Subject: Re: UUCP removal from OpenBSD
To: None <>
From: Joseph Sarkes <>
List: current-users
Date: 10/01/2001 08:17:50
> On Sun, Sep 30, 2001 at 01:06:27PM -0400, Bill Sommerfeld wrote:
> > i still use uucp.
> > 
> > i've been saying for years (since pkgsrc was created) that it should
> > be exiled to pkgsrc.

Perhaps another option would be to segregate out the "optional"
stuff into another set optional.tar.gz which would still give
a fully functional unix system out of the netbsd tree, yet
allow the minimalists to have their smaller systems. It seems
to me that the stuff included in the netbsd distribution is the
historically full unix system described in the books of years
ago, and is fully operational as is. If you drop out bits and
pieces, you will have an incomplete system that you can't even
get the new packages into on certain hardware, due to the 
unavailability of connectivity software included in the system.

One of the major strengths of NetBSD is its completeness. If you
drop out a piece here and a piece there, sooner or later you have
just another linux. Older hardware may only have uucp connectivity
via serial ports, (no I don't have any examples right now, other
than my hp300 with broken ethernet interface). Just don't minimalize
NetBSD into a system that doesn't have full functionality. If the 
kernel or include headers are updated right now, the whole tree
is fixed to work afterwards. If uucp, (or perhaps /bin/sh next?) is
separated out too far, the synchronization will drop between the
pieces, and since it is only "pkgsrc" it won't be the responsibility
of a NetBSD developer to fix the problem. 

There are times I use linux, but NetBSD works out of the box as an
integral chunk. One can never tell what will happen with linux.
What utilities or versions do you need with which kernel of linux?

Will we need slackware and redhat versions of integrated NetBSD for
useable systems? Up to this point the NetBSD developers have done
a tremendous job of this function on their own. What will happen
when vital pieces of NetBSD are the sole responsibility of another
developer? How long has it been since wine would build under NetBSD
for example. If gcc is separated out as a package, and then won't
sync with the tree, the whole of NetBSD is at risk of stopping
untill some NetBSD developer takes it up again.

I apologize for the long winded speachification here, and I admit
that I am not a contributor in the development effort other than 
trying to test out things. The final decision rests with the
principals that do the major work. It is just one of the factors
of our times that everything is dropped except for the one thing
you WANT to do, and the fringes get more and more ragged. My personal
fear is that something will happen at some small factory (the owner
dies of old age or something) and some vital single sourced
part is no longer available, and the whole electronics industry
crashes. (remember the epoxy factory fire in japan a decade ago?)
If there is a war or major bit of terrorism, what will that do to
our communications infrastructure? UUCP is a distributed network
that only requires connectivity with your neighbor. A bunch of 
broken fibres or earthquake damage won't kill the whole thing.
How can tcp/ip work if the root nameservers aren't reachable?

Anyways, my two cents is don't drop the redundant stuff out
without ensureing it is maintained and available for use.

Joseph Sarkes