debian versus slackware

Jude DaShiell jdashiel at
Thu Nov 25 04:20:26 EST 2010

If you install slackware, there's something to consider.  slackware 
recommends using the slackpkg package to do updates and upgrades.  This 
package is fine so long as you do understand it has no means of excluding 
packages to be upgraded.  That normally wouldn't be a problem except that 
slackware does not make upgraded speakup patched kernels available for 
download and slackware neither makes reference to kernel types in kernel 
names so a user can pick for instance the speakup.s kernel as opposed to 
the bear.i kernel to download.  Those kernels get put on CD's and sent out 
but don't get made available in the slackware mirrors for upgrade so you 
will replace your speakup-enabled kernel with a stock kernel without 
speakup patches applied when you do a kernel upgrade using slackpkg.  The 
way around this problem if you don't mind building a new speakup-enabled 
slackware kernel after download (I never was able to figure out how to get 
that process done successfully), is to not use slackpkg to do updates and 
upgrades but to download and use slapt-get which does allow for exclusions 
and has kernel upgrades excluded by default.  This means you can modify 
slapt-getrc when you're ready to upgrade your kernel and deal with those 
consequences as best you're able to once done.  Another problem with 
slackware is that the stable and current words not only do not appear in 
the kernel names, they don't even appear in /etc/slackware-version or on 
the electronic disk label written on slackware CD's or in any of the 
printed material that comes packaged with each disk set but these are 
problems for those of us who have slackware subscriptions.  This means 
that if you subscribe to slackware, pick one and only one type of 
distribution you want to get either stable or current and that way you'll 
know what you just installed when the disks get to you.  I may have got 
two copies of stable and really with the lack of identification on the 
disk media and printed materials I have no way to prove otherwise.  Other 
than that, yes slackware does support speakup well.

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