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Phillip Kerman
2005-04-03, 19:42
>
> >Please try the latest nightly - either 6.0.1 or 6.1 - this
> should be fixed there.
> >
> >-D
>
>
> I've patiently waited weeks for the new version 6. Not even a
> week after its release and we're back to 'try the latest
> nightly'. Excellent!

I want to add to this sentiment but make sure that my feelings are
understood. I realize what it takes to write software as it's my main job
too. And, I think I speak for some of the other users when I say that even
if we get frustrated that we appreciate everyone's hard work. Plus, we're
all geeks to some degree if we signed up for this list.

But... man, isn't there some way the server can stabilize? That one idea of
two branches is great: one "slim" with core features that are solid and one
"out there" server with all the extra stuff. One assumption with the
branched idea, however, is that the "out there" features are the cause for
the server's flakiness.

Here's the bottom line and unfortunate truth: slimserver is not stable.
It's really cool... it can appear stable for long periods at a
time--provided you use it the same way every day. But there are just a few
things here and there that make it flake.

Here's my recent experience over the last FEW DAYS:
--disconnected wireless SB1s almost every morning.
--server crashes when I press shuffle.
--server crashes when I synch to players.
--server crashes when I dive into the internet radio.
--"now playing" displays title for previous song.
--database gets corrupt.

Now, on the good side, I don't think I've had one drop out yet with my SB2!
Yay.

Anyway, I hope this doesn't just turn into a thread about all that's bad. I
want more constructive suggestions.

But, I hear Michael's point: we're all so patient... I'll even be more
patient... in fact, I'm sold on the product--so I sort of have to be
patient. But what can we do here? Are there QA tools that can be applied
to open source software that aren't being used? Is this a natural outcome
of open source (I don't think so)?

Also, I think it's unreasonable to expect everyone will install the
nightlies. Sure, if you go and fix a problem for me I should either try the
fix or mellow out about the issue. I can see resentment on both sides:
personally, I don't feel like constantly installing the patches and those
who implement fixes don't want users saying we're not going to test their
fix.

Sincerely,
Phillip

Mike Kozlowski
2005-04-03, 20:41
On Sun, 3 Apr 2005, Phillip Kerman wrote:

> Here's the bottom line and unfortunate truth: slimserver is not stable.

5.4 is/was pretty good. Yeah, it had bugs, but no more than, say, Windows
Media Player.

6.0, on the other hand, is unusably bug-ridden -- but this really
shouldn't be a surprise, as the Slim people ripped out the guts of the
thing and reworked it. Based on knowing how unsmoothly that usually works
in any project, past experience with SlimServer releases, and looking at
the bug reports before 6.0 was deemed "release quality," it had to have
been clear to most people on this list that SlimServer 6.0 would
effectively be a beta product well after its official release.

It'd be nice if Slim stopped releasing things before they were ready; but
until then, the sensible thing to do if you want stability is to let other
people be the beta testers -- don't buy new products from Slim right away,
don't upgrade your server to a new release for a while, that sort of
thing.

> But, I hear Michael's point: we're all so patient... I'll even be more
> patient... in fact, I'm sold on the product--so I sort of have to be
> patient. But what can we do here? Are there QA tools that can be applied
> to open source software that aren't being used? Is this a natural outcome
> of open source (I don't think so)?

Slim could just stop releasing stuff before it's done. It was pretty
clear that 6.0 wasn't really a release version, but it got called one
anyway. If we were in a situation where final betas looked rock-solid,
but the actual releases revealed bugs from the more diverse setups of a
wider-ranging group of users, well, that's a tricky situation. But the
situation we're actually in, where the betas are known to be flaky and
buggy but are bumped to production anyway, is pretty straightforward to
solve: Just don't do that.

(And yes, I'm aware that from Slim's perspective, this isn't that simple.
They have to get their new product out there to drive new revenue/remain
competitive in a fast-paced market, can't do it without the new
software, and therefore need to accelerate releases. Still, I think in
the long-term, releasing stuff before it's finished is a lousy strategy.
I evangelize the hell out of Squeezeboxes, but there's no way I'm going to
tell anyone to buy a Squeezebox 2 for the near future.)

--
Mike Kozlowski
http://www.klio.org/mlk/

Daniel Cohen
2005-04-04, 00:40
On 3/4/05 at 7:42 pm -0700, Phillip Kerman wrote
>Here's my recent experience over the last FEW DAYS:
>--disconnected wireless SB1s almost every morning.

So is this new for you? I get it regularly, and it would be great to
have it fixed. But, unlike the other issues you mention, I suspect
that this may be beyond SlimDevices control. It is something to do
with the wireless network and what happens when the computer is
asleep for a long time. And if it is network-related, there's just so
many different forms of hardware out there that it may be almost
impossible to diagnose.

Also, of course, it's an easy thing for the user to deal with. It's
no more effort than actually switching on a piece of equipment.
--
Daniel Cohen