LinuxQuestions.org
Latest LQ Deal: Latest LQ Deals
Go Back   LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie
User Name
Password
Linux - Newbie This Linux forum is for members that are new to Linux.
Just starting out and have a question? If it is not in the man pages or the how-to's this is the place!

Notices


Reply
  Search this Thread
Old 08-25-2018, 06:33 PM   #1
Mulsimine
Member
 
Registered: Dec 2017
Distribution: Debian 9.5 Stable || DE: XFCE
Posts: 40
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 10
Question Debian 9.5 Stable, Question About Installing Non-Repository Software


Earlier today I was considering attempting to add the Debian Testing repository to my Debian Stable sources.list file. Upon researching it further I came across this bit of information about mixing software from Stable, Testing, and Unstable repositories:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Google Search Results
For what it's worth, the general advice I've always seen is "Don't mix stable with anything." Most of the mixed systems tutorials are for mixing testing and unstable.

The reasoning seems to be that if you mix stable with testing, very basic packages (like libc6) will require updates (in order to install software from testing), and once these basic packages move to testing, the whole system can drift that way.
This got me thinking. Do the dangers described in the above quote also apply to me going out and updating to the latest version of Dolphin File Manager? Stable is at 16.08.3-3 but the latest release on KDE.org is 18.08.0. If I go and grab that version, don't I run an identical risk as I do from grabbing the latest DolphinFM version from the Debian Testing repository itself?
 
Old 08-25-2018, 06:45 PM   #2
descendant_command
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,712

Rep: Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552
Yes.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-25-2018, 07:35 PM   #3
Mulsimine
Member
 
Registered: Dec 2017
Distribution: Debian 9.5 Stable || DE: XFCE
Posts: 40

Original Poster
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 10
So if I switched to Debian Unstable, to have access to bleeding edge software, should I still stick to only downloading from a Debian repository? Or would it then be safe to run the risks of obtaining updated dependency packages through non-repository downloads?

Reasoning: I notice that Dolphin is at 18.04, while the latest version is at 18.08. A big missing feature has been restored in 18.08 which is why I want it so badly. No idea how long it will take for it to show up in Unstable. As a newcomer to Linux I'm not sure if this is a Debian issue or a Linux issue or just a standard case of "use common sense and wait for the repository download to become available".

Last edited by Mulsimine; 08-25-2018 at 07:37 PM. Reason: added last sentence.
 
Old 08-25-2018, 07:44 PM   #4
BW-userx
LQ Guru
 
Registered: Sep 2013
Location: Somewhere in my head.
Distribution: FreeBSD/Slackware-14.2+/ArcoLinux
Posts: 9,405

Rep: Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006
if ya going to play like that until you get a grasp at what to install that will work without destroying your system to the point that it's be faster and easier to just reinstall it and start over. I do hope you got your system split out, / and /home so you may not end up forcing your hand into having ti maybe lose whatever is in our home dir. that said.

switching to Unstable to keep it "easier" to install and update, whatever you want latest and greatest, put (most) everything into unstable mode

you can/should be able to just keep stable, then install "3rd" party latest and greatest. the thing you end up doing it putting the responsibility into your own hands to keep it updated. the dependencies then may cause an issue due to other software needing the same, that is a case by case, from deb files and even if you go old school down to compiling from source then installing it.

Last edited by BW-userx; 08-25-2018 at 07:45 PM.
 
Old 08-25-2018, 08:17 PM   #5
descendant_command
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,712

Rep: Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552
Probably reading this:
https://www.debian.org/doc/manuals/d...g.en.html#s3.1
and this:
https://www.debian.org/doc/manuals/d...ic_precautions
might be helpful.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 12:45 AM   #6
Mulsimine
Member
 
Registered: Dec 2017
Distribution: Debian 9.5 Stable || DE: XFCE
Posts: 40

Original Poster
Blog Entries: 1

Rep: Reputation: 10
It is such a weird concept to me. Having to wait until my OS is updated before I can use new revisions of software. I'd like to understand more about how this works and why it works, Linux side. Is there any specific subject I should be looking into or searching for? I really need to find me a solid book on Linux itself. Not just a newbie introduction book, but something that really explains how it is put together and how it works. I'd like to understand more than just how Linux differs from Windows, you know? Thanks so much for the solid article reference descendant_command ^_-.
 
Old 08-26-2018, 12:58 AM   #7
descendant_command
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2012
Posts: 1,712

Rep: Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552Reputation: 552
This article is responding to the rise of “universal packaging” (snap, flatpak, appimage etc.) but along the way gives a good explanation of the reasons for “so many” different distro’s and the way software is, well, distributed.

http://kmkeen.com/maintainers-matter/
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 09:12 AM   #8
ondoho
LQ Addict
 
Registered: Dec 2013
Posts: 12,945
Blog Entries: 9

Rep: Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541
https://wiki.debian.org/DontBreakDeb..._FrankenDebian
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 09:45 AM   #9
snowday
Senior Member
 
Registered: Feb 2009
Posts: 4,667

Rep: Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulsimine View Post
It is such a weird concept to me. Having to wait until my OS is updated before I can use new revisions of software. I'd like to understand more about how this works and why it works, Linux side.
It is like buying an automobile. All the parts are tested to work together as a stable and reliable whole. If you buy a 2018 Toyota Corolla, and keep up with the recommended maintenance, your 2018 Corolla will continue to be a safe and reliable car for many years to come. Imagine that the new 2019 Corolla comes with the option of a turbo-charged V8 engine and leather seats. When you bring your 2018 Corolla in for an oil change, the mechanic doesn't swap your engine with a V8 and replace your seats with the leather version! Rather, they change the oil, fluids, and filters that are necessary to keep your 2018 Corolla running reliably, as it is. The driving experience is consistent and does not change over time.

Stable Linux releases are like that.

There is also a type of Linux called "rolling release" that might be more your style. Rolling release distros are constantly updated with the latest stuff. It's kind of like bringing your car to the mechanic, and they send you home with a very different car, every part upgraded to the latest available version. Debian Unstable and Arch Linux are popular examples of the rolling release model.

Last edited by snowday; 08-26-2018 at 09:49 AM.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 10:13 AM   #10
ondoho
LQ Addict
 
Registered: Dec 2013
Posts: 12,945
Blog Entries: 9

Rep: Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541Reputation: 3541
Quote:
Originally Posted by snowpine View Post
Debian Unstable and Arch Linux are popular examples of the rolling release model.
with one significant difference:

archlinux updates are curated: they are tested before comimg into the pool. "controlled rolling" one might call it.

afaik, debian unstable does NOT do that - upstream updates just come straight in.
please correct me if i'm wrong.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 10:20 AM   #11
hazel
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2016
Location: Harrow, UK
Distribution: LFS, AntiX, Slackware
Posts: 3,711
Blog Entries: 10

Rep: Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056
There is only one safe way of updating an application beyond what your distro provides and that is to download the source code and build it locally. That will ensure that it links correctly to all the system versions of the libraries it needs. But then you are responsible for keeping it up to date forever after because your package manager won't know it's there.

Notice that I say an application. You can't do that kind of thing with a library because other packages might depend on that same library and not be compatible with the new version.

But what we are really dealing with here is an incompatibility between a user's mindset and the philosophy of a particular distro. That is precisely why there are so many different kinds of Linux. Debian Stable only changes every two years, so a lot of the software it contains is seriously out of date. It was designed for people like me who want reliability, not "bleeding edge" software that often breaks.

Your temperament is quite different. You want to have the latest stuff so Debian Unstable (Sid) or Arch or Fedora would probably be better for you. My advice to you would be to upgrade to Unstable for the time being, but not add any software from outside. You'll be getting more up-to-date versions of all your packages anyway. Some of them will be buggy, but at least they will all be guaranteed to be mutually compatible. And what you have learned already will still be applicable because it's still Debian. If you switch to Arch, you'll have to learn a new package manager and other tools. That may be where your future lies but Sid would still be a good stepping stone.

And by the way, the advice to have a separate home partition for your personal data is very good.
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 10:47 AM   #12
snowday
Senior Member
 
Registered: Feb 2009
Posts: 4,667

Rep: Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407Reputation: 1407
Quote:
Originally Posted by ondoho View Post
with one significant difference:

archlinux updates are curated: they are tested before comimg into the pool. "controlled rolling" one might call it.

afaik, debian unstable does NOT do that - upstream updates just come straight in.
please correct me if i'm wrong.
My observation is that Arch typically gets new packages sooner than Debian Unstable. For example (according to Distrowatch) Arch currently has 4.18 kernel, while Debian has 4.17; Arch has PHP 7.2.9 while Debian is still at 7.2, and so forth. From that perspective, there is an argument that Debian Unstable might be "more stable" than Arch.

(Note that the word "unstable" in this case refers to "frequency of change," not the layman's definition of "unreliable and buggy.")

You may be thinking of Debian Experimental, which is even less stable than Debian Unstable. That's where you'd find 4.18 kernel, for example. https://wiki.debian.org/DebianExperimental
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 11:08 AM   #13
hazel
Senior Member
 
Registered: Mar 2016
Location: Harrow, UK
Distribution: LFS, AntiX, Slackware
Posts: 3,711
Blog Entries: 10

Rep: Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056Reputation: 2056
The main difference between Unstable and Experimental is that in Experimental there is no guarantee that packages will even be compatible. You can break your system by using the Experimental repos and you won't get much sympathy if you complain.

With Unstable, you won't break your system but individual packages may crash or behave badly. You are expected to report any bugs you find and play your part in helping to fix them.
 
2 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 03:35 PM   #14
BW-userx
LQ Guru
 
Registered: Sep 2013
Location: Somewhere in my head.
Distribution: FreeBSD/Slackware-14.2+/ArcoLinux
Posts: 9,405

Rep: Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006Reputation: 2006
Void linux, and Manjaro (arch) Linux are two more distiros that are rolling releases, not that hard to maintain, OP could too look into how to create his own deb files from source code, then install as deb for a little easier maintenance.

Creating Debian/Ubuntu .deb packages
The Debian Administrator's Handbook
 
1 members found this post helpful.
Old 08-26-2018, 09:00 PM   #15
Ztcoracat
LQ Guru
 
Registered: Dec 2011
Distribution: Slackware, MX 18
Posts: 9,484
Blog Entries: 15

Rep: Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162Reputation: 1162
This is a great book to have-

https://debian-handbook.info/
 
1 members found this post helpful.
  


Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Software repository for Debian matrixebiz Linux - Newbie 6 08-20-2017 08:00 PM
Is Debian only as much stable as your old software? Smeagle Linux - Server 4 04-21-2012 02:13 PM
using testing software in stable debian distro drrnsk8ter4 Linux - Software 1 04-25-2004 06:14 AM

LinuxQuestions.org > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Newbie

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:01 PM.

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
Facebook: linuxquestions Google+: linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration