FAQ about KDE 4.2 in Debian

I got a bunch of emails in the last weeks with one or more of the following questions. Here it is for general knowledge :)

Will be KDE 4.2 beta 1 uploaded to experimental? Or to another public repository?
No.

And KDE 4.2 beta 2?
Maybe. But notice if it is uploaded it will be replacing current KDE 4.1 in experimental, so we will upload it only if we are sure it is stable and mature enough to replace 4.1

Will be KDE 4.2 backports in http://kde4.debian.net ?
No, backports were planned only for the KDE 4.1 series.

If experimental starts shipping KDE 4.2 (beta or RC), will be updates in http://kde4.debian.net for 4.1.4 (and if released 4.1.5)?
Yes, there will be backports for all the releases of 4.1.x.

When will be KDE 4 uploaded to unstable? And to testing?
KDE 4 will replace KDE 3 in unstable when Lenny is released. After some time, it will migrate from unstable to testing.

Bonus question: When will be Lenny released?
When it is ready.

31 thoughts on “FAQ about KDE 4.2 in Debian

  1. Matthieu Gallien

    Hello,
    I am not happy with this decision, but still, I will never forget all the efforts you are doing.
    Thanks for packaging kde in debian and even providing a stable kde4 in experimental. I am an happy Debian user.
    Thank you

  2. Andy Parkins

    So, experimental is stable now?

    Seems strange to me.

    Personally, I use experimental to try out the latest and greatest. When I do, I fully expect everything to come falling down around my ears.

  3. Bocskai Csaba

    I am happy that the Debian team isn’t rushing just to satisfy inpatient users. It is a wise thing.
    Thank you!

  4. Dom

    I love the bonus question. Not so much the answer ;)

    Am I right in my assumption that it’s the worst time that OpenOffice and KDE are releasing new versions – would these new versions be in unstable now if it weren’t for Lenny release (and freeze)?

  5. Andy Parkins

    (Preface: obviously this is none of my business, I’m not the one doing the work. I accept that. The below is just an opinion.)

    I don’t think this is about “rushing”; this is (IMHO), a mischaracterisation of what experimental is for. experimental _should_ be rushed; the idea of not rushing changes into experimental for stability reasons is just daft. Get changes in there, find the faults and let them move into unstable when its appropriate.

    Experimental should be about flushing bugs out as soon as possible, if KDE upstream have released it, it should be in experimental. Otherwise time that could be used for finding bugs is just being wasted – KDE 4.2 is going to make it into debian in the end, so why not get a head start on the feedback?

    If it were me I would be pushing anything that builds from upstream into experimental. If experimental isn’t being used like this then what’s the point of it?

  6. Karellen

    While I am a little disappointed that 4.2 isn’t going into experimental immediately, this is more than offset by the gratitude I feel for all the awesome work that’s gone into getting 4.1.x in.

    Thanks for this update, and I look forward to seeing 4.2 when you feel it’s ready.

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  8. Antonín Mička

    :-D
    “When it is ready”
    Yeah, it’s Debian, it’s terrible, it’s nice… Simple, It is Debian.
    :-D

  9. cupo

    I think this is a bad choice. I’m installing from experimental ’cause i want to see latest news, not to have stability.
    I love Debian, and thanks all the developers, but this time, you’ve done a really bad choice.
    Have to use kubuntu to see kde4.2????
    How could you have new users if neither in experimental they could use latest software???
    With love, a sincerly Debian user

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  11. fastidio

    Why???
    Don’t want stability!
    Want to try, to test, to see, and to discuss about.
    It’s not in stable, it’s in experimental.
    Let us try KDE4.2

  12. josh

    I just want to know at what moment
    experiemental became stable
    should let the user choose if want kde 4.2 or 4.1 by the way still lenny repo for kde 4.1 for stable users right??

  13. rufusD

    experimental != unstable
    Even your official documentation mentions at some place, that experimental is not to be used except for bug-hunting. Stable features some KDE, lenny features 3.5.9-and-a-half, so people opting for stability know where to find it.
    Likewise do people opting fur cutting-edge software turn to experimental.

  14. Mike S

    Thanks for all your work on KDE 4 in Debian so far, but I have to say that I’m both surprised and disappointed with this decision, especially with the reason being stability of packages that are in the experimental repository(!).

  15. ana Post author

    @all:

    I am afraid the name of experimental is misleading nowadays.
    Currently experimental is used to host KDE 4.1 no because KDE 4.1 is experimental, just because unstable/testing is “busy” with 3.5.x that is the version targeted to Lenny. This was the only way to provide both versions to users.
    If tomorrow Lenny were released, we could upload 4.1 to unstable and use experimental for 4.2, but I am afraid that won’t be the case.

  16. MoDaX

    To Bob: nobody said there wouldn’t be KDE 4.2 in unstable. When Lenny is released, KDE3 desktop will be gone from unstable forever. Yes, ONLY pending Lenny release is holding back KDE4 from unstable, nothing else.

    To rufusD: experimental is just another Debian repository which is supposed to contain newer packages than ones in unstable. That’s still true at the moment. As for bug-hunting, it may sound harsh, but sometimes it is not really fun to “release” beta software which users treat as stable and report obvious upstream bugs to Debian BTS just to annoy maintainers instead of reporting bugs upstream and helping *them* to improve KDE. What is more, some people do not understand that software at beta stages is not supposed to be complete and have too high expectations. On top of that, frequent and sometimes incompatible upstream changes makes it hard to maintain KDE libraries in the official distribution. Now add that KDE 4.1 has nowhere to go but to stay in experimental at the moment (which means, there is no way to downgrade, have that in mind!). So those are exactly the reasons why releasing something crappy and completely untested is not an option even for experimental. Debian users are not supposed to install crappy packages (in terms of quality of the packages themselves, not upstream code) in their systems just to meet the hype. That, however, does not mean there won’t be KDE 4.2 (pre)releases for Debian. They will be available when we feel that packages are ready for you, dear users.

  17. Rick

    I guess i just don’t understand on a policy level what’s keeping KDE 4.1 out of unstable. Logically (to me at least) it would make sense for testing to have 3.5, unstable to have 4.1, and experimental to have 4.2 Beta.

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  19. fastidio

    Please, remember that tomorrow will be released the beta2 of kde4.2.
    Please, remember that there’s lot of people waiting since the beta 1 to test this.
    Please, remember that, sometimes, developers work for testers and users.

  20. Draconiak

    i know the debian ways ;), but kde 4.0 dont touch experimental and…
    why just overwrite kde 4.1 to kde 4.2 in experimental?
    then the cycle will be fixed, skipping kde 4.1 and accelerating 4.2.

    anyways tanks for the great kde 4.1 backports.

  21. belze

    I’ve not tried these packages yet, but I feel to say thank to everyone involved in this experiment. I’m sure that when Lenny is out we will see KDE4 in unstable. I don’t see any reason to shout against packagers and developers for beta’s missing: even if unofficially they’re here, and eveyone can test, fix, enjoy, cry, etc… in this way if I won’t like these beta packages I can remove ‘em and came back to experimental ones!!!

    Grazie mille per il tempo dedicato, siete fantastici e Debian vive grazie a persone come voi! Continuate così!

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