Redhat Can Bite My Shiny Metal Ass

by Charles Miller on October 27, 2003

Have I mentioned recently that Redhat sucks?

A while back, I had a problem with Redhat, whereby RPM wasn't warning me that a particular upgrade would render my whole system unbootable. Today, I got this official Redhat reply to the bug report I submitted on the subject:

Because Unix always gives the sysadmin enough rope to shoot him/herself. If you administrate a system you are supposed to know what you do.

Ignoring for a moment, the disgusting word 'administrate' (what's wrong with 'administer'?), I would like to draw attention to the concept of the "package manager". The package manager is the reason we use modern Linux distributions instead of just unpacking tarballs, Slackware-style. The whole point of having a package manager is so that it will ensure that software installations and upgrades are performed cleanly: that upgrading from A to B doesn't break C (or in this case, that upgrading from A to B doesn't break B).

When a package manager, in this case Redhat's 'rpm' can not handle the task it was meant to perform, that distribution is broken. Turning around and blaming the victim for the heinous crime of trusting the package manager to do what it was supposed to do is just... totally wrong.

Suffice to say, from this day henceforth, I will do my utmost to convince any client, customer, employer, friend, neighbour, or anyone I overhear discussing Linux in the pub that Redhat is a useless pile of fetid dingo's kidneys, and that you'd be more productive having someone beat you over the head with a large block of wood than attempt to use it.

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