[GLLUG] Linux environment for software development

Nix nix at esperi.org.uk
Mon Sep 22 23:41:07 UTC 2014

On 19 Sep 2014, Christopher Hunter verbalised:
> I tend to use Debian, because it's the closest to "plain vanilla". However, since we've recently become a "Mint" household, I'm
> going to see if all my favourite tools will work.

Take care. I tried to install Mint 15 on a box earlier this year (a few
weeks after release) and found it utter hell. The installer crashed with
a Python error if you tried to manually configure more than none
partition (reported on the Ubuntu bugtracker in *2008*, still unfixed);
when I got past that, it installed an EFI boot partition in conjunction
with an MBR boot sector (yeah, that's gonna work); once I managed to
figure out wtf was going on there, I found that the install I ended up
with refused to use more than two monitors out of the attached three --
which two varied randomly -- and the drivers and kernel were out of date
enough that it couldn't accelerate the card at all, and given that this
was a Radeon NI that is not very impressive. (The kernel it shipped with
was at least half a year out of date.)

I wanted to make it LVM-atop-RAID, but after the guided installer
crashes it appeared I'd have to do it *all* by hand and hope this didn't
weird out the installer too much, and decided not to.

Oh, and then if you wanted halfway up to date packages, well, you
couldn't get them: massive gratuitous conflicts if you tried to pull in
a later repo, and in a throwback to Red Hat they wanted you to wipe the
whole thing and reinstall if you wanted to upgrade to Mint 16 when it
came out, 'cos they don't know how to build packages competently. Yeah,
right, like I'm going to do another install after *that* experience. To
add injury to insult, the whole installation was done to provide a
stable platform to run virtual machines on, but not even QEMU worked
properly (frequent crashes, of course no debuginfo packages were
available and even the sources weren't all there so there wasn't much
chance of figuring out the cause): VirtualBox was a dead loss and I
didn't even *try* Xen.

Deeply unimpressed.

I went back a couple of weekends ago and installed Debian testing. It
went utterly flawlessly, just as I'd expect of Debian :)

NULL && (void)

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