FreeBSD's problems as seen by the community

Timo Schoeler timo.schoeler at
Sat Jan 12 05:51:42 PST 2008

Thus Dag-Erling Smørgrav <des at> spake on Sat, 12 Jan 2008
14:44:06 +0100:

> Oliver Fromme <olli at> writes:
> > Certainly, but as I wrote, it's not a big deal.  I have
> > several other patches that I maintain on my own for
> > various reasons.  For example I have a local patch set
> > that enables "-c none" in ssh, so I can scp large files
> > much faster between slow machines over channels that don't
> > need encryption, and still be able to use ssh's features.
> > I don't even try to submit the patch to the OpenSSH people,
> > because they would reject it.
> Correct.
> > I considered submitting it as a local patch to the FreeBSD base,
> > but I think it would be rejected too, reason: "please submit it
> > upstream to the OpenSSH people".  :-)
> Incorrect.  I have done this myself in the past, and IIRC it's almost
> trivial.  I don't recall why I didn't commit it.
> > In the particular case that I mentioned, the maintainer
> > of syscons was in the process of completely restructuring
> > the code anyway, so any other patches had to wait.
> Except he didn't really completely restructure it, he just broke it
> in a different way than it was already broken.  I was very
> disappointed, but I didn't feel that I had sufficient seniority to
> contradict him, nor sufficient experience to fix it properly.
> > > > (I don't even think is the largest German BSD
> > > > community, but that's a different story).
> > > Even in case it's the second biggest forum, it shouldn't be
> > > ignored;
> > I agree completely, it shouldn't be ignored.  (Whether it's
> > the first, second or third biggest forum doesn't matter at
> > all; it can't be easily measured anyway.)
> is a native-language forum, and I suspect it suffers from
> the same problems as other native-language fora: they become closed
> communities with little or no contact with the parent community, and
> over time they construct their own mythology of how that community
> functions and acts.

Sorry, but (especially in this case) that is nonsense as it's primarily
an excuse and disparages the work done there.

> I have seen this before - a complete disconnect between the reality of
> the project and its perception by a native-language user group,
> culminating in one case in a face to face "crisis meeting" between
> members of that community and FreeBSD developers, and in another in a
> flame war over an "open letter" from that user group to the
> developers. Interestingly, both cases involved German-language
> communities.
> I also dimly recall a similar situation with the Japanese FreeBSD
> community, which resulted in Warner learning Japanese in an effort to
> bridge the divide.  I was very amused when he started copying some of
> the idiosyncracies of the Japanese community :)
> -- 
> Dag-Erling Smørgrav - des at

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