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Chad Perrin wrote:
> On Tue, Sep 11, 2007 at 07:00:50AM +0900, Chad Perrin wrote:
>> On Tue, Sep 11, 2007 at 05:38:32AM +0900, Lionel Bouton wrote:
>>> Chad Perrin wrote the following on 10.09.2007 21:12 :
>>>
>>>> Additionally, FreeBSD provides more extensive software archives,
>>> I'm surprised to hear this, Gentoo software coverage is huge and truly
>>> amazing if you consider the unstable part of the Portage tree.
>> I have yet to see any system with as much software as in Debian's
>> software archives -- but FreeBSD comes surprisingly close.  Again, it has
>> been a while, but last I recall Gentoo didn't have more than 15k ports.
>> FreeBSD does.
> 
> I just checked.  Compared with Debian's more than 18k packages (not sure
> how many more -- I haven't checked lately) and FreeBSD's more than 17k
> ports, it looks like Gentoo provides just over 11k.  I think that puts
> Gentoo solidly in second place for Linux distributions, but well behind
> FreeBSD.
> 

Gentoo's "unstable" doesn't really exist in the same sense that Debian
has "stable", "testing" and "unstable". There's really three separate
classes of packages in Gentoo ... stable, architecture-keyworded (works
for the most part on some architectures but not truly stable on all of
them) and packages in what are called "overlays" -- repositories where
the really edgy stuff lives until it (sometimes) gets moved into the
main Portage tree.

I've run both amd64 and x86 systems successfully with a mix of keyworded
packages and packages from overlays, but I don't recommend it unless
you're a hard-core Gentoo freak like me (learn to love
/etc/portage/package.mask). I have three machines, though, so I can
survive if I have to take one down for 24 hours to clean it up from
scratch. :)

Yes, Debian has more packages. I went from Red Hat 9 to Debian ("woody")
when Red Hat spun off Fedora. The main reason I switched from Debian to
Gentoo about six months later was that Debian had this FSF religion
about "the Java trap", and a lot of the software I wanted to run was
written in Java. Gentoo had no such religion -- they had Java, most of
the Java packages I wanted and it all worked. The other nice thing about
Gentoo is that I've found it easier to integrate source packages that
aren't in the tree or one of the overlays that it is to integrate the
same package built from source into a Debian or Red Hat system.
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