[systemd-devel] I wonder… why systemd provokes this amount of polarity and resistance

Lennart Poettering lennart at poettering.net
Mon Oct 27 16:13:46 PDT 2014

On Mon, 27.10.14 18:25, Dale R. Worley (worley at alum.mit.edu) wrote:

> > From: "Lennart Poettering" <lennart at poettering.net>
> > 
> > Please, let's discuss this elsewhere. Let's keep a strict technical
> > focus on this ML!
> I believe that you mean that outsiders are welcome here to provide
> assistance to systemd as it has already been implemented.  One
> difficulty is that outsiders are usually not able to provide such
> assistance.
> It would be useful if there was a mailing list where outsiders could
> come with problems -- "systemd does not implement what I need as it is
> provided by the distro".  I would expect such a mailing list to be
> named "systemd-users".  But no such list seems to exist.  (And thus,
> they show up in systemd-devel.)

Well, systemd is a suite of components that people build OSes from. As
such it isn't really an app you install on top of your OS, it's more a
toolset for distro and device builders. Now, if end users have
questions about details how they can uses these devices and distros,
then I figure they should always contact the manufacturers of these
devices, and the distro developers first.

Or in other words: we are not the final product that people should
interface with, we just provide a set of components where other people
can build final products out, and by doing so they also need to take
the responsibility for providing a first level of help for it.

Now, of course, the more technical things get, sometimes its better to
ask upstream, and we currently do not have a separate ML for questions
like that, we use systemd-devel for that, which of course is primarily
used for development. But I think it's still OK that way, as the
amount of technical user question we get is still managable, and by
not making the distinction between the group of developers and the
group of users too strict I guess our community can only win.

systemd-devel is the place for *technical* discussions only though. If
you have a technical point to make, a technical question to ask, a
patch to send, a technical suggestion to make, a technical feature
request to post, it's the right place.

However, it's not the place for UNIX philosophy discussions, about
discussions what we should be and what we shouldn't be. Now we could
open a new ML for that philosphical kind of stuff, but I have serious
doubts that many of us developers would subscribe there, hence I think
it would be better to do those discussions elsewhere, maybe on blogs,
g+ posts, on twitter, on lwn, on reddit... The discussions are being
had there anyway, and that's OK that way. Some of the systemd
developers scan and post on these forums anyway[1], regularly, hence I
really don't see the need for a new ML.


[1] I scan and sometimes post on LWN. I think Tom does the same on g+
    and lwn. Daniel on twitter, and so on...

Lennart Poettering, Red Hat

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