Elizabeth Krumbach on 3 Jan 2009 06:29:44 -0800

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Re: [PLUG] New Broadcom STA Linux Driver

On Sat, Jan 3, 2009 at 8:30 AM, Art Alexion <art.alexion@gmail.com> wrote:
>  In contrast, I have read complaints on the
>  Dell Linux list that the Mini 9 repo isn't getting updated regularly.

Yeah, and there is a bug about it:


With Pat McGowan of Canonical saying on 12/8: "A set of updates will
be made available very soon. Sorry for the delay."

Alas, Hardy on my new mini9 still isn't being updated, which is
probably the most disappointing thing about it, but there were a
couple of others[0]. If they aren't committed to maintaining security
upgrades this early in the release cycle, I don't have high hopes for
them supporting it in the long term, and that's really a shame.
Luckily I've heard reports that everything works without too much
trouble in vanilla Intrepid, so once I gather up the courage (and
time!) to wipe my factory install I'll be giving that a spin and
hoping everything really does still work.

>  My question, in reading that, is, why take on that extra work and
> layer of complexity and then not keep up with it?

When the fellow from Dell came to PLUG last year he explained that it
took so long to offer the latest Ubuntu versions (over a month)
because of the extensive testing and additional development that had
to go into each model to make sure everything worked. They want their
customers to get a solid Linux experience from Dell, to reflect well
upon themselves for offering it. There is no proof, but based on
evidence I suspect their use of their own repositories was a business
decision made to have full control over the systems so they could
control the user experience. I don't know that it was the wisest
decision, since it would certainly be better if we had the security
updates they're promising but thus far failing to delivery, but even
the Asus eeepc default install is Xandros heavily customized by Asus
(I don't know much about their security history though, I didn't even
realize Xandros still existed!). The Ubuntu eeepc project is not an
Asus initiative, it's a community project, so it's not really fair to
compare the mini9 and eeepc in that regard since you're not comparing
stock install to stock install. The mini9 has a lot of community
documentation[1], but since I hear the hardware is pretty easy to get
working (even if the broadcom wireless chipset is proprietary, it
works fine with wl, or ndiswrapper) it doesn't require a project
around it.

[0] http://princessleia.com/journal/?p=1405
[1] https://help.ubuntu.com/community/DellMini9

Elizabeth Krumbach // Lyz // pleia2
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