Debian Unofficial Apt Repositories

From rick Mon Dec 2 17:06:40 2002
Date: Mon, 2 Dec 2002 17:06:40 -0800
To: SlugLUG (
Subject: Re: [SlugLUG] Debian to Gentoo?

Quoting Ignacio Solis (

> I have been meaning to try gentoo out myself. However, I don't want to
> clear my system right now, it's so purrty. I have a box that was going
> to get gentoo, but lacks a video card. I think my laptop will be the
> victim.
> Phil, Rick? Any insightful reviews?

Gentoo's nice, and should be tried. It's a matter of taste.

> What I've found problematic in debian, is that the cutting edge is not
> always the cutting edge, even unstable.

Sometimes you need to resort to unofficial apt repositories, to get cutting-edge stuff that no official package-maintainer has bothered to submit to -unstable. I try to add ones I hear about that seem of interest to , but it's hardly comprehensive. Other places include

Unofficial repositories do tend to come and go, in part because they're seldom needed for long, nor much needed.

> So we can't have kde3 'cause the gccs aren't stable?

There are several unofficial repositories for KDE3 packages. I pulled some stuff down from them, at one time, but wasn't really very keenly interested, so didn't get much of what they have. You can probably get more-current information on Debian Planet, though, as with Web forums generally, take information from there cum granum salis, as they follow Gene Spafford's dictum about Usenet. ("Usenet is like a herd of performing elephants with diarrhea - massive, difficult to redirect, awe-inspiring, entertaining, and a source of mind-boggling amounts of excrement when you least expect it.")

Cheers, kill -9 them all.
Rick Moen Let init sort it out.

Date: Wed, 17 Dec 2003 04:59:41 -0800
From: Rick Moen <>
Subject: Re: [evals] Re: Red Hat and VA Linux - Compare and Contrast

Quoting Michael Jennings (

> is the primary source of our Debian system issues. So
> if that's the "official solution," it's not a solution at all in my
> book.

It's not an official anything, to the best of my understanding, but rather an unofficial repository run by Norbert Tretkowski. I've never used it (because I don't use Debian-stable), but I notice that the instructions on the front page say "We recommend you to pick out single backports which fits your needs, and not to use all backports available here." How much do I win, if I wager you do otherwise? ;->

I personally tell people, "Stick with stable until you feel comfortable with fixing minor apt/dpkg problems. Switch to testing after that, but beware of the security-update gap. Switch to unstable if you're OK with fixing very rare but possibly severe apt-triggered breakage — such as broken glibc — and expect you'll check the /topic on #debian for such calamities before upgrading".

"Use backports sparingly on stable if you absolutely cannot live without some goodies and are willing to retreat if it doesn't work out."

"Use packages from experimental if you were an idiot and bought an i845 video chipset without bothering to check driver support, and therefore need XFree86 4.3."

Cheers,        "A raccoon tangled with a 23,000 volt line, today.  The results
Rick Moen       blacked out 1400 homes and, of course, one raccoon."                                  -- Steel City News