On Mon, 2011-11-28 at 14:23 -0800, Joe Zeff wrote:
FWIW, unstable doesn't always mean "doesn't work very
well" or "tends
to crash." It can also mean "constantly getting updated" as compared
to "stays exactly the same for long periods."
There's a couple of commonly used definitions of "stable" used with *ix
releases, and you need to check which applies to the distro you're
* The version rarely changes, so you keep on using the same software
throughout the life of your installation. Your applications keep
working the same way, their configuration and application data is still
* The system stays reliably operating, and has very few errors.
Software is updated, but it's very rare that any unreliable updates are
The two conditions are not mutually dependent.
One big problem with the first one is; eventually you may be forced to
update your entire release, because of an application like Firefox
becomes too old for the internet (sites become unusable, because plugins
aren't available for your old version of the browser). Or a new
application that you'd like to use isn't available for your old release,
and you can't even compile it, thanks to major system changes in the
[tim@localhost ~]$ uname -r
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