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View Full Version : Since When Does Cutting Edge Mean Unstable?



mamamia88
October 15th, 2012, 04:26 PM
If a developer deems an application worthy of release they must feel it is stable enough for day to day use. So why then do people insist that cutting edge is inherently unstable? If I decide that I'm never going to leave the house again sure I'll be safe but how much safer will i be then going out into the world and having a good time? I've been going out into the world for 24 years and yet I'm still alive. Sure stuff may happen once in awhile that may make me wish that i didn't go out but overall i'm still fine as a whole. Same things applies to computers as well. Sure firefox 16 may not be as stable as 15 but that isn't going to stop me from trying 16. If it crashes after all i can just revert to 15 with minimal effort. Sure for businesses using something like debian stable may be a good idea but, for individuals running a desktop os it doesn't make very much sense. Even then it would probably be a good idea to just hold packages back that have the possiblility of breaking something important aka xorg,wifi drivers,and video drivers and continusly upgrade end end user apps. Anyone else agree with this?

Grenage
October 15th, 2012, 04:29 PM
Cutting edge generally is unstable, but the latest 'stable' release is not cutting edge.

Most folks just want a stable system, and can't be bothered with upgrading apps for no tangible reason.

snowpine
October 15th, 2012, 04:58 PM
I'm not sure I understand your argument. Ubuntu is neither "cutting edge" nor "stable" in my experience/opinion. Have you tried Arch?

mamamia88
October 15th, 2012, 05:07 PM
I'm not sure I understand your argument. Ubuntu is neither "cutting edge" nor "stable" in my experience/opinion. Have you tried Arch?

running it now that's kinda of what inspired the question.

snowpine
October 15th, 2012, 05:10 PM
running it now that's kinda of what inspired the question.

Arch is very popular with the minority of users who prefer "cutting edge." I think we are in agreement.

Paqman
October 15th, 2012, 06:12 PM
If a developer deems an application worthy of release they must feel it is stable enough for day to day use.

Not necessarily the case. A lot of people will get their code out early to let the "many eyes" find the bugs quickly. The attitude to this varies greatly from project to project.

snowpine
October 15th, 2012, 06:22 PM
thefreedictionary.com gives one possible definition of "unstable" as "a. Tending strongly to change: unstable weather. b. Not constant; fluctuating: unstable vital signs."

When I say "a rolling release distribution is unstable by definition, because the software in its repositories is constantly fluctuating and guaranteed to change," I am NOT implying it is unreliable/poorly-engineered.

I think you (mammamia) are using "unstable" in a layman's sense of the word to mean "buggy, crashes a lot" which I understand is also a valid definition of the word.

forrestcupp
October 16th, 2012, 12:45 PM
A lot of times cutting edge is unstable, but not always. There will always be bug fixes throughout the life of any software, and the longer a software has been in existence, the more bugs will have been fixed.

Consider the difference between Windows Vista RTM and Vista SP1.

Warpnow
October 16th, 2012, 03:15 PM
On a small project, with relatively few or just one coder, code might be pushed into the cutting edge version with absolutely no testing or use. People can use it or not.

The longer people have used a given piece of code, the more its been tested, so the more stable it is.

KiwiNZ
October 16th, 2012, 07:48 PM
If 'stability' is high on your requirements then select your OS wisely. I would Steer clear of 6 monthly releases and use LTS type releases that are greater than 6 months in their life cycle. It may well be that quick release Distro,s like Ubuntu,s should be off your shopping list and you should go for OS's like Red hat Enterprise.