Letters to the Editor

Readers sound off.
Useless Distributions Article

I just purchased a copy of the September 1996 issue of Linux Journal. I was extremely disappointed that you are excluding any mention of bugs from your review articles. Rely on word of mouth? Then why the devil did I just pay $4.00 for your silly journal!! I know you don't want to offend any potential advertisers, but this is ridiculous. Until you can be bothered to report on what these packages are REALLY like, your journal does not have any value.

—Tim Gawne tgawne@icare.opt.uab.edu

Texas OODB

I just finished reading your article on the Texas OODB in July's Linux Journal.

One free system you did not mention was Exodus (from the now famous OO7 benchmark debacle with Object Store). I have been using Exodus for about two years with its E (C++ extension) for persistence. It is exceptional.

I note from its archive (cs.uws.edu) the latest version of E has been removed (based on gcc-2.5.8), maybe because of several bugs in the release (which I tripped over and have since fixed). The stable release is based on gcc-2.3.3.

I have just completed the port of E-2.5.8 to Solaris 2.4 & 5 and should be releasing it, along with the fixes, back to the archive shortly.

By the way, Exodus does run under Linux and does support a very extensive multi-user, multi-server caching system called “sm”. sm also supports a two phase commit and checkpointing.

I agree about OODB speed differences—they make systems like “Manacle” look like the dinosaurs they are.

—Stephen Dennis dennis@rover.research.canon.com.au

Israeli Linux Users Group

I want to give you an update on the Israeli Linux Users Group. First, we now have our own domain. The official web site is www.linux.org.il, and a full-scale sunsite-mirroring FTP site is on the way. We are also considering becoming an official non-profit organization, which might be interesting for readers. Subscription to our mailing list can be done at www.linux.org.il/Linux-il-sub.html or by sending mail to majordomo@linux.org.il with the subject line empty and the body containing “subscribe linux-il [address]”.

Finally, I just want to ask that any feedback and comments sent to you as a result of the article also be forwarded to me. I'll make sure the entire group receives them.

—Shay Rojansky roji@cs.huji.ac.il


Thanks to everyone there for a wonderful source of information and advertisements specific to Linux. I receive many magazines each month, but the copy of LJ I pick up at the newsstand each month (until now) is by far my favorite. Keep up the good work! (And if there are any technical employment opportunities at LJ, I would love to hear about them.)

I would like to know as much as possible about the projected availability of the back issues. I want to get one of each of the issues still available, so it would help to know which to order first. I don't want to miss one by waiting too long.

Thanks in advance.

—Walter Seefeld wseefeld@memphisonline.com

Article Wish List

I'm writing to congratulate you on yet another fine issue of the Linux Journal. Your journal is the only one I read from cover to cover any more. Here are a few opinions and comments I'd like to pass on:

  • Please convey to Michael Johnson he did a marvelous job in getting LJ started. I always enjoyed his technical articles, and I wish him well in his new position with Red Hat.

  • I think your mix of newbie to “not so newbie” articles varies a little between issues but, on the whole, is about right (for me anyway).

  • I think your “What is Linux” section should highlight the contributions of the FSF, BSD, MIT and others a little more prominently. Although their software wasn't written to support the Linux project (but it does now), Linux would be much the poorer without them (it doesn't diminish Linux in any way to provide this acknowledgement).

  • Please continue to run as many articles as possible on introductions to programming tools under Linux. The “Getting to Know gdb” article was a good example of this type of article.

  • I liked your interview with Linus Torvalds. It would be very interesting to see more articles in this vein. I suggest you interview additional Linux luminaries such as Alan Cox, Werner Almesberger, Matt Welsh, Lars Wirzenius, Remy Card, Rick Faith, Leonard Zubkoff, Bjorne Ekwall, Al Longyear, Donald Becker, and many others too numerous to mention.

  • I'd also be quite interested in getting to know a little more about Linux entrepreneurs like Phil Hughes, Mark Bolzern, Erik Troan and many others.

  • While I'm on the topic of interviews, a good complement to the Linux Distributions review article would be short bios on the founders of the distributions. (I'm particularly fascinated by the Debian project, its philosophy, and its contributors.)

  • Interviews with Unix luminaries like Richard Stallman, Larry Wall and others would also be very illuminating.

  • An article on the use of Linux for real-time applications would be interesting. There are a number of groups working on this, and perhaps you could convince their coordinators to contribute an article or two.

  • An article surveying free and non-free database software would be very useful.

Well, that's enough opinions and suggestions for one letter! Keep up the good work!

—Nick Busigin nick@xwing.org