Unbuntu vs. Debian: Which is Bigger?

Depending on how you look at it, Ubuntu's gain could be Debian's loss.
debianlogo.png From the 'Is Debian's failure, Ubuntu's Linux success?' files:

This week's Jaunty Jackalope release was Ubuntu's 10th release and the 9th release that I've used myself. I first became aware of Ubuntu in 2005 with the 'Hoary Hedgehog' release for only one reason, Debian Sarge was AWOL.

Debian is the basis for Ubuntu, but in some ways you can argue that Ubuntu has at this point, exceeded Debian. The great 'failure' of Debian is also it's great strength. Debian hasn't been able to put out releases in a regularly scheduled format in years -- something developers will commonly attribute to not making a release until it's ready.

While Debian has struggled on release dates (getting better lately), Ubuntu comes out with its releases like clockwork. Though Debian has been tremendous strides since Sarge with its desktop installation, Ubuntu has become one of the most popular Linux distribution for the desktop period.

On the server, Ubuntu is now ramping its efforts too, which is an area where Mark Shuttleworth also sees a place where Ubuntu can exceed what Debian does.
"We see Debian as the system administrators choice," Shuttleworth said during a conference call announcing Jaunty. "And we see Ubuntu as bringing a level of corporate identity and backing to that platform which makes it acceptable and palatable in a large scale organizational environments."

Yes, I know -- Debian is a community GNU/Linux distribution. I also know that others including Debian founder (and now Sun employee) Ian Murdock tried to get Debian into commercial enterprises with his firm Progeny. There was even something called the Debian Common Core Alliance (DCCA) at one point that was going to push comemrcial adoption. Those efforts are now gone.

There is another though. HP is a big backer of Debian and HP today has commercial support for Debian.

Debian is also very widely deployed in non-commercial instances on uncounted servers globally. Certainly there are alot of instances where a commercially supported Linux is not necessary on a server and Debian fits in well there.

That strength in the community is also something that Ubuntu and Shuttleworth are banking on to grow Ubuntu's server business.
"Our heritage in Debian postions us to be a very strong platform for common infrastructure type work on Linux servers inside large organizations from Government through to Universities," Shuttleworth said. "In Debian we have a foundation that is very modular perhaps more modular than any other version of Linux."
Has the apprentice become the master now?

One thing is for sure, Ubuntu continues to be built on the shoulders of Debian. Depending on how you look at it that's a good thing for Debian (or bad) and it's definitely a good thing for Ubuntu.

Article courtesy of InternetNews.com.




Tags: Linux, server, Ubuntu, Debian, HP


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