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#1 2012-07-27 20:11:27

dcbdbis
Member
From: Aurora, Colorado
Registered: 2004-09-10
Posts: 226

Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

Now that the nouveau and NVidia junk has been  sorted out, I'm back to Arch. (I use it for my consulting business, when the graphics work that is)

I want to say Thank You,  to the developers for all their hard work.  They get yelled at all too often, and get thanked way too little.

I'm an older guy (Vietnam Era vet), and I appreciate this distro, more than the others because of it's rolling release nature, and by it's giving control to us, the users, in what is or is not included in our individual systems. As the date to the left of this post uindicates, I am no noob to Arch.

The only times I've had to use something else is when the graphics sub-system was broken. I had to work, and the CLI did not allow me to do that work. I freelance to make up the difference in income that VA disability doesn't cover.

I know about the finger pointing at NVidia, Xorg, and choose not to assign blame. I just don't have enough technical info, and I really hate pissing contests anyway, so I choose not get involved.

The Nouveau drivers in my experience have been unusable in a production environment (especially CAD). I have an NVidia GTX-560Ti card, and on the Nouveau site they don't support it well. 400's and 600's, but the 500's seem to have been passed over for what I will assume are legitimate resons within their dev community.

You see I use a commercial CAD package I purchased for Linux. I need the graphical sub-system to not break, or I have a work stoppage. Yes, I now dual-boot with Winsucks with the same CAD package installed therein, so work can continue in case of breakage......now..... ( at one time Arch was the only OS installed, until an NVidia driver update broke the entire system and I missed work deadlines). I would welcome the day when I can return to the paradigm of only Arch being installed. Windows 8 is a disaster (in the preview edition I VM'd). I will refuse to use it, as I do Gnome 3.*. (I need a traditional desktop where I can work, with multiple workspaces, and not have to play with a smarphone. I acknowledge that some users prefer this. So be it. I just don't want this paradigm shift shoved down the throats of traditional users.) I prefer MATE over XFCE. More flexibility is the reason, more choices for me the user without having to do a lot of things by hand (hint = gtkrc editing). For now, I use XFCE.


Request #1 is this:

As updates go, I humbly request that a little more time and QA happen on the graphics level so "pacman -Syu's" don't break the GUI because of some issue with either NVidia, Xorg, or whomever. And in saying QA, I do not implicate the package maintainer, but am suspicious of NVidia releasing an update that screws the pooch, so QA means a little more testing on NVidia's/Xorg's latest updates before being released to the wild.

I would welcome the day when nouveau is ready for primetime, and I am saddened that NVidia is not cooperating with them. Considering the Nouveau dev's have had to reverse engineer everything, I'd say they've done a stellar job......but they are not there yet for those of us in a production environment, regardless of which distro one chooses.

I use Arch also becasue of it's currency, and therein lies the catch 22. Currency vs stability. I also use Arch so I do not have to reinstall every 3-6 months to get current packages, and wasting all the time it takes to install a new release and get it all setup the way one likes. I use Arch also because it gives me control over my system.

I'm just asking for a tad more attention to detail if possible, to the graphical subsystem when updates occurr. If I had the cash, I buy a "butcher machine" for the sole purpose of being a testing resource for Arch, but seing that I am disabled, cash is tight so I can't help in a meaningful way. And I am NOT blaming the NVidia maintainer. NVidia is just as guilty for not keeping current with xorg developments, etc. I just ask that if an NVidia update breaks things in testing. Warn us on the main page as you do for init updates, etc. Then don't release the problematic update to the wild, or if possible, give us workarounds to implement on our systems to keep us online.
//----------------------------------------------------------------------

Request #2 is:

Please bring the MATE desktop mainline. I've used it in Mint before returning to Arch, and with the GTK 3 libs, it performs well, is compatible with newer GTK3 based apps, yet maintains the traditional desktop for those of us who are business oriented. I left Mint becuase I could get the most current libs needed to run the latest updates of my CAD package, not at least, without butchering the system, and causing a lot of downstream headaches for myself. Ubuntu, Mint's parent is getting prety wierd in how they do things compared to a mainstream distro. Compiling many things manually and adding them to your system causes more downstream issues, than the ones you fix for your immediate problem.
//----------------------------------------------------------------------


I know that the latest packages may break something....That's part of the risk of currency.....I am just asking that new packages don't take the system down to it's knees. My definition of "System" = base system plus functional GUI in XOrg.

Yes, I review the main Arch news before I update. So I am not a "stupid" user of the distro where warnings are ignored, like some I read in the forums.

I realize that others may have had different experiences than me, and I by no means want to minimize those experiences in this post.


Again, I appreciate Arch...And I thank all the devs for their volunteer time and effort. Sincerely so.


Respectfully,


Dave


PS: The new install method: Not that hard. I used my netbook so I could read the wiki, while I was reloading my main workstation from scratch to check it out. And in about the same time, I had a new Arch installed. A few rough edges, but all easily fixed. Once the wiki gets fleshed out, I suspect all the rough edges will vanish into thin air.

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#2 2012-07-27 20:36:42

drcouzelis
Member
From: Connecticut, USA
Registered: 2009-11-09
Posts: 3,570
Website

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

dcbdbis wrote:

I humbly request that a little more time and QA happen on the graphics level so "pacman -Syu's" don't break the GUI because of some issue with either NVidia, Xorg, or whomever.

You can do a "test update" without spending any money: Create a 10 GB partition and install Arch Linux on it with the same packages you have on your "real" installation. Just wait to do an update until you have time to deal with possible errors.

dcbdbis wrote:

Please bring the MATE desktop mainline.

MATE is available through the AUR and through other repositories, as is mentioned on the wiki page. Is there a benefit to having it as part of the official Arch Linux repositories?

Last edited by drcouzelis (2012-07-27 20:37:51)

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#3 2012-07-27 20:45:15

dcbdbis
Member
From: Aurora, Colorado
Registered: 2004-09-10
Posts: 226

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

The reason I'm asking MATE to go mainline is quality. My experiences with the AUR is that the packages there can be of considerable lower quality than mainline packages, and full of hassle. Example: XFCE4 is available as a meta package. MATE is not. AUR packages are not automatically included in "pacman -Syu". So maintaining the packages from a user perspective is a genuine hassle.

As far as helping out on quality: You gave me an idea. I CAN buy a new HDD, install it in my hardware, and dedicate it to an Arch testing machine. Doing this I will have no issues with possibly screwing up my mainline drive by a mistake on my part.

I can do this and assist Arch in testing. It would be a small way I can give back to the community....

So whom do I communicate with to to get signed up for the testing process and how do I get involved?


Sincerely,


Dave

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#4 2012-07-27 20:56:53

drcouzelis
Member
From: Connecticut, USA
Registered: 2009-11-09
Posts: 3,570
Website

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

dcbdbis wrote:

XFCE4 is available as a meta package. MATE is not.

I think there are two meta packages in the unofficial repositories listed on the wiki page, "mate" and "mate-extra", so it should be pretty easy to install. And MATE is developed by an Arch Linux user, so they should be pretty official unofficial repositories. wink

dcbdbis wrote:

So whom do I communicate with to to get signed up for the testing process and how do I get involved?

I don't think there is anything official to do to contribute. You already are by contributing to the Arch Linux forums and the wiki. big_smile

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#5 2012-07-27 20:57:29

sitquietly
Member
From: Moscow, Tennessee
Registered: 2010-07-12
Posts: 216

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

dcbdbis wrote:

.....As far as helping out on quality: You gave me an idea. I CAN buy a new HDD, install it in my hardware, and dedicate it to an Arch testing machine. Doing this I will have no issues with possibly screwing up my mainline drive by a mistake on my part.....

When your working Arch partition/hardrive happens to be at a "sweet spot" and you want to capture it onto another partition as a fallback system you can do the copy like this.  I've been keeping an "Arch Stable" partition and it helps a lot.

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#6 2012-07-27 21:02:06

jasonwryan
Anarchist
From: .nz
Registered: 2009-05-09
Posts: 20,061
Website

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

dcbdbis wrote:

So whom do I communicate with to to get signed up for the testing process and how do I get involved?


It is just a matter of enabling the [testing] repo(s) and subscribing to Arch-dev Public ML. See https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/Te … testing.5D


Arch + dwm   •   Mercurial repos  •   Github

Registered Linux User #482438

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#7 2012-07-27 21:05:05

dcbdbis
Member
From: Aurora, Colorado
Registered: 2004-09-10
Posts: 226

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

Helping out on testing seems simple enough! I'll procure the HDD and then sign-up. I'll connect it to my E-Sata port as I don't have any std SATA available on my MB. (4 HDD's for 6 TB of storage,  and two optical media)

And I already use rsync and love it.


Thanks!


Sincerly and respectfully,


Dave

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#8 2012-07-27 21:11:04

dcbdbis
Member
From: Aurora, Colorado
Registered: 2004-09-10
Posts: 226

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

Forgot to reply to the meta packages on MATE.


I'll look for them and give it a try. I don't see it in the AUR, but it is on the WIKI page after I enable a additional repo. I didn't read far enough to see the wiki (shame on me), and I didn't realize that MATE is dev'd by an Arch user.....That brings the credibility of the package up several notches. And if something goes really wrong.....I always have my existing XFCE desktop to fall back on.

THANK YOU!

Dave

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#9 2012-08-10 23:04:23

WonderWoofy
Member
From: Los Gatos, CA
Registered: 2012-05-19
Posts: 8,412

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

I see that this thread is a couple weeks old, but just to throw my couple of cents in, I used the MATE repo for a while, and it was great.  I really didn't run into any problems that weren't fixable.  Though I only used it for about a month or so, in that time I never saw any updates to the mate system or repo in general... I don't know what that implies about the frequency of maintenance, but it didn't seem to matter as problems were very minimal.  I eventually went back to my openbox setup and dwm, though not for any reason in particular.  I say try it out, you can always disable the repo and remove any foreign packages...

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#10 2012-08-10 23:46:15

FlyingHappy
Member
From: Cincinnati, OH
Registered: 2011-04-18
Posts: 187

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

Just out of curiosity, what CAD program are you using?

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#11 2012-08-12 12:47:34

scjet
Banned
Registered: 2011-07-23
Posts: 172

Re: Letter of Appreciate to Devs, and two requests

Re: "Install media 2012.08.04..."

...much better, thankyou.
smile

Last edited by scjet (2012-08-12 12:48:04)


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