Debian based distro with current software?

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Debian based distro with current software?

Postby osoitz » 2013-03-06 21:03

Hello,

During years I have installed Ubuntu in several friend&family computers because that saved me lots of unapayed support calls, but lately that decision is backfiring and this weekend I'll have to waste some hours of my spare time, again.

I seek your advice for Debian based alternatives. One obvious choice is Debian itself, but there are some details that I expect them to find annoying, like not having instantly the very latest version of Firefox and... well I can't think of any other right now. But installing from the experimental repository doesn't look like a support-saving solution to me, upgrades must be done manually, is that right?.

Have you been in this situation before? Is there any other Debian based distro that you consider specially suitable for a not-so-noob but also not-so-well-versed user that would give them easily the very latest stable version of commonly used programs?

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby sportscrazed2 » 2013-03-06 21:22

If all you care about is having the latest firefox why not just download the latest firefox straight from mozilla http://www.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/new/ then extract it somewhere on your harddrive? Then create a launcher to /pathoffirefoxfolder/firefox-bin To update you just click help>about firefox and it will update. That's exactly what I'm doing right now and it works great. I also have a few other programs that I use the latest version of on wheezy. All the dependencies are taken care of in the repos but you can just download binaries on the site. For example I use a program called minitube for youtube and gpodder for podcasts. Both provide tarballs with binaries included. To update minitube I just subscribe to the pages rss feed and when a new version comes out i just extract the new tarball over the old contents. It's not as convenient as having it all in one place but it's no where near as difficult. All other programs I could really care less if they are current
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby Randicus » 2013-03-06 21:43

You could look at Saline and Solus. I have no experience with them, but they are supposed to be "friendly" versions of Debian. Perhaps friendly enough for your dependents.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby dasein » 2013-03-06 22:59

At the risk of stating the obvious, this love affair with the Very Latest in SNS sounds suspiciously like you're asking not-too-subtly for a "rolling release"

If that's true, then install a "rolling release" distro and be content... that is, until you get the first in a flurry of phonecalls when some "automatic" update breaks the whole system.

OTOH, if you're just trolling, then why not head over to the Arch forums and see how far you get proposing that they switch to a fixed release cycle.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby pcalvert » 2013-03-06 23:10

You could use Debian stable along with this:
http://mozilla.debian.net/

Of course, if they won't be happy that Firefox is called "Iceweasel," then that may not work.

Phil
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That's why I was able to be a senator for 36 years." - U.S. Vice President Joe Biden
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby osoitz » 2013-03-07 01:30

@sportscrazed2
Are you using a 32bits Debian? I didn't manage to get upstream Firefox working in my 64bits Wheezy even after installing ia32-libs. I'm installing a 32bits Debian in a VM to try during the following days.

@Randicus
A quick look to the SolusOS livecd gave me a very good impression, it's very polished and the combination of Debian Stable with their own repositories for up to date versions of selected programs seems exactly what I need. It comes with loads of preinstalled software and that would be a downside if it was for me, but in this case the selection makes quite sense. That was a good hint.

SalineOS, on the other hand, doesn't seem to offer any advantage over regular Debian in this sense.

@pcalvert
Backports will get you Iceweasel 10 in Stable, and you can get version 19 via the experimental repository if you are using Testing, but then you have to explicitly upgrade it every time, or am I missing something?

@dasein
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby stevepusser » 2013-03-07 03:23

The Iceweasel maintainer maintains his own squeeze-backports repo: http://mozilla.debian.net/

And to toot my own horn, I maintain most of the packages in the Squeeze-based MEPIS 11 community repository. For Iceweasel 19, I took the sources, renamed them, and rebuilt them as Firefox, just to make things really confusing. We keep things pretty much up to date, except GIMP 2.8 requires too much upgrading of the GTK libraries for Squeeze.

http://main.mepis-deb.org/

We lost the restricted repositories, but since backporting all the upstream Debian codecs, including mjpegtools, are not really seeing much of a need for them.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby pcalvert » 2013-03-07 03:45

osoitz wrote:@pcalvert
Backports will get you Iceweasel 10 in Stable, and you can get version 19 via the experimental repository if you are using Testing, but then you have to explicitly upgrade it every time, or am I missing something?

I'm not sure where you got that idea from, but it's wrong-- the updates are handled automatically.

Phil
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That's why I was able to be a senator for 36 years." - U.S. Vice President Joe Biden
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby sportscrazed2 » 2013-03-07 04:06

osoitz wrote:@sportscrazed2
Are you using a 32bits Debian? I didn't manage to get upstream Firefox working in my 64bits Wheezy even after installing ia32-libs. I'm installing a 32bits Debian in a VM to try during the following days.

@Randicus
A quick look to the SolusOS livecd gave me a very good impression, it's very polished and the combination of Debian Stable with their own repositories for up to date versions of selected programs seems exactly what I need. It comes with loads of preinstalled software and that would be a downside if it was for me, but in this case the selection makes quite sense. That was a good hint.

SalineOS, on the other hand, doesn't seem to offer any advantage over regular Debian in this sense.

@pcalvert
Backports will get you Iceweasel 10 in Stable, and you can get version 19 via the experimental repository if you are using Testing, but then you have to explicitly upgrade it every time, or am I missing something?

@dasein
Look! another subliminal Arch ad: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJRxNhq0zVE

yep 32bit debian. Didn't even have to install any dependencies just removed iceweasel and firefox ran just fine right away.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby stevepusser » 2013-03-07 16:24

pcalvert wrote:
osoitz wrote:@pcalvert
Backports will get you Iceweasel 10 in Stable, and you can get version 19 via the experimental repository if you are using Testing, but then you have to explicitly upgrade it every time, or am I missing something?

I'm not sure where you got that idea from, but it's wrong-- the updates are handled automatically.

Phil


I know the squeeze-backports repo is set to not automatically upgrade over standard packages. I'm not sure about the mozilla.debian.net version, though. Upgrading iceweasel in Squeeze by adding the Debian Experimental repo is a very, very, bad idea.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby craigevil » 2013-03-07 16:48

you can get Iceweasel 19 or 17esr from mozilla.debian.net

Just pick the version you want

deb http://backports.debian.org/debian-backports squeeze-backports main
deb http://mozilla.debian.net/ squeeze-backports iceweasel-release

or
deb http://backports.debian.org/debian-backports squeeze-backports main
deb http://mozilla.debian.net/ squeeze-backports iceweasel-esr

If you are running Testing you can do:
deb http://your-mirror.debian.org/debian experimental main
for the current release or for the esr
deb http://mozilla.debian.net/ experimental iceweasel-esr

Lines in my sources.list
# Debian Mozilla team APT archive - http://mozilla.debian.net
# deb http://mozilla.debian.net/ experimental iceweasel-aurora
# deb http://mozilla.debian.net/ experimental iceweasel-beta
# deb http://mozilla.debian.net/ experimental iceweasel-esr

$ apt-cache policy iceweasel
iceweasel:
Installed: 19.0-1
Candidate: 19.0-1
Version table:
*** 19.0-1 0
1 http://ftp.us.debian.org/debian/ experimental/main i386 Packages
100 /var/lib/dpkg/status

NO need to run Testing or sid to get newer versions on Stable, that is what backports and the mozilla.debian.net repo are for.

This topic is brought up daily and would be easily solved with a search of the forum.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby osoitz » 2013-03-08 15:09

Great, I started a whole thread based on a misconception. Yes, it's actually quite easy to get the latest Iceweasel in Debian Stable (Testing is another matter). Anyway, I don't regret having made the mistake, this made me test SalineOS, Mepis and SolusOS.

I'm leaning towards using SolusOS this time, they have done a good job smoothing the edges and it will probably meet the general expectations an Ubuntu refugee might have better than the other solutions.

Thanks everyone for your help, I appreciate it.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby stevesr0 » 2013-04-12 23:18

(long-winded, by and for newbies. The point is to question if the mozilla repository has been temporarily "out" of versions greater than 10? or is there another reason for the difficulty I had in doing the update to version 20?)

I have two laptops running Squeeze.

I had previously updated iceweasel from 3.5.nn to version 19 following the instructions on mozilla.debian.net. I recall trying to use synaptic to update first, running into a dependency loop that synaptic couldn't handle. Apt-get handled it fine.

Today, I tried to use the same apt-get procedure on my other computer. The update worked but installed v.10 instead of v.19. I tried again with the same result.

After scratching my head and waiting several hours, I tried again, with synaptic. At this time, a new update was listed in synaptic to version 20. The synaptic update from 3.5.nn failed again with the same dependency loop.

Now, I tried again with apt-get and voila -- iceweasel was updated to version 20.

So, was my problem due to a temporary "roll-back" in the server holding the packages, or some other reason...?

I hope this note is somehow helpful to others having problems updating iceweasel.

Appreciate any comments about this or questions.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby stevepusser » 2013-04-13 02:20

It may have just been a blip, since version 20.0-1 has been in that repo since April 3rd. It may soon be updated to 20.0.1-1, unless the issues the new release fixes don't occur in Linux.
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Re: Debian based distro with current software?

Postby emariz » 2013-04-14 00:25

stevesr0 wrote:I had previously updated iceweasel from 3.5.nn to version 19 following the instructions on mozilla.debian.net. I recall trying to use synaptic to update first, running into a dependency loop that synaptic couldn't handle. Apt-get handled it fine.

viewtopic.php?p=437802#p437802


stevesr0 wrote:Today, I tried to use the same apt-get procedure on my other computer. The update worked but installed v.10 instead of v.19. I tried again with the same result.

Or you simply got confused and chose the "ESR" version (v. 10) instead of the "release" one (v. 20). Both are provided by the same repository, albeit in different release components.
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