Bruce Perens: HP selects Debian as its "design center"
May 10, 2001, 16:17 (25 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Bruce Perens)
Desktop-as-a-Service Designed for Any Cloud ? Nutanix Frame
From: Bruce Perens <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: HP selects Debian as its "design center"
Date: 10 May 2001 00:12:41 -0700
HP has started talking publicly about this, so I'd better fill
HP has announced that Debian is their "design center". In other
words, Debian is the selected development platform for Linux work
at HP. The target of HP's development is all LSB-compliant
distributions, including Debian, Red Hat, Turbo, etc. But because
of its status as the development platform, Debian works out to be
"first among equals".
HP has already started vending Debian to customers, and will be
offering Debian support and training. This does _not_ mean that HP
will de-support other Linux distributions. HP certifies its
hardware with several distributions. In our software production
process, we will handle differences between Linux package formats
and the package dependency tree. As LSB continues to develop, we
hope to get out of certifying for individual distributions and
producing variant packages. Thus, supporting LSB is now a priority
HP folks are giving various reasons for this decision, which I
will attempt to reproduce below.
Why Debian for HP's development? It's the best way to get
software out to all of the distributions, because Debian's process
is so fair and so visible. As a non-profit, Debian is more of a
partner than a competitor with other distributions. HP's own
engineers can sign up as Debian developers and be granted the same
privileges as anyone else. New work is available for all of the
other Linux distributions to copy as soon as it's uploaded to
Debian's servers. Of course, we'll continue to host projects
through SourceForge, Collab.net, or our own portals. Working with
Debian adds capabilities to what the web portals provide.
HP appreciates that when HP wanted to make a Linux distribution
for the PA-RISC, Debian treated it as a free software collaboration
rather than a business relationship, and got the distribution done
in collaboration with our developers. That's the way GNU/Linux
development should happen.
Why Debian from a business standpoint? The Debian Free Software
Guidelines are one critical component there. For Debian, the
Official version _is_ the GNU version. Thus, HP and its customers
can redistribute Debian without hassles. Another important factor
is that Debian accepts new packages well, and thus we'll be able to
get Debian support for the things that are important to us.
Of course, HP already provides some services to help Debian out,
and has some Debian developers on salary. This will only
Hopefully, this announcement will make your day. It sure made
mine. I had to stay out of this decision, because I am obviously
prejudiced. HP management went ahead and did the right thing