Matthew Dillon dillon at
Sun Aug 3 10:22:27 PDT 2003

:El Sat, 02 Aug 2003 21:44:55 -0400 kbk at xxxxxxxxx (Kurt B. Kaiser) escribió:
:> edition, then you get five years :).  They are ending all support for
:> everything before RH9 by the end of this year, and RH9 ends 30Apr04!
:> They claim that certain "popular" releases may be supported for a
:> longer period but AFAIK none have been identified as yet.
:A good thing of free software is that nothing stops you to continue
:supporting a unmaintained RH (or whatever) release. (You can even get
:money with that!)
:I suppose that's what Matt means.
:Diego Calleja

    Yes, that is precisely what I mean.  Nobody is saying that a company
    should support a product forever.  That is obviously not possible,
    but it doesn't change the fact that there will always be a minority
    of users of a product who for one reason or another need to stick
    with it for a very long time, and it is important for those users to
    have a means of continued support even if they wind up doing it amoungst
    themselves.  This is a very practical application of the open source
    nature of Linux, *BSD, Apache, and so forth which you simply cannot get
    with a proprietary product.

    Also, the nature of open source imparts some sanity into the release
    and upgrade process.  Companies like Microsoft force people to 'upgrade'
    products which they are perfectly well satisfied with, simply to get a 
    few minor bug fixes.  With open-source you aren't forced to do anything
    and bug fixes are usually made to old/obsolete releases in parallel with
    new releases for considerably longer then a commercial company would
    offer bug fixes (before forcing the customer to upgrade).  Hence we
    see parallel work on older versions of FreeBSD, such as security fixes,
    parallel work on Apache 1.x and Apache 2.x, parallel work on bind
    8.x and 9.x, and so forth.

					Matthew Dillon 
					<dillon at xxxxxxxxxxxxx>

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