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My Journey to Debian Stable

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Posted (edited)

I recently upgraded my Thinkpad T430 to Debian Buster - so for a while I'll be running Debian Testing. However in a couple of weeks Buster will become Debian Stable, and I'm OK with that.

Conventional Internet thought is that Stable is great for servers, but a desktop user would be better off with Testing or even Unstable. I find that Stable makes the most sense for me for a few reasons:

  1. I have old hardware (My Thinkpad is from 2013) and I don't need bleeding edge kernels or graphics stacks.
  2. Both Debian Testing and Unstable have strange quirks that I find unsuitable. Testing can go months without significant updates during the hard freeze before it becomes the new stable. Unstable has tons of updates and once in a while is unsafe to update. Stable is more - well, stable.
  3. I tend to go with the defaults - GNOME with a few tweaks - so I don't care if I'm running an old desktop environment.
  4. I tend to enable backports so I will get software updates if needed.
  5. Debian Stable gives me the necessary security updates faster than Testing when it is frozen.
  6. When I take my Thinkpad on holiday, I don't always have the fastest connection so I don't want to download massive updates.
  7. Mostly I'm an old school Linux guy. If it ain't broke...

I can see the advantages of a real rolling release distro but in my view that is not Debian. Arch fits the pattern much better. The reason Debian has the Testing and Unstable branches is to make the next Stable release.

Your mileage may vary, but Debian Stable works best for me.

Edited by raymac46
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