Ooh, looks like there's a nice talk on Guix at DebConf this year

Debian and Guix are both great and share many goals and I'd love to see both communities work together more <3

@cwebber I tried GuixSD but ran out of patience while trying to get things just so, so I'm thinking the #debuix approach may be better for me. Did that work okay for you?

@jboy It worked out quite well for me. It should work out even better with the new "guix pull" :)

As we're discussing on freenode's channel right now, it would be even better for Debian users if we got a Guix package package available so Debian folks could just apt-get install guix

@cwebber oh hey, I'm lurking there... will take a look.

@notclacke @jboy It's a *heck* of a lot faster (though still takes like a minute to run), though I don't know the details... I think something's precompiled but I don't remember what :)

More info here... ish :)

@notclacke @jboy As you know, a minute or two to run is much faster than guix pull *used* to be ;)

@cwebber @notclacke guix pull was a pretty reliable way to turn my thinkpad into an extra space heater

@cwebber @notclacke @jboy
GuixSD uses Shepherd rather than systemd, doesn't it?

Does that mean all the Gnome apps are unavailable?

@fitheach (but I've never used Gnome, so I don't know for sure)

KDE user?
Not a Gnome (Desktop) user myself but I do use some of the apps.

Tiling window managers aren't my thing, I prefer virtual desktops. Although, I suppose you could use both.

I've been a happy Xfce user, for years.

@jboy @cwebber @fitheach guix uses elogind, which is a fork of systemd with the init parts removed and only the logind parts (which is what gnome really depends on) remaining.

@notclacke @jboy @cwebber

Ah, OK. Thanks. The Wikipedia article states Shepherd was "inspired" by systemd which had given me a different impression.

@fitheach @notclacke @jboy Shepherd is wayyyy older than systemd I think? It was originally called "GNU DMD" (Daemon for Managing Daemons). Anyway systemd is not an inspiration.

@cwebber @jboy nice! what laptop do you use which presumably doesn't require any non-free firmware?

@cwebber @aminb I installed on a Thinkpad x230, then twice ordered the wrong wifi dongle. Part of the reason I ran out of patience...

@jboy @cwebber ha. my main machine is currently an xps 15 9560, so the built-in wifi is definitely going to be an issue. which dongle is "the right one"? do you have a list of the ones with free firmware?

though i also have an x220t, i wonder if the wifi on that would work under GuixSD

@aminb @cwebber h-node is a place to look:

Make sure to filter on {"works": "yes"}, or you'll wind up in my situation...

@jboy @aminb Getting sick of sorting through that stuff is one reason I moved to a LibreM :)

@cwebber yes - they should start sharing the same package manager! Will #debian *ever* be able to ditch that part of its distro?!?!

@mray @cwebber A distro is the package manager, the package tree and a small init, so the answer is simply no. Unless somebody decrees that the projects have now merged and Guix will be named Debian.

@notclacke @cwebber in the face of Debian clearly being more than *only* a package manager and tree (it's a community, too!) – I think that remains an interesting question: Wouldn't it be a true drawback if debian was doomed to use the same package manager for all eternity? No other piece of the entire OS seems to be so fatally ingrown.

@mray @cwebber The software (the package manager, package tree and init routines) like any software isn't just the ones and zeroes of the code but also the people who write the code, and code evolves through the mechanism of having that community of people who modify it.

But dpkg and rpm are so much more similar than dpkg and guix, and neither Fedora nor Debian has switched to the package manager of the other in the over two decades that Debian and Fedora/RHL have existed, even though there would probably be synergistic advantages in doing so.

I wouldn't call them fatally ingrown. apt and yum/dnf have both learned from each other and gained features over the years, and the package trees and inits of both have evolved together with the features, to provide e.g. 32+64-bit support. The package managers are grown conservatively, and rightly so, because every little change affects all the things that millions of people want to do with that OS.

Look at the controversy surrounding changing from one init to another and tell me that changing the whole filesystem layout *and* service model *and* packaging system would be survivable.

@notclacke @cwebber I hear you. In the light of your perspective: How many improvements to a dpkg alternative does it take to steer towards the unsurvivable route? Seems like at one point a community will involuntarily deprive itself from progress because it can't bear technical change in one key part. Does it really have to be that way?

@mray @cwebber I'm wildly guessing that taking Debian from dpkg to something guix-like would take one or two decades of conservative, incremental change with a strong guiding vision and determined leadership or it would shatter the community, and the critical moment where they would switch from FHS to a hashed store would be highly controversial and risky.

Debian is not only a distribution, but also a meta-distribution, and that's another level of pressure.

But maybe I'm overestimating the difficulty. Having something guix-like, or guix, grow in parallel to and coexist with dpkg might be something the community accepts. Maybe snap and flatpak are the vectors through which distros will move in this direction?
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