not directly bothered by this. anything that could ever reassure anyone about systemd surely applies to devuan as well– from the source repos to reverse engineering the binaries– folks, there are major security flaws in the source code that have gone unnoticed and unpatched for a decade, and now our cpus are vulnerable too.
If theres a cabal, we will find them. no, my actual complaint is that instead of dealing with the vua directly, i *and friends of mine who have not sworn by blood, and thus dont enjoy some of the privileges that i do* am generally expected to climb this mountain of bullshit anyway.
And the mountain is made of overzealous volunteers, some of whom are people i like, and many of whom are people i cannot begin to tolerate.
So if you dislike the “community presentation” end of devuan, im right there with you! its crap.
One of my informants however, has explained to me that people continue to find refuge in devuans community. what do i make of that? hopeless optimism?
I find hope in this, because if enough people find their way into devuan, this mountain of friendly faces and oversized egos is sure to learn some manners.
The forum is run by an aging ego-maniac who makes herself the arbiter not only of who gets to participate (i mean lots of forum admins do, eh? but none moreso in my experience) but indeed, the arbiter of all facts technical and trivial, despite not being able to verify (or discover) any of these facts herself without asking someone else.
To wit, it is not so uphill to get people to accept that a derivative-of-a-derivative of devuan is also (by definition) a devuan derviative– just as much as an ubuntu derivative is debian-based.
But the loophole is that if there is even a fraction of components from anywhere else (such as a handful of files from puppy) that its “puppy, not devuan” and therefore should not be listed.
This is an extremely spiteful, extremely arbitrary, extremely arrogant person who cannot be reasoned with under any circumstances. basically she is there to torture people with her nonsense and then reprimand them for not taking her shit. ive complained to her about her abuse of other people in the community, which she shrugged off as “we are friends and i can talk to him however i want.”
Yeah, i guess.
So if thats what you want from a community, go and support devuan. but i have a better idea, because you see devuan is debian 2.0 after all, and debian has spawned many communities and subcommunities over the years.
Start your own devuan community. it sounds like nonsense, because how can you run a forum without any serious connection to the people making the thing– but remember, the vua is on a mountian somewhere, hiding from the plebs. i cant entirely blame them, though i sincerely hoped they would drop that act by year 3 (ive used devuan that long– unless you ask on the devuan galaxy forum.)
Yes, march 2015, and ive used it since then. i also absolutely hated the “betas” that came out of devuan, but i figured “heck, theyre betas.”
I used the very first “pre-release” iso and for my own uses, it was better than the betas.
The best stuff devuan does is in their repos and infrastructure, and i dont care if they get it together with their isos so long as people are happy to take them and put them together into something usable.
So far, the derivatives are better than the thing theyre made from. i should get around to checking if thats still true– but to be honest, im past the point of caring.
Does that sound like a hardcore fanboy to you? if so, i cant change it.
This is still worth putting in context though. despite the present hopelessness of the community (i wouldnt send anyone i know there! thats the problem) there are still some good people in it.
Despite the present hopelessness, theyre still making progress and things are still happening (new users) that threaten to ultimately topple the shit-surprise that is here-and-there in devuans community.
And perhaps i really do believe, (i would hate that) but i still think debians worse. i wasnt posting emails to that horror show but i was watching with great interest. im not going back to debian, and im probably not going back to devuan either.
But do i think devuan will ever live up to their claims?
I dont know, i wont say “no” quite yet. in a way, i dont think it matters really? but i think theres a lot of potential, if we can just “drain the swamp.” (yeah, im trolling a little. theyve earned it.)
I also gave money to devuan, but that was a one-time thing. i absolutely belive they contribute something valuable, but i think of greater value is what other people upstream from me (and downstream from devuan) do with it. if you want to be a believer– skip devuan. watch what others are doing with it– unless its a forum!
Devuan is a three-year-old fork of debian– because there is no spoon.
But seriously, deuvan isnt an organisation (i mean, not in any way that matters to me at all.) to me personally, its just a factory that makes distro components from other distro components– and the components arent bad, and many of the people who use those components (myself included) arent all bad either.
Its the glorified middle-managers who are making themselves gateways to devuan that are the most trouble, honestly. and you dont need them, you just need to find the right people to talk to and avoid the heck out of the rest. if you think thats a little sad, i agree.