LinuxQuestions.org
Did you know LQ has a Linux Hardware Compatibility List?
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Reviews > Distributions > Debian
User Name
Password

Notices

Search · Register · Submit New Review · Download your favorite Linux Distributions ·
 

Debian SID
Reviews Views Date of last review
32 102143 04-01-2010
spacer
Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
100% of reviewers $15.00 9.7



Description: SID (still in development) 'unstable' release from Debian.
Meant to be for the debian developpers but a lot of people use it.
Keywords: debian sid apt dpkg deb


Author
Post A Reply 
Old 06-16-2003, 04:38 AM   #1
iceman47
 
Registered: Oct 2002
Distribution: Debian, Free/OpenBSD
Posts: 1,123

Rep: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros:
Cons:



pressed the return button by accident :/
 
Old 06-16-2003, 04:56 AM   #2
iceman47
 
Registered: Oct 2002
Distribution: Debian, Free/OpenBSD
Posts: 1,123

Rep: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: apt as it should be, great community, new software
Cons: sometimes programs can be broken


Debian has always been my favorite distro, mainly because of it's apt system and the social contract (see www.debian.org).

Debian can be as easy or as hard as you want.
Most configuration can be done by the dpkg-reconfigure system, but you don't need to use that if you want to configure your system the hard way.

SID offers lots of new software that Woody & Sarge don't, which is an extra plus for me.
Apt is simply brilliant, most people know apt now, since the main distro's are using it too now.
I started with potato and dist-upgraded to SID
(meaning all packages are being replaced by newer ones giving a new and updated system).
It's not that bloated as some other distro's as you're really in control what gets installed.

The dark side of SID has to be that packages can be broken at any given time you update as it's the developpers' version.
Most of the time it gets fixed in a matter of days though.

SID does the trick for me but I won't recommend it to someone who's just starting with GNU/Linux, but you have to try it at least once in your life :)
 
Old 06-25-2003, 07:51 PM   #3
masinick
 
Registered: Apr 2002
Distribution: Debian, sidux, antiX, SimplyMEPIS, Kubuntu, Mandriva, Fedora, Xandros, Arch, and many others
Posts: 560

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: The ultimate in new and flexible software
Cons: Occasional broken packages


Software from the Unstable (SID) binary software tree of the Debian project is about as up to date and flexible as you can get. It is prone to occasional failures, particularly packaging failures, but I've often found that if something is really badly broken, it's usually fixed within a week or two. On the rare occasion that something gets really badly broken, it's usually possible to back off the things that have been changed and install a more stable version.

I use a combination of stable, testing, and unstable Debian software, but most of the time I use the unstable tree as my base, though I installed my core system from a commercial distribution, Libranet, which I also highly recommend.
 
Old 06-26-2003, 09:29 AM   #4
Nigel_Tufnel
 
Registered: Jul 2002
Distribution: Debian, Kubuntu, Arch
Posts: 116

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: Apt-Get is simply the best package management tool avialable for linux today. The documentation is pretty extensive and users are very willing to help you if needed.
Cons: The install can be a little scary for newbies but not as daunting as Gentoo! But you only have to install once!!


I've tried Red Hat, Mandrake, Slackware and Gentoo. I would of stayed with Slackware if it had the package system of Gentoo. Well, the closest thing to that is Debian. Apt-Get is simply the best package system in linux right now. There's a huge catalogue of applications that you can install very effortlessly. I don't want to wait 8 hours for my applications to compile! The user base is very large and people are very willing to help you. Also, the distro offers 3 flavors depending on how 'fresh' you want your system to be. I use 'unstable' and have had very few issues with it. It has become my de-facto distro since January of this year. I love it!
 
Old 07-24-2003, 03:08 PM   #5
KneeLess
 
Registered: May 2003
Distribution: Debian GNU/Linux 3.0 Sid, OpenBSD 3.5
Posts: 190

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: $15.00 | Rating: 8

Pros: Apt-get, Lot's of Apt Sources (HTTP, FTP, CDROM, etc.)
Cons: Not a lot of hardware support


A lot of people don't like the Debian install, but I like it a lot. It's not pretty, at all, but it automatically boots into a menu driven interface, and has step by step install, with little tid bits of information just incase.

Apt-get is by far the best part of Debian. You are able to upgrade all of your packages with a command as simple as "apt-get update".

Gotta love ease of use. But SID crashed on me twice, for unknown reasons. It's fun, but stick to Woody or Sarge for now.
 
Old 08-06-2003, 03:26 PM   #6
lowkick
 
Registered: Aug 2003
Distribution: Debian
Posts: 4

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: apt-get, community
Cons: setting up might be difficult without Linux experience



I started with Redhat7.3 and then moved on to Debian. The install system is not as bad as they say, but I had problems with getting X up. Would have been impossible without any Linux experience. Yet, when everything is configured, Debian rocks. Apt-get is awesome, dselect is awesome, everything just works. Maintaining is easy.

 
Old 10-03-2003, 05:21 AM   #7
praveenk
 
Registered: Oct 2003
Distribution: Debian GNU/Linux SID, FreeBSD
Posts: 59

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: 'apt' and 'dpkg' tools - The most powerful package management tools. **Stability & Security**
Cons: Not suitable for newbies. (This cons is slowly fading away...) Timespan between releases (Stable releases)


I started my GNU/Linux life with Redhat GNU/Linux 6.2 and then started using Debian GNU/Linux 2.2. There is a lot of improvements now in the Debian distribution and is becoming more and more user-friendly. If Debian finishes the GUI installer module, a lot of newbies can also start to get their hands dirt on Debian. Hats off to Debian community.
 
Old 11-07-2003, 09:37 AM   #8
evil_Tak
 
Registered: Oct 2003
Distribution: Debian/unstable
Posts: 85

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: Upgradability, social contract
Cons:


Debian is my favorite distribution of those I've used, including RedHat, Mandrake, SuSE, Slackware, Caldera (eww), and LFS. I also prefer it over NetBSD, OpenBSD, and FreeBSD.

As so many other people have mentioned, Debian's package management really shines, and the unstable distribution gives users cutting edge software easily installed, easily configured, and easily removed.

I've been running Debian/unstable on all my desktop machines since roughly 1998. There are several reasons for my initial switch to Debian: with other distributions, I found that I had to do almost a complete reinstall to upgrade my software; I hated the nightmare of software dependency tracking; I hated how commercial some distributions were becoming. Debian was the answer to all my problems.
 
Old 11-17-2003, 07:38 PM   #9
leonscape
 
Registered: Aug 2003
Distribution: Debian SID / KDE 3.5
Posts: 2,313

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 10

Pros: Upgrading with apt
Cons: Installation (But you only ever do it once!)


Debian is my current distro, after using quite a few others, and its the one I'm sticking with. There are many reasons for this and I'll go through a few of them.

1. Upgrading ( or apt-get is my Hero).
The one thing most of the people I know, who've tried Linux complain about upgrading and installing software. I did as well. Dependancies wrong versions etc.
This area is almost completley taken care of by apt-get. It isn't simply the tool its self that makes it work. The Debian community constantly update, check, and sort out many of these problems for you, packaging and re-packging costantly to make sure everthing works.
There are currently over 13000 packages in the repositry, and its a rare piece of software that isn't in there. The impression I got was Debian packages where rare because most of the software sites offer RPM's. The fact that the Debian community does the packaging themselves sailed me by for a while.
There is also one more thing tats very important. Version upgrades. Debian does these without complaint. The fact that other people are surprised when their distro upgrades without breaking something, is the opposite of a Debian users expectations, nuff' said.

2. Standards.
Debian follows more closely the standard way that software designers expected their software to work. The most obvious example of this that springs to mind is GRUB. the grub manual says that the way to set up the menu is to look under the /boot/grub/ directory for a file called menu.lst. In debian their it is, in Redhat they tell you to edit a file /etc/grub.conf.
X set up for Mice and keyboards is standard, Redhat use a file in /etc/sysconfig/mouse.
This means when something needs fixing and sorting out, the standard approach works in Debian, for others you need a Distro specific approach.

3. Kernel Compiling.
This is the easiest distro to compile a kernel in. Handling all the messy work for you. make-kpkg is a very powerful tool. and once finished a simple dpkg -i. and your sorted. Removing a kernel is also a breeze. simply apt-get remove.
Even third party modules (Like the Nvidia Drivers) are all taken care of, and no need to mess about with the .run file from Nvidia.

Their are many more, but simply I have more control over my system than in any other Distro. I can try things out remove things without worrying what will break (apt-get tells you what else would have to be removed). Control is in the users hands. I like having control.
 
Old 11-26-2003, 07:05 PM   #10
Drago
 
Registered: Nov 2003
Distribution: Arch linux
Posts: 13

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: up to date, stable, runs quick
Cons: broken packages (sometimes)


Most would be scared of the "unstable" name for this release of debian, but come on, it's actually one of the most stable distros i have ever used! With the apt system and the up to date packages you get the best of both worlds. The only thing that sort of pissed me off was the fact that sometimes there is the odd broken package, this was usually fixed in a matter of days though.
 
Old 12-14-2003, 03:27 AM   #11
wartstew
 
Registered: Apr 2002
Distribution: Slackware, Ubuntu, Debian, Maemo
Posts: 464

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: None indicated | Rating: 8

Pros: Largest software base, easy to keep current, very customizable
Cons: No sane installer exists, steep learning curve.


The term "Unstable" unfairly drives people away from this version of Debian. Unless you are very new to GNU/Linux products and are running a mission critical machine, I would not fear the "Unstable". Sid has these advantages of other Linux distros:

1) Largest software base: At the time of this writing my package manager reports over 13,000 software. No more do I have to do kludge installs of packages meant for other distros into mine and struggle to make it work right, or compile them from scratch. With Debian Sid, the very latest software I want is just an "apt-get install" away.

2) Superior Package Management: Although I think Linux package managers are still far from perfect, the Debian set of tools from the primitive "dpkg" all the way up to the point and shoot GUI "synaptic" seem to handle the tangled web of the inter-dependencies of the GNU software tree better than anything else I've tried. Except for a few cases where Apt threatened to un-install most of my system just to install a single new app that conflicted with it, I've had very good luck installing, upgrading, and removing packages from my systems as they evolve while keeping them quite stable most of the time.

3) Easy to build a customized system: The base install is fairly small, well under 100 megs if I remember. From there it is easy to just install the apps you want and the package manager will automatically install dependant packages then proceed to configure things accordingly. Again, it's not perfect, but I've been able to easily construct nice "tight" installs where everything works the way I want and yet can be easily kept up to date using Debian. When I've tried this with other distros (like Slackware), I ended up with a very unstable system with lots of broken apps and services.

4) Debian has many nice touches: Once you know about them, (which isn't easy or obvious), there are nice structures and tools to do things like keep the menus in all your window managers up to date while allowing customizations, and tools to select preferred apps from a list of installed "alternatives". I haven't seen these things working this well in other distros.

5) Debian really is free: Debian is not a child of some commercial company that is wishing to turn a profit with it someday. Debian is likely to be around long after many of those others have become financial failures. Also commercial distros tend to discourage downloadable updates because they would rather sell you a nice shiny new shrink-wrapped box set distro every year. Some also tend to do sometimes frivolous customizations just to set them apart from others and to "lock" you in to their company. You won't find these games played with Debian.

6) Finally, Sid is actually quite stable: Some of the worst problems are that things just don't install right. Just wait a day or so and try an upgrade on that app again and chances are everything will be magically fixed. With most OS's, it seems that the more you install software and do updates on them, the more unstable the system becomes. Not so with Debian: My first Sid install runs much better now than when I first installed. It has seen many sessions of "apt-get" initiated software updates.

The biggest downside of Sid is for the most part, there exists no installer for it that I know about. It seems that in the Debian development process the installer to a distro is typically the last thing that gets done before it becomes the "testing" or "stable" distro. Unless I am missing something (which is likely because I still consider myself a Debian newbie), you generally have to install the base system some other distribution (like Debian's "testing" or "stable", or run a live CD version of Debian and go through a fairly convoluted (to newbies anyway) procedure to get the thing installed. As previously pointed out by others however, you really only have to do this once, from then on it's just updates.

Because of the above problem and all the special Debian structures that support some of the nice Debian specific utilities (like the "update-menus" and "alternatives" system), I found Debian to have a rather steep learning curve as compared to other Linux distros such as the much simpler Slackware. Although the documentation is always improving, it is not always obvious where it is or what you should really be looking for in the first place. For this reason, I wouldn't recommend Sid for newbies. Instead I would recommend it to seasoned Linux users that have gripes with poor package upgrade handling from their distro or its smaller software base. I would also recommend it to those wishing to build smaller customized versions of GNU/Linux while still being able to keep it up to date easily. I would certainly recommend it for desktop use because of it's large software base and ease of updates.
 
Old 02-10-2004, 01:41 PM   #12
rmanocha
 
Registered: Oct 2003
Distribution: Debian SID-->fully content-->Love APT,kernel 2.6.4
Posts: 327

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: apt-get,layout,social contract and more
Cons: not for newbies(my opinion)


I think debian is better than any distro out there...better than slackware,Red Hat,Mandrake,etc....
The apt pacakge manager makes life so simple that i think installing software in linux is even more painless than installing stuff on windows.
the layou of the directory tree,the config files...the default packages...etc. work great and really help you learn a lot about the system and how it is running.
the thorough testing packages go through before making it into stable or even unstable makes me feel even better.
the only con of this distribution lien in its install process....the text install process can be intimidating and nerve shatering.also to get SID you have to use apt-get dist-upgrade etc....which makes life evn more complicated..but i can say this...once you get it...you start loving it within the first day of you using it.
knoppix comes close to debian sid...but i personally did not like it much..mainly 'cause of it tons of apps and a not so clean and professional look given by a clean debian install...i think MEPIS scores higher here.
 
Old 02-11-2004, 08:47 AM   #13
sirphoenix
 
Registered: Aug 2003
Distribution: Debian Sid/Sarge
Posts: 37

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 9

Pros: apt-get; stable; free;
Cons: slow updates


I am quite new to linux. It was very difficult for me to find my prefered distro and i will stay at debian.

apt-get is a great and powerful tool to update your system and install packages. as well tasksel for new users and dselect (i am using kpackage)

as soon debian is running it seems very stable for me.
i got problems installing the woody distro because its using a very old kernel and the via-rhine module wasnt working correctly, so i had to update to sid/sarge (its more work without network).

the only contra is the slow update process for packages. if you dont need up to date modules it doesnt matter much. i am still missing some drivers for wavecards and isdn interfaces (maybe i have to search more for an solution).

even compiling and installing a new kernel works great with make-kpkg which will create your own kernel.deb package for install.

another thing which scared me off other distros: debian seems to stay at standards. gentoo and suse have different ways for configuring your system so i dont like it. suse seems too much like windows... as i am lazy guy i wont learn much in suse, just click and work with it.
 
Old 03-01-2004, 07:36 PM   #14
basket_case
 
Registered: Oct 2003
Distribution: ubuntu (Dapper Drake)
Posts: 12

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 9

Pros: scaleable, contained, highly flexible, high standards for included items, the first (and still, imho best) proper package management system
Cons: currently not as flashy to install, debian is aimed more at people who actually care what is under the hood than your average slacker who just wants a free OS on his / her box, without even knowing what speed chip they have


There are distributions that try to address one or another aspect of linux deployment on the desktop and / or server. Some of them even succeed at doing so. Then there is debian, which is a one-stop solution for whatever needs you have for your machine, be it server-based, with SQL/web/php/whatever needs or desktop-based, with user-friendly applications and much prettiness.

An obvious pointer at the integrity of the underlying system afforded by the package management tools dpkg, and the wrapper apt is the number of distributions that have spawned off of debian. You don't warrant children from other companies and sources if your product doesn't have a leading edge.

The high standards set by the debian maintainers mean that even subscribing to the "unstable" branch of debian pretty-much guarantees the latest of the best of the best. In fact, the term "unstable" refers more to the stability of package versions than their contents: expect regular updates to the cream of the linux community's coding crop with simple commands like "apt-get dist-upgrade". If typing at a console seems like too much effort, then invest some time into a package management manager like Synaptic. If the flux of new packages seems a little unsettling (and hey, let's face it: for a person migrating from "the other side", regular system improvement is not a concept that has been founded in the normal order of things: instead, a subscription to chaos seems to be the order of the day. Debian tends, on the other hand, towards a state of order, completely oblivious of any presiding laws of thermodynamics), then stick with the "stable" release (currently named Woody) and be 100% sure that you have a rock-solid system that is close enough to the cutting edge of linux technology without being at the bleeding point.

My vote will always be with a system that allows for the flexibility, power and sheer solidarity offered by debian. I have tried other distros (Red Hat, Mandrake, Corel; though unfortunately i haven't had exposure to suse or personal experience with gentoo (but 4 days for an install seems a little over-th-top ;p)), and have not found what i wanted in them.

In the same breath I would want to warn the new user: be prepared for a learning experience. And be prepared to read. The linux ethos of making the system decisions yours and thus placing ownership of the system firmly into your hands is prevailent in the debian architecture. But if you read, even from the messages displayed by apt and installer scripts, you will always be steered in the right direction. Just take some time to read the information given to you.
If you don't feel you have the time or energy for this endeavour, go try Mandrak linux. The installer is really friendly, and quite powerful. When you want a sleek, meaner machine, switch to debian.

My only restraint from marking debian with a perfect 10 is the intimidation factor imposed by the installer. Not that I have a problem with it, but your average person would benefit greatly from an installer like that of Mandrake's, granting a powerful, gui-based partition editor; asking if auto-resizing on existing windows partitions can be done to minimise the pain of a windows--to--dual-boot--to--linux transition that naturally flows for most people who are exposed to the power and functionality of the free operating system and the collection of fantastic tools and productivity-enhancing programs that are to be found in most distributions.
Still, if there were intermediate points in the scale, debian would have rated a 9.9: the friendly interface is really the only thing stopping debian from taking over the world.
 
Old 03-03-2004, 08:18 AM   #15
albertfuller
 
Registered: Oct 2002
Distribution: Knoppix Debian
Posts: 2

Rep: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation: Reputation:
Would you recommend the product? yes | Price you paid?: D/L | Rating: 10

Pros: all-encompassing, net-centric, package management, effortless to upgrade, software generally installs properly configured, it is really free
Cons: can't think of any


I came to Debian through Knoppix. Yes, Knoppix is one beautiful Debian installer. It autodetects hardware fantantically. And with just few clicks (and a clear partition strategy) I had Knoppix riding on reiserfs partitions - sweet.

-------------------------
Steps For Newbies
-------------------------

Know that the classic Debian distro, although it is the front door is not the only door into the building. I suggest Knoppix install

Secure your box - a firewall, or as is my preference a router with built in dhcp support (instant network)

Search Google and leant how to setup apt so you can take control of /etc/apt/apt.conf

Search Google and learn how to build a (nice large) /etc/apt/sources.list

Make an indepth study of all package management software: apt-get, apt-cache, aptitude, wajig, feta, (I suggest you avoid Synaptic)

Now how difficult is that.
 
Page:  1 · 2 · 3 More Items




  



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:21 AM.

Main Menu
Advertisement

My LQ
Write for LQ
LinuxQuestions.org is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
Syndicate
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
identi.ca: @linuxquestions
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration