Sunday, May 16, 2010
But I don't buy to the view that Debian Stable is outdated. If you are running a server this much older packages and slow updates are a blessing. Moreover, you can catchup to the latest and greatest packages even on desktop. All you need is to add debian-backports to your /etc/apt/sources.list. A mix of Debian stable and Debian Backports will bring you all the popular packages. Here is the content of my sources.list
manmath@debian:~$ cat /etc/apt/sources.list
deb ftp://ftp.debian.org/debian/ lenny main contrib non-free
deb http://security.debian.org/ lenny/updates main contrib
deb http://www.debian-multimedia.org/ lenny main non-free
deb http://www.backports.org/debian lenny-backports main contrib non-free
With the above repo list I am able to run Debian stable and work on OpenOffice 3.2, Iceweasel 3.5, Pidgin 2.6.6, Kernel 2.6.32 and many other packages. Besides, Debian stable is supported by Google Chrome, Skype and a majority of other linux software vendors such as Softmaker and Codeweavers. The only caution you should take is to pick out single backports which fits your needs, and not to use all the packages from backports repo.
For example, if you need to install the latest iceweasel from backports just enter:
apt-get -t lenny-backports install iceweasel
I've always found Debian Stable+Backports to be more stable than the latest Ubuntu. What's more, with backports configured you can get the latest versions of popular packages.