RunRev and Linux

Richmond Mathewson richmondmathewson at
Sun Apr 11 11:13:01 EDT 2010

  On 11/04/2010 11:34, Peter Alcibiades wrote:
> There are two questions, whether Ubuntu is the distribution of choice for a
> production environment, and whether Linux is the right platform to run
> Revolution on.

Yes, there are 2 questions; one (the one about RunRev) that should be 
tackled here;
and another (the one about Ubuntu) that is to be discussed somewhere else.

It does not really help either question to conflate the two; merely 
serves to
weaken both.
> The answer to the first question is no, use Debian Stable.  Ubuntu is the
> result of six monthly refreshings from Debian Experimental.  A production
> environment should use Debian Stable, if using a Debian based distribution
> at all, and only change out for the next version of Stable using apt-get
> dist-upgrade when this completes its move out of Testing, gets the Good
> Housekeeping Seal of Approval, and is marked Stable.

Well; I'm jolly sorry, but I have used Ubuntu for the last 5 years as a 
environment for the EFL programs for my EFL operation with never a hitch.

I, also, don't see whether one chooses to use Ubuntu, Slackware or 
Mickey Maclehose's
personal home-cooked distro what that has to do with the Linux flavour 
of RunRev.

I assume (correctly, I hope) that the RunRev folks give their Linux 
variant "a spin" on
the most common Linux distros before releasing it.

> You could also consider Slackware, famous for its stability, but its going
> to be more trouble to maintain.  In a production environment I would use
> either Debian or Slackware.  Maybe Open Suse could be a third possibility to
> consider.
> Is Rev on Linux a sensible choice for a production environment?  I wouldn't
> do it in its present form.  You'll be getting a version with substantial
> feature, stability and usability deficiencies compared to what you have now.
> It will be unusable on any monitor larger than 19 inch.  Fonts will not work
> properly.  Printing, both revPrintField and print card, will not work
> properly.  In my experience, the editor is so unstable as to be unusable.
> (Others however have not reproduced the editor issues that I have had).
> The IDE will not support basic desktop functionality - multiple virtual
> desktops.  It is said that this works perfectly well in the OSX version you
> have now, so if your users take advantage of virtual desktops, you will be
> losing that feature.  You will also find that important extra functionality
> of the IDE has migrated to plugins which will not run on Linux.  For
> instance, if you are using tRev, you'll find there is no Linux version.  If
> you use Rev Browser, that is not available in the Linux version.  If you use
> a Rev player, you'll find there isn't one.  You can use StackRunner, of
> course, and I have nothing but praise for it.  But its another step away
> from what you now have.
> I use nothing but Linux, and have never come upon an application from the
> Debian repositories which is of this poor quality.  Yes, there are some
> applications which have problems - the move from KDE 3.5 to 4 meant that
> many KDE apps had to be rewritten, and in the process there were some
> serious problems introduced, which took a while for users and developers to
> track down and fix.  But they were at least notified, acknowledged, and then
> fixed fairly promptly.
> People may think this is just a personal opinion caused by purely personal
> frustrations.  But if you go back through the list, you will find serious
> Linux users posting in escalatingly bad tempered terms until finally they
> leave in a fury.  Its not just me.
> The best advice one could give would be, get a workstation, put a 22 inch
> monitor on it, install Slackware (which means you will not be running Gnome,
> by the way), install only the three packages you speak of - Rev, Octave and
> R.  Maybe Office if you need it.  Geany - you are going to need a proper
> editor.  Give it to the most tolerant heavy user of Rev you have, ask
> him/her to use it exclusively for all development, and see how they feel at
> the end of a month or so.   You can be sure, if its Slackware, that any
> problems are not down to the distribution, and you can be sure that if mine
> are down to Debian, you will not get them, and you can be sure that you are
> not running into the instabilities which are fairly notorious with Ubuntu's
> release schedule.  ts about as pure a test as you'll get of whether you are
> safe to go ahead.
> It would be most valuable to Linux users of Rev, and maybe also to Rev the
> company, to have properly documented feedback on what you find, if you do
> this.  There is still time, just, to make Rev for Linux into a serious
> developer tool that one could recommend unequivocally, and maybe if enough
> of us work at it, we can document clearly what needs to be done, help in
> testing, and get it done.
> Personally, I am on the edge with this.  I have obtained a license for Real
> Basic, and I've got a copy of the best PyQT book, "Rapid Gui Programming
> with Python and Qt".  I have written an open letter to Kevin, which I am
> restraining myself from sending.  The Rev people are very nice, decent
> people, the list is wonderfully helpful and patient.  The language itself is
> superb, when it works.  Its just, if it doesn't have a usable editor, usable
> printing, proper font support, a readable IDE, how on earth am I supposed to
> get any work done in it?

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