Kurt B. Kaiser kbk at
Sun Aug 3 09:50:29 PDT 2003

Diego Calleja García <diegocg at xxxxxxxxxxx> writes:

> A good thing of free software is that nothing stops you to continue
> supporting a unmaintained RH (or whatever) release. 

True in theory, but unless it's a tiny server or a box not on the net,
it's impractical to keep up with the upstream security patches once RH
stops the errata RPMs (assuming we are talking about a small number of

Basically, you would have to take on all the work that RH did to track
and analyze the changes in the original source, possibly fix up the
patch and .spec files, and then rebuild and install the binary RPMs
for each of the packages you are running.

> (You can even get money with that!)

That's a good point!  

There is no way to maintain NT after MS drops it, but with sufficient
motivation any OS SW can be maintained forever.

But the best way IMHO is to stay in synch with the OS implementation
through a great package maintenance system.  Ideally just a cron that
runs every night, which can handle even "major" releases without
user interaction.  That way you don't ever have to take over the
work of the distro packagers.

If the user wants to build from source outside the package system,
fine, there is /usr/local/ and /home/ and the associated bin
directories.  Anything done there is unsupported (and unrestricted).

The user should not make changes outside of the packaging system to
those areas of the file system under package management.  That way a
consistent system can be maintained long-term.


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