Quality of FreeBSD
marcolz at stack.nl
Thu Jul 21 11:37:50 GMT 2005
First, thank you for your clear reply.
> 90% of useful FreeBSD testing happens when large FreeBSD consumers take
> release of FreeBSD and deploy them in their testbeds and real-world
> environments, and find the bugs through the application of high levels of
> load and obscure hardware configurations. This is why later FreeBSD
> releases along a -STABLE branch are typically much more stable than
> earlier ones -- the code has run on millions of machines for untold
> amounts of load, instead of the thousand or so with a very selected load
> it's likely to run on during development. This is how all software
> vendors work, really -- be it Microsoft, or Apple, old-style UNIX vendors,
> or any of the Linux vendors. Some set of users sits on the bleeding edge
> and shakes out the early problems, and then the rest of the user base
> suffers through the later versions to shake out more subtle problems that
> gradually get resolved.
Indeed. That's why my company started taking FreeBSD 5.3 in use for
production servers when it was out. Since then numerous bugs were fixed,
some of which reported by us. Now that we're X bug fixes later in time
and started to get a good feeling about the number of open problems, it
is extremely annoying to hear the "This will (probably) not be fixed in
5.x" statements. That conflicts with 'gradually get resolved'. What do
you recommend larger consumers to do ? Keep using FreeBSD 4 and start
testing FreeBSD 6.x, dropping 5.x all together ?
I know FreeBSD 5 was a strange exception in the relase scheduling and
that a lot has been learned from it for the future and I'm certainly not
unthankful for all the work that's done, but I'd like a clear answer on
what to do now in regard to taking FreeBSD 5 into 'real' production...
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