Why should I ever bother filing another bug?
Here’s a person upset about how bugs are handled in Fedora.
Here’s a person upset about how bugs are handled in Ubuntu.
Things I’ve learned here:
- People have no idea (or care) where the problem comes from, they don’t care if it’s “upstream” or “distro”, they just want their software to work, and they don’t care who fixes it.
- We’re not the only project to face this challenge.
- This person thinks that we can bring pessulus/sabayon fixes to 7.04; a distro that is out of support, and even thought Scott Balneaves is now a contributing upstream; it doesn’t help this person who is stuck in some old version of Ubuntu, how do we help him?
- mpt and evan’s talks concentrate on fixing the feedback loop between distro and app developers. When it comes to application developers, make no mistake, this is the real fix. This doesn’t fix it for “plumbing” though (see below)
So how do we fix this for plumbing? Those of us who have been around kind of know how this works. “I have a broadcom card, and it worked with foo distro, and then I upgraded, and it broke, so I moved to bar distro, and it worked; amazing, therefore bar distro is the win and foo is crap.”
My experience in this area was at Ohio Linux Fest. I hadn’t gone to a LUG meeting in a long time and I got into the elevator and ran into a guy from the LUG, after initial hellos he was like “Wow, what the /fuck/ happened with Lucid, worst release ever, I can’t even connect!”
I was in a serious state of anxiety. Here I was, pouring my heart into this damn thing. And not just coworkers at Canonical, but our immense community contributors, pouring our heart and souls into this release, and to be slapped in the face with failure, ouch! What was he upset about? Some stupid work around he applied 2 years ago to get his stupid Broadcom wireless card working. And on an upgrade it broke.
As it ends up we’ve reached a new level of what people expect.
My “linux geek correct” answer would have been “Hey bro, you have a broadcom card, it’s a saving throw; each distro release has different set of variables”. If you’re lucky you roll a natural 20 on a certain release of a distro — and if you’re lucky an upgrade is totally easy. I don’t even know what to say to the people to who own these realtek cards. People are still recommending “ndiswrapper” for these cards. That’s basically “Hey, I can’t fix your problem, so here’s a work around”. That’s not sustainable.
And as we know the people with broadcom cards don’t even get to roll the dice, they’re still waiting! It would be nice to reset the board and say “You’ve been hosed for years, but this time we’ll get it right.”
What a mess!
So in conclusion
I don’t think there’s something we can fix here. If someone rolls the ndis20 and gets a working wireless, then … yay? We can perhaps do a better job of explaining to users that they got lucky.
I don’t know much about about how Fedora does bug reports (or Ubuntu for that matter), but I am pretty sure if you have a Broadcom card that it will be a horrible piece of pain for you regardless of what distro you use. (Until the newer drivers are integrated, and even then there’s no guarantee that those will work with both your older distro AND your older hardware.)
Hey, I’ve heard this before.
Of course you have, Dan Williams has been preaching this for years. And, as it ends up, every distro has bugs. Every day I hear people “I am switching from foo to bar, they fix bugs!” … but in reality, we’re all in the same level of doom, as it stands today if you have a broadcom wireless card, you will be doomed; roll the dice. Depending on your video needs, ATI or NVIDIA? Roll the dice. Doomed.
If your hardware works with no workarounds, send the manufacturer a note. If it doesn’t work, then don’t buy it! If you want to make a difference, vote with your dollar!
- UNIX is our generation’s fault; let’s not leave this burden with our children, let’s at least leave them a list of things they can fix.
- Let’s spend more time rewarding hardware manufacturers who do the right thing than dogpiling manufactures that might not know how to support Linux.
- Instead of flaming people who are frustrated that their computer doesn’t work maybe we should suck it up and deal with their bad attitude as long as it fixes the problem — it’s been proven over and over that people will do the right thing if they’re treated right.