back to article Debian devs dedicate new version 9 to the late Ian Murdock

Debian 9, “Stretch”, has been released, and dedicated to the distribution's co-founder Ian Murdock. Murdock committed suicide in 2015 but as the Debian developers' dedication records, “It is difficult to exaggerate Ian's contribution to Free Software. He led the Debian Project from its inception in 1993 to 1996, wrote the …

  1. thames


    The Firefox/Iceweasel issue came about due to Mozilla's trademark policy conflicting with Debian's stable release policy. Mozilla would not allow Debian to create their own stable version of Firefox by backporting patches while still calling it Firefox.Mozilla has this degree of control due to trademark law. The code is free and open source, but the trademark belongs to Mozilla.

    Debian's policy is no version updates to stable releases, just security and bug fixes. Mozilla's policy was that distributors were not to create their own LTS version of the browser while still using the Firefox trademark.

    Mozilla now has their own official LTS version, which is what Debian packages in their stable distro. Since the impasse has been resolved, Firefox is now Firefox again in Debian.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Re: Iceweasel

      If anybody is interested in the LTS version of Mozilla, you can find it here:

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: Iceweasel

      "The Firefox/Iceweasel issue came about due to Mozilla's trademark policy conflicting with Debian's stable release policy"

      I think there might have been a bit more to it, but yeah that was a part of it allright. Also some of what Debian referred to as the "non-free" aspects of Firefox (back then) were excluded from iceweasel. Over time that has apparently been rectified, and we're all happy now. Hopefully.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

    What does the news today mean exactly... Don't know enough about UEFI / Secure boot gotchas.. What are the Do's / Don'ts etc.. Can someone please help as I only have experience of dual booting / installing Linux on older Win-XP-era-pre-UEFI laptops... Thanks in advance...

    1. Long John Brass

      Re: UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

      What are the Do's / Don'ts etc.. Can someone ...

      That is really easy to answer.... DON'T USE IT. IT'S CRAP.

    2. Sven Coenye

      Re: UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

      The one common step for now is that you need to disable secure boot. Windows Fast Boot needs to be off until the Debian installation is complete. Other than that, it is entirely up to what the hardware manufacturer has cooked/messed up. e.g. Stretch installs clean on a new HP Pavilion, but on Acer's SP3, you need to change the boot order in Windows to get Grub to take over.

      The one good thing about UEFI is support for GPT. Gone is the 4 partition limit and the need to basically wipe the drive to get around the Windows boot + OS + diagnostics + recovery primary partitions. You can now just shrink the main Windows partition and have the Debian installer reorganize the free space to suit.

      However, given yours dates to 2012, it likely still has the old DOS partition table so you may still be looking at some disk surgery to free up a partition.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge

        Re: UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

        no need to free up a partition. re-format the hard drive, make it a linux-only system. dual boot to windows is overrated. if you MUST have it, run it in a VM under Virtualbox.

        problem solved.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          'problem solved.'

          Sure sounds simple, but unfortunately Game dev work on Linux can be very tricky:

      2. Ramazan

        Re: good thing about UEFI is support for GPT

        Don't both GRUB and LILO support GPT? Even more, LILO doesn't give a shit about GPT/DOS/BSD/etc disklabels at all AFAIU...

        1. Weiss_von_Nichts

          Re: good thing about UEFI is support for GPT

          LILO won't be of much use with UEFI. EFIboot supports loading an actual file (by its filename) as a first boot stage - which is basically a good thing, just not supported by LILO which is limited to loading a linear sequence of bytes directly from the HDD (MBR, usually) to RAM and execute it. The right version(!) ofGRUB however will handle EFI boot quite nicely if the system was booted with active UEFI which should be no problem when booting from an install image.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

      @ Sven Coenye

      Ok, but what's involved in Disabling Secure Boot' / 'Windows Fast Boot'... Is it just a simple BIOS 'off' setting? G75 comes with 2 hard drives. Was planning on using 2nd drive for Mint. Therefore changing Boot Table on C for Grub, nothing more! Sound reasonable? ... Grub is still the trickiest part, as Mint install isn't informative. The 1st time I tried this on XP laptop I nuked the XP OS loader. It was only at a 2nd attempt that I realized I needed to pick Grub as the root of both. Then Windows and Linux could co-exist. Cheers for more info...

      @ Long John Brass

      If you mean Asus is crap, can't argue... The motherboard / onboard graphics failed on both G75 laptops (Nvidia 670m).... Now all I get are Instant Hardware Reboots from Overheating! But the core machine is still fine as a general laptop for now.

      1. Sven Coenye

        Re: UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

        Fast Startup/Fast Boot is a Windows 8/8.1/10 feature. The on/off button is hidden in the power settings dialog.

        Secure Boot is a toggle in the machine's UEFI settings. Some (e.g. HP) let you simply turn it off. Others, like Acer, require you to set a password first.

        Both options can be disabled without taking out the existing Windows installation.

        On Debian at least, Grub installs properly using the defaults suggested by the OS installer.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

          @Sven Coenye

          Many thanks!

      2. Weiss_von_Nichts

        Re: UEFI: Need to dual boot Mint on Asus G75 from 2012

        If you don't need secure boot, just disable it. The "secure" part of it was broken immediately but the annoying part persists.

        If you have to use it use the actual Debian installer (netinstall or full) keep secure boot active, create an EFI partition (VFAT, ~10MB) during the "partitioning" part of the install (where you might have to resize the existing system partitions or wipe the "recovery" partion) and let the installer do the rest of the job. In the best case everything will run just fine. Otherwise you might have to jump into "boot options" from the BIOS' startup and try which partition to boot. There are some quite detailled HOWTOs on the net, BTW.

  3. This post has been deleted by its author

  4. steelpillow Silver badge

    Sysvinit and Devuan

    Will be interesting to see whether any of the Good Things produced by the Devuan fork work their way back into Stretch + sysvinit, and ui/app developers stop assuming systemd is installed.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: Sysvinit and Devuan

      "developers stop assuming systemd is installed."

      we'd have to break the gnome dev's spirits before THAT will happen... sorta like "to ride a horse, you must first break him".

      they have too much control over too many open source GUI applications that we all use.

      I was APPALLED at what they did to evince. Fortunately Mate has Atril. But even that gave me some trouble on FreeBSD, when I tried to run it as "not the logged in user". Yeah, "all that CRAP" it apparently "needs". Or not. And that's the point.

      The existence of Devuan and the BSD's should be a mighty force against the borg-like systemd taking over the desktop software.

      /me regularly runs applications on the X11 desktop NOT as whatever user is currently logged in on the desktop. For customer projects, for example, I often create special users so I can store THEIR settings and files separate, etc. etc. and usually it's just a matter of "xhost +localhost" followed by "su - thatuser" and "setenv DISPLAY localhost:0.0" (or "export DISPLAY=localhost:0.0" for bash). THEN, the applications logged on as "the other user" run just fine alongside of everything else, often with a title that includes '(as thatuser)' so you can easily tell the difference. this makes even more sense for default editor settings and browser settings and things of THAT nature, where your company contract might require you to log in via google or use a different github login, and you don't want THAT globally polluting your REGULAR DESKTOP now do you?

      And of course reliance on systemd would SCREW THAT UP a LOT

    2. GrumpyOldBloke

      Re: Sysvinit and Devuan

      Looking forward to Devuan Stretch.

  5. wolfetone Silver badge

    That's a nice touch. I'm glad he's been remembered this way, but for as long as Debian is around his name will always be spoken of.

    Raise a glass to Ian.

  6. g00se


    fyi Devuan supports EFI booting already in Jessie

  7. keithpeter Silver badge

    Slackware and Debian

    Interesting to reflect on the contrasts between the two oldest surviving Linux distributions.

    Debian: tightly coupled dependency graph, heavy repackaging/patching of upstream applications, large developer community big on ideology

    Slackware: one man plus a small number of major contributors, no dependency graph to speak of but you can install package managers, what-you-get-is-what-upstream-push-out, pragmatic approach

    Interesting to see what the next 20 years will bring.

    PS:Ian Murdoch - was reading some interesting stuff on his blog when the news came through, horrible business.

  8. RichardB

    Law is tricky huh?

    They can't call the software what it's called because someone owns the trademark on the name, but they can call the other software something that someone else made... oh never mind, I'm sure they know what they are doing.

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