Updating to Slackware 14.2
All computer systems in the house are now updated to Slackware 14.2 64-bit.
Updating all systems was a rough ride.
Despite Slackware being my primary operating system, I found updating from 14.1 to 14.2 to be a frustrating journey. Usually I update Slackware after a few days of testing. This time I needed a couple of months.
First I needed to update all systems from 14.1 32-bit to 14.1 64-bit. That transition went without much noise and presented no memorable hurdles.
Updating thereafter to 14.2 involved more than a little kicking and screaming.
The long development cycle likely played a role. Slackware 14.1 was released November 4, 2013. Slackware 14.2 was released June 30, 2016. That is two and half years. Traditionally new Slackware releases came at a pace of about 9 months.
There was too much change in the underlying base between releases.
My biggest frustration was the number of paper cuts. I found solutions and work-arounds, some of which I shared here, but my unresolved bug list remains open.
I do not expect that from Slackware. I do not think the cause is the Slackware design or the developers. I think the cause is simply so much changes so fast in the Linux ecosystem that the result is something is always breaking. Two and half years between releases means many opportunities for breakage.
In the free/libre software world geek creds seem to have a higher priority than quality assurance.
Generally, the rapid pace of development is hurting software. I wish developers would slow the pace to allow people to breath.
For now a sane strategy is to leave sleeping dogs lie for a few weeks. I will not be surprised if a few more bugs and quirks appear. Let the proverbial dust settle and relax.