2009/1/16 Andreas Jaeger <aj(a)suse.de>de>:
What use cases
does Novell want to reach? What should the user be able
to do with SUSE?
- Portability/Laptop/Nettbooks and so on
- Connectivity of devices
- Support for syncronizing devices
- Home server setup, mediaserver, DNLA, UpnP, file , print and so on.
I think our problem is that we want to reach all of these at the same time. ;)
openSUSE is a desktop distribution with server functionality that can be used
by developers. In practice the primary focus is on desktop but we distribute
packages for the rest as well.
There is a mission statement, which is "create best Linux distro,
foster innovation, work together with upstream and make users happy"
from the project guidelines, working in an open manner.
openSUSE has different needs:
* we use it as basis for our enterprise server and desktop products
* we want to grow the openSUSE community
openSUSE is used by the community nowadays in all the different scenarios you
mention above - and you'll surely find one vocal user for each of them. ;)
Should we focus the distribution more? And what do to with the other use
Removing or just de-emphasising areas of traditional support, would
likely be very divisive. Folk get upset when only the "Other"
desktops or window managers are available.
Perhaps it's useful to think of 3 pillars of user base :
1 - distributing and stabilising, upstream software, developing
2 - stabilisation and development towards SLE (including ISV projects)
3 - growing Linux market, with a reliable, easy to manage full
At the moment, OBS is really aimed at addressing 1, though reading
Factory list archive suggests, difficulties on 1
The release engineering, distribution of openSUSE and
post-installation support and fixing, addresses 2 though I'm sure SLE
engineers would love having more problems solved, up front by
competent enthusiast contributions
But 3 is IMO let down at present, by releasing prematurely, and long
term benefit decisions with short term costs
If you spend some time, trying to field Installation questions, from
new users, it becomes obvious that error notifications deemed in
Bugzilla "cosmetic" erode confidence. Large numbers of known bugs in
heavily used systems, are then hit over and over. The Internal
developments are often let down by useability nits, sometimes just
labelling of buttons, or font sizes, which the open process ought to
benefit from early feedback, without expensive "focus group" testing.
There's a real conflict of requirement between the "Bleeding Edge" and
"It Just Works".
Are there ways, of having the cake and eating it? Perhaps using
stable fall backs, and having "Probationary" upgrades. Or do you
really need a watefall model of improvements, trickling down, and
finally having very widely tested good stuff frozen for SLE?
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