Possibly the sweet spot for robustness and no-nonsense-ness, I wouldn’t trust my webserver to any other distro. Recently updated from Debian 11 to 12, not a wrinkle.
Happy birthday Debian, 100 of these days!
Fully agree on this. Debian is the distro you can trust it will do the job. It might not have the latest bells and whistles, but is widely supported, and most importantly, it doesn’t give problems.
Testing version of Debian is also quite stable relative to the stable version of many other distros (looking at you *Ubuntu) and is usually fairly up to date.
It is also a good idea to use Debian testing as a rolling-release distro. It works well, except for some minor annoyances:
I gather Debian Testing does not get the same level of security support as stable or even unstable. https://www.debian.org/security/faq#unstable
Yes, I thought the guidance was always to prefer unstable to testing, because once something bad gets into testing it takes a long time to get it out.
I’d heard the opposite more or less, basically that unstable is very unstable and you don’t want to use it unless you are fine with things breaking.
That said, for servers I generally stick to stable.
Unstable cannot really be very unstable, as many Debian developers are using it daily.
In a distant past, unstable could break every couple of months. This didn’t happen since a long time. Nowadays, you only have to deal with minor breakages (like a file moving from one package to another without the metadata about that being set correctly). On the other hand, testing got a bit worse as packages may disappear for a long time.
Still, I think testing it’s good enough for a desktop installation. (And, with proper care, you can mix testing and unstable to get the urgent updates faster.)
But for a server installation I would use Debian stable, of course.
Debian is also probably the only distro I’ve used where major version updates are actually painless and almost never break. It’s pretty impressive. Meanwhile Ubuntu is like “wipe and reinstall everything every 2 years”.
What I find most amazing about debian is how they keep the lights on for so long. There are so many open source projects that are struggling b/c the maintainers can’t do all the work for free. Many of these have donation links front and center on their landing pages. Not so debian.
Congratulations and here is to the next 30 years!
I didn’t start using it until mid 1995. Such a noob.
At least you remember! I started with Linux in ’98 but I know was distro hopping like mad in the first years, so I think I can only pinpoint the time to when I started using Debian between ’99 and 2003ish.
My first experience with Debian was around ‘98. I bought a £1 CD from a company that did Linux CDs by mail, along with a RedHat 5.1 one. I never successfully installed Debian (I tried several times and ended up with something that refused to boot every time) so I used RedHat. I didn’t try Debian again until about five years later. By this time, I could expect to reliable upgrade from one Debian release to the next without problems, whereas with RedHat even minor updates often hosed the system and required a complete reinstall.
I then moved to FreeBSD a couple of years later, where I get a stable ABI for 5 years (including for kernel modules) but still get the latest versions of things like toolchains and interpreters out of the box, so I can use modern C++ features on top of a stable base.
I bought a £1 CD from a company that did Linux CDs by mail
I bought a £1 CD from a company that did Linux CDs by mail
Linux Emporium, by any chance?
There were a bunch of them, also CheapBytes (what a warez name in hindsight), Linux Mall, and a lot of local folks who burned CD-Rs rather than getting them pressed.
I friend and I made a small business when we were 16 out of buying CheapBytes CDs for $1 a piece and then relabeling them and selling them for 25 and later 15 guilders. Most Dutch people didn’t have a credit card at the time and with the postage, it was only worth it when buying in larger quantities. Besides earning some extra, I was particularly happy about it because it gave me access to the latest releases (my friend was a Windows user, so didn’t care much).
I think one of my last purchases (besides Libranet) was a dual-layer, double sided Debian DVD that contained all of the archive for a single platform if I remember correctly.
That sounds very familiar, I think so.
I was going to ask the same question. :-)
I remember installing one of the earlier Debian versions was a real chore. I think this was before 1998 (probably Debian 1.0 or 1.2 one of the InfoMagic Linux sets). At some point it would run through a one or more questions for seemingly almost every package. Not sure if it was dpkg-reconfigure in full interactive mode. And I really had no clue what to answer in most cases.
It was really contrived compared to installing Slackware. But then they fixed that up and installation got much smoother and then they had an edge for a while in package management with APT.
I’m not a Debian user, but it’s great to see the project thrive for so long.
I think I was using Debian by 2000 so. I first started with SLS, then Slackware. I had also tried out some other oddballs, and then mostly RedHat until around 2000. I don’t remember why I had switched from RH though, maybe it was their emphasis on RHEL? I had actually created a couple RPMs from scratch, but I’ve never really spent the time to do with with DEBs.
30 years since they updated a package? Hey-o
Although I submitted this, I don’t actually use Debian myself but admire from a distance its stability, its careful evolution and relatively long support timelines.
Why does it feel so much longer than that? :v
The safe, eventual haven for distro hoppers
Slightly unrelated, but I’m managing own mailserver for more than 2 decades and I’ve never seen this header from the linked email:
That’s because it’s an archived Usenet post, not an email.
My bad, there’s indeed a Nntp-Posting-Host header.
That’s OK, it took me a second to figure it out after looking at the headers after you posted.