Talk:Rolling release

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mandriva cooker[edit]

i think mandriva cooker is a rolling release? also, grml, which is debian unstable. and finnix, a debian testing. -- —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:10, 2 March 2009 (UTC)

I'm not a Debian expert, but it's my understanding that Debian Stable is not a rolling release. Testing and Unstable are rolling releases but Stable is not.

-- (talk) 02:11, 20 August 2008 (UTC)

I'm not an expert either, but i don't think that debian is a rolling release...unstable is waiting the release of the new stable to accept new package...

EMerzh (talk) 10:21, 31 December 2008 (UTC)

I suggest only listing "stable" rolling release OSs/Distributions. Development versions don't really make sense. -- (talk) 23:17, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

what constitutes a rolling release?[edit]

Every distribution maintains a development branch that is continually updated between releases. What separates a branch like debian testing from a rolling release like gentoo is that testing is an intended release, one that will get frozen someday and released. On the other hand, gentoo maintains one branch which is never intended to be frozen, and will be updated indefinitely. I question why this article lists such development releases as rolling releases. Reub2000 (talk) 18:51, 7 October 2009 (UTC)

I don't think dev-branches are rolling releases though some could be called "rolling dev-branches". I would call Debian-testing a "cyclical" dev-branch and call distros like LMDE and antiX "cyclical releases" if they adopt a cyclical model, or "semi-rolling releases" if they do a good job of making it as rolling as possible and use a semi-rolling model. I would also call PCLinuxOS a "semi-rolling release" as it re-bases the Mandriva base every-so-often, requiring a reinstall. I think aptosid is close to being a rolling release as Sid is a rolling dev-branch and aptosid use a rolling release model, but personally I'd call it a psuedo-rolling release as it's really Sid made as rolling as possible. Most people seem to call LMDE, antiX, aptosid & PCLinuxOS rolling releases though. Mind you, many also call dev-branches "rolling releases", which is why I think "rolling dev-branch" is a better term as it helps to clarify that it's actually a dev-branch, not a release, and that the distro doesn't use a rolling release development model. Just my thoughts on the matter. User2357 (talk) 17:31, 14 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:33, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

Examples of development releases[edit]

Since pretty much every distribution maintains a development branch, it is beyond encyclopedic to list them all. I'm limiting the list to only distros that are in the top 5 on distrowatch. Reub2000 (talk) 06:35, 23 November 2009 (UTC)


Sabayon is not a true rolling release. What makes Sabayon differ from a gentoo system is the entropy package manager which is versioned as opposed to rolling. You can still use a sabayon and get upgrades after the version is obsolete but then it simply becomes a gentoo system !

It would be wise not to mention sabayon as a true rolling release distro as it will only create disappointement ... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:09, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

Since Branch 5 Sabayon is a rolling release. Above comment is nonsense. ( —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:59, 1 December 2010 (UTC)

Explanation, as per the Sabayon Linux FAQ:
"Sabayon Linux is a 'rolling release' distro. Therefore, if you have upgraded your installation via Entropy or Portage then your installation will no longer be the version recorded in /etc/sabayon-release, as that file tells you the version of the LiveCD/DVD that you used to install Sabayon Linux." G.Ceara (talk) 22:16, 22 December 2010 (UTC)


Just wondered why openSUSE-tumbleweed was removed? As far as I'm aware (though I don't use it) it's a new rolling release version of openSUSE that uses their new rolling "tumbleweed" repo. User2357 (talk) 17:31, 14 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:34, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

RE: To be clear, I'm not the one who removed the mention of the openSUSE Tumbleweed project from the article. If I were to assume why it had been removed, I would guess that it is because the project is still in the proof-of-concept/testing phase. If/when the project is successfully implemented, I would recommend its inclusion in the article at that time. G.Ceara (talk) 22:58, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

Thanks G.Ceara for the above post. I was already aware it wasn't yourself who removed it, as it seemed to have been Cyberdiablo. I've no doubt Cyberdiablo removed openSUSE-tumbleweed for good reason and I've no issues with it being removed; I was merely curious as to what the reason was. BTW I'd really like to thank Cyberdiablo for doing a brilliant and very appreciated job of tiding up my contributions [I've only just started contributing to Wikipedia] to be in better keeping with Wikipedia's encyclopaedic article style. If G.Ceara's guess as to the reason for the removal is correct, then, I wonder whether there may be merit in re-inserting openSUSE-tumbleweed as a hidden comment, to be uncommented once the project has matured sufficiently for its inclusion in the list? User2357 (talk) 03:23, 17 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:34, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

Sorcerer Linux[edit]

Does anyone know if Sorcerer is rolling and where to find a good citation if it is? User2357 (talk) 17:31, 14 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:35, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

Found out the answer: yes it is rolling release. (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:35, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

Linux From Scratch[edit]

Is Linux From Scratch (aka LFS) rolling release – or able to be made rolling release – and if so should it be included? P.S. BTW I know it's a book pointing the user at source code, but I've never used it. User2357 (talk) 17:31, 14 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:36, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

Chakra GNU/Linux[edit]

As of 15/11/2011, Chakra GNU/Linux is listed as being a rolling release distribution in the article. While Chakra is a fork of Arch Linux, its (Chakra's) aim is a "half-rolling release model", not a full rolling release model like Arch. I suggest that it be removed from the article, or at least better explained.
Explanation, as per the Chakra GNU/Linux Wiki:
"From the beginning, the whole idea of Chakra was based upon the concept of a "half-rolling release model", a rolling release, with a stable base. What this means is Chakra's core packages (graphics, sound, etc.) are frozen and are only updated for security fixes. Core packages are only upgraded after the latest versions have been thoroughly tested as part of our continous testing cycle, before being moved to the stable repositories (about every six months). This stable base, allows us to keep the programs stable. Applications (web-browsers, games, media-players, office-suites, etc) are upgraded following a rolling-release model, and generally available immediately upon their release." G.Ceara (talk) 22:58, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

Thanks G.Ceara for catching my mistake; I didn't realise that it's only semi-rolling! I'm the one to blame for its inclusion as I added it to the example list [along with Unity, Yoper, Funtoo, Sabayon, Foresight, antiX, KahelOS, ArchBang, etc] to make the list a bit more comprehensive. In future I'll propose an additional distro on the talk page before adding it, to help avoid such errors. I was wondering whether or not we should add another section to the article for "semi-rolling release" distros. For example, distros that very occasionally require a re-install to upgrade (like PCLinuxOS), or ones that are based on a cyclical base & repos (like LMDE & antiX), might qualify for moving to such a section. It would allow a clear distinction between distros that are truly 100% rolling and distros that are only partially rolling. Anyway, it's just a thought, but I'd be interested whether anyone has an opinion on this. --BTW, for the moment [like with PCLinuxOS] I've put "(partial)" next to Chakra to indicate it's not 100% rolling. I've also qualified the text beneath the example list so it explains that that those labelled "(partial)" are not 100% rolling. I hope that's okay as an interim measure, but do undo/change my edit as you see fit. User2357 (talk) 04:30, 17 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:36, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

If the general consensus is to include partial rolling releases, a separate section would be appropriate. An explanation of what sets these apart from full rolling releases would be necessary. I can see both sides of the argument in terms of their inclusion in or exclusion from the article. G.Ceara (talk) 13:25, 17 January 2011 (UTC)

Non-Linux rolling releases[edit]

Arch Hurd G.Ceara (talk) 01:40, 16 January 2011 (UTC)

List of rolling release Linux distributions[edit]

Should we start a separate "List of rolling release Linux distributions" Wikipedia page that also gives a summary of each rolling distro? Then this page could be kept simply to explain the term "rolling release". It would be good to have a comprehensive list of rolling distros and I think a dedicated page for such would be better than using this page or the "List of Linux distributions" page. Please add your thoughts. User2357 (talk) 17:31, 14 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:37, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

I do not think a list page is needed at this time, as it would be pretty short. As for the summaries, it would be sufficient just to link to each distro's individual Wikipedia article, or, should a distro not yet have a Wikipedia article, link to its website. I think adding summaries would be somewhat redundant. As for article content, I think an article that strictly focused on what constitutes a rolling release (without also focusing on the current rolling release landscape) would be rather bereft of content, and there are currently not so many rolling release distros out there as to junk up the article by including them. Should rolling releases become more prevalent, I could see dividing the page into a couple of pages, but for now I see no reason to do so. G.Ceara (talk) 22:58, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

My proposal was simply to get thoughts on the matter of where on Wikipedia a comprehensive list of rolling distros should be. I think the points raised in the above post by G.Ceara are good ones. If everyone else agrees that a comprehensive list of rolling distros wont overload the page for the foreseeable future, maintaining such a list on this page and improving the indication of rolling distros on the "List of Linux distributions page" (which I'm working on) sounds fine. Unless anybody else sees good reason to produce such a "List of rolling release distributions" page, I am dropping the proposal. Thanks for the feedback. User2357 (talk) 02:42, 17 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:37, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

See also[edit]

Since the Gentoo Linux and Arch Linux Wikipedia articles are already linked to under the "Examples" section, perhaps the links for them can be removed from the "See also" section? Should there ever be need for a "List of rolling release distributions" page, a link for it could later be added to the "See also" section. I would keep the link to the Wikipedia article on release engineering in the "See also" section though. G.Ceara (talk) 00:50, 16 January 2011 (UTC)

Need for good sources[edit]

This article is obviously lacking references/citations; I know this because (besides the blatant banner) I've added stuff myself without sourcing it. I added some external links (thanks to whoever added and will look at finding some sources when I next have a spare moment (bit busy just now). Please add "citation needed" indicators to parts most in need of such. User2357 (talk) 17:59, 14 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:38, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

In addition to User2357's comment, I would like to add that I think there is need for some consistent criteria to foster integrity in the article. I think content additions/retractions should be well-considered before being made. I have chosen not to make any edits to the article myself, instead I have made a few suggestions for alterations here on the talk page, and have included supporting links. As to criteria for including distros in the article, I think a distro's own 'offical' documentation (user forum posts don't meet that standard) should include mention of it being a rolling release in order for it to be considered for inclusion in the article. G.Ceara (talk) 22:58, 15 January 2011 (UTC)

I agree with the above comment by G.Ceara. However, I would point out that some rolling distros don't always make obvious mention whether they're rolling (or not) on their websites or in their documentation. In such situations would an email to the lead developer suffice? If it would it still leaves the problem of citing a good source unless the lead developer can direct us to one. User2357 (talk) 02:52, 17 January 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:38, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

I would consider citable developer commentary as adequate in terms of being a reliable source. In cases where the quality/credibility of sources can't be established, then I would recommend against their usage. Along those lines, I have found documentation mention (linked herein) of the rolling release model for the following distros already listed in the article: antiX, Arch Linux, Foresight Linux, Gentoo Linux, KahelOS, Linux Mint Debian Edition, Sabayon Linux, Unity Linux, and Yoper Linux. Also for the aforementioned work-in-progress openSUSE Tumbleweed project, as well as the (presently unlisted) GNU Hurd-based Arch Hurd. PS As regards contacting developers directly, while some would be gracious in response, others might not take kindly to being approached with non-development related matters. G.Ceara (talk) 13:25, 17 January 2011 (UTC)

As of 12/03/2011, the reference (as noted in the Examples section) for Arch Linux (#4) actually links to a page on aptosid; the reference for aptosid (#6) actually links to a page on Unity Linux. These need to be corrected. G.Ceara (talk) 11:38, 12 March 2011 (UTC) [Edit: This has since been corrected (checked on 07/01/2012). -G.Ceara]

9 May 2011- Though the Examples section has now been reordered, the links are still incorrect. The reference for Arch Linux (#1) incorrectly links to the Official aptosid Manual and the reference for aptosid (#3) incorrectly links to the Official Unity Documentation. As I currently have no account with Wikipedia, presently it would be best that I not edit the article myself, so I will leave that to be done by someone who is registered. G.Ceara (talk) 21:45, 9 May 2011 (UTC) [Edit: This has since been corrected (checked on 07/01/2012). -G.Ceara]

Why aren't Debian Testing/Unstable considered rolling release?[edit]

They match all the qualifiers, but I never see them referred to as rolling release distributions. (talk) 18:16, 6 March 2011 (UTC)

Debian "testing" is subject to freeze. See the What about "testing"? How is it `frozen'? section of chapter 6 of the Debian GNU/Linux FAQ. Both Debian "unstable" and "testing" serve primarily as means to test software before the project includes it in a release version, such as Debian GNU/Linux 6.0. G.Ceara (talk) 10:40, 12 March 2011 (UTC)

9 May 2011- The Debian Project is currently engaged in discussion on making a rolling release (or other possible changes). If the Debian Project does create an actual rolling release, it should be added to article when finalised, just as openSUSE Tumbleweed has been. G.Ceara (talk) 21:45, 9 May 2011 (UTC)

Rolling distributions added (or proposed to be added) to the list[edit]

21 July 2011- I've done some minor additions to the list: Parabola Linux, CTK-Arch; also added LMDE-KDE to the LMDE bit. I hope that's OK and of course edit/delete as you see fit. :-) -- User2357 User2357 (talk) comment added by User2357 00:30, 21 July 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:40, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

30 July 2011- I think perhaps the entry under "External links" is misleading. The link target is said to be "A web site about rolling releases", but it seems that the page is specifically the Arch Linux community newsletter. Quoting from the "about" page: "Rolling Release is the definitive forum for the dissemination of news by the Arch Linux community, for the Arch Linux community." Fowlay (talk) 08:27, 30 July 2011 (UTC)

Frugalware has been added to the page. I'm not sure that it qualifies. I've done some searching and in their newsletter it is described as a "stabilized rolling release distro" by users (see and however on the Arch Linux wiki ( it says "Frugalware has a scheduled release cycle" opposed to Arch's rolling release model. Frugalware has a '-current' (updated daily) and a '-stable' (updated every 6 months) branch. If the '-current' branch is a development branch, I don't think Frugalware qualifies. Since its status is uncertain (well to me anyway), I've commented out Frugalware (I hope that's OK) until a citation can be found. If anyone objects to me commenting it out, feel free to un-comment it, of course :-) --User2357 22:37, 15 August 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:40, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

I'm not sure if listing known derivatives adds value to the article, but here are a few more: Manjaro Linux (Arch-based), siduction (fork of aptosid) and Semplice (Debian sid-based). For Arch-based distributions, it might be tidier just to link to the "Arch Based Distributions (Active)" article in the ArchWiki. -G.Ceara

Thanks G.Ceara. I added your suggestions to the list (I'd been meaning to add siduction and Semplice but hadn't come across Manjaro). I get your point regarding the ArchWiki suggestion, but not all the distros listed there are rolling (e.g. ConnochaetOS, which last year I checked with one of their devs is non-rolling). I've been playing about with a page "List of rolling release distributions" in my (rather messy) sandbox. It's a *VERY* rough sketch (not even a draft) and does NOT meet the Wikipedia Manual of Style guidelines. At the moment I'm really just using it to practice editing (I'm just a newbie editor and Linux user) and for personal reference. The only reason I started it was just for a bit of a laugh and in case the rolling release list gets too long some day in the distant future. It's not even in a fit state for viewing to be honest, but I don't think such a page is needed anytime soon anyway. When it gets to the point of being presentable someday (far, far off, when I have more time and editing experience) I'll post a link to it on this page for comments. Annoy@mouse ) 17:34, 30 January 2012 (UTC)

Specialist, small/minor and non-English-language distributions[edit]

21 July 2011- Should this page omit such rolling distros or should there be a SMALL section simply listing them by name under a suitable heading? For example, I think I read the Spanish Gentoo-based distro UTUTO is rolling, but it dropped English support and has a Spanish-only website. I can think of a few others that fit this criteria. I have no real opinion on the matter but thought some of you might. What qualifies a rolling distro for mention? Should the list try to be "complete" and "definitive" or focus only on what a rolling release is and cite rolling distros that are likely to be of relevance and of interest to the reader? -- User2357 User2357 (talk) 01:02, 21 July 2011 (UTC)

Linux bias?[edit]

It appears that this article is severely biased toward GNU/Linux. Granted, GNU/Linux is probably one (if not the) best examples of rolling release, but the article should mention that it doesn't apply to GNU/Linux specifically. --ClassixRetroX (talk) 00:17, 6 August 2011 (UTC)

There's Arch Hurd and the Gentoo/*BSDs mentioned. I can't think of many other projects that are rolling and don't use the Linux kernel. Most rolling non-Linux distros are off-shoot of pre-existing Linux distros. ClassixRetroX, if there are any rolling non-Linux distros you think should be added, please post them on this page (in this section) and I'll happily add them to the page for you. Personally, I feel the list should be as comprehensive as possible [if it gets too big we can always start a "List of rolling distributions" page] simply because I don't know of a comprehensive and definitive list anywhere on the web; please correct me and let me know if any of you have. --User2357 (7 August 2011) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:40, 11 November 2011 (UTC))


Is OpenVMS rolling (and for that matter FreeVMS)? OpenVMS is described as having a "rolling upgrades" update system (on wikipedia). If this is merely upgrading between fixed releases without reinstall, should it be included? After all, Fedora and Ubuntu, among others, have this capability. Should OSs that have a "rolling upgrade" feature be mentioned, if only to help distinguish them from rolling releases? --User2357 03:42, 16 September 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:41, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

Sections that need to be improved[edit]

This article has gained may contain original research and needs additional citations for verification (September 2011). Please help indicate text that need citations using "citation needed" and text that may contain original research by leaving a post on this page, so that editors can help improve the disputed text and discuss whether or not it should be removed. Many thanks for your help in improving this article. --User2357 18:59, 28 September 2011 (UTC) (now known as Annoyamouse (talk) 02:43, 11 November 2011 (UTC))

The writing is high quality, and I think almost all of it is correct, but it isn't verifiable because the sources aren't cited. Rolling release#Development models and Rolling release#Development branches are both unreferenced and Rolling release#Comparison of rolling & fixed releases just has one inline citation (it's a high quality one that could be used elsewhere in the article too). The list of rolling/non-rolling distributions is easily verifiable (you can just click through to the articles and check those references) and that's what all the other references are for. However, those are primary sources and the analysis (dividing distributions into a few categories and elaborating on the pros and cons) needs to be backed up by sources or it is original research. There are lots of articles covering this, so references shouldn't be too hard to find. [1] [2] strcat (talk) 20:42, 28 September 2011 (UTC)

As of 07/01/2012, Reference 20 ("Sabayon 4 and future Entropy") is a dead link. Perhaps consider linking to either the "FAQ" article or the "Sabayon Linux" article on the Sabayon Wiki instead. -G.Ceara

Thanks, G.Cera. Sorry, I've been busy for a bit, but I've now fixed the reference you mention. I also added some distros you suggested that I'd been meaning to add myself (siduction, etc).Annoy@mouse ) 04:17, 27 January 2012 (UTC)

I'm inclined to remove the banners at the top of the article, but would like feedback from other editors. I think Strcat's main points have mostly been addressed, although I'm aware the article still needs major work and possibly an expert to look at it. I'm thinking of adding the article to WikiProject Computing and requesting some help on it. Does anyone else think this would be worthwhile? I wont remove the banners for now as I think Strcat was the editor who added them, so I'll see what Strcat thinks before doing anything. Some inline [citation needed] and [original research?] indicators would be useful though, so that I know more specifically what needs fixing and when it's fixed. I have nothing against banners, it's just that inline indicators are more specific and easier to know when the issue's been fixed. :-) Annoy@mouse ) 04:17, 27 January 2012 (UTC)

I think a key component will just be maintaining consistency, objectivity, and direction. Rather than Random Person P doing a baseless drive-by edit (ex. "AmigaOS is a rolling release because I think I remember somebody on IRC mentioning that it was"), my hope is that (for debatable additions) people will discuss the changes/improvements they want to see here on the article's talk page first. IMO, the article looks a little cluttered/jumbled right now, but content-wise it has come a long way, so good job to those responsible. Also, I can understand the inclusion of the "Counter-examples: non-rolling releases" section to address misunderstandings and forestall unnecessary edits, but I wonder if in some form that content should be moved to the talk page instead (such as a section at the very beginning of the talk page outlining the issue). For example, if I am reading an article about *BSDs, I don't expect to see a section on what operating systems aren't *BSDs. The "Common myths, misconceptions" section is probably sufficient to address the matter within the article itself. Finally, sound documentation is a must. All in all, the article is slowly getting better, we just need to make sure it will adhere to Wikipedia guidelines and professional standards in general. -G.Ceara — leave me alone, nefarious SineBot -- 23:07, 27 January 2012 (UTC)

G.Cera, in response to your good point regarding the "Counter-examples: non-rolling releases" section, I propose, for consideration, creating a stub article entitled "Non-rolling release" and copying the entirety of the section's content to there. The four paragraphs before the "List of non-rolling release operating systems and software distributions" sub-section could still be displayed in this article with See Non-rolling release added at the top of the section, and the "Examples of popular non-rolling release operating systems and software distributions include Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, most BSDs and most Linux distributions." sentence tagged onto the end of the forth paragraph. This is fairly standard in Wikipedia articles, for what I see. I agree with G.Cera's comments above and think this might be a viable solution. I would be grateful if editors could post their thoughts on this proposal, as it is a significant article alteration and I'd like editor consensus before going ahead with it. Please include any views on the merit of the proposal (whether positive or critical); just stick 'em at the bottom of this section. I'm hopping feedback will be such as to allow a decision on this by April, but if longer deliberation's needed that's fine. :-) Annoy@mouse ) 13:22, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

Also, if G.Cera (I know you like to stick to the Talk page) or any other editors have any suggestions on improving the article (text/layout/whatever) please post your thoughts in this section of the talk page and I'll be more than happy to make the relevant edits, if you prefer not to edit the article directly. Input is always welcome on Wikipedia! Thanks as always. :-) Annoy@mouse ) 13:22, 5 March 2012 (UTC)

Why is AuroraOS appearing as an example in so many totally different sections?[edit]

It seems misleading to categorise distributions into different sections then specifically choose to provide, as an example, a relatively obscure/niche distribution that doesn't fit cleanly into any one section. It almost seems like it has been done by someone wishing to promote that distribution rather than to give a good example. (talk) 11:42, 15 April 2012 (UTC)

Aurora Linux isn't even active anymore... This article needs a complete revision. The same (outdated) information is repeated over and over again, there are way too many examples, too much details, much original research, insufficient sources, redundant information (distributions are already explained in their respective articles), etc. --SelfishSeahorse (talk) 20:39, 6 April 2014 (UTC)
Relatedly, the article is also an orgy of internal links. Some of the internal links provided are unbeneficial within the context of the article, while others are needlessly duplicated throughout the article. -G.Ceara — Preceding unsigned comment added 15:14, 26 May 2014 (UTC)

Why there are only examples of software distributions?[edit]

Why is this article so focused in software distributions, without any section talking about software itself? Also there is no mention of rolling release web applications, and the majority of them are developed in a rolling release model. For the last case, think of wikipedia itself, whose site is updated regularly without any pre-defined deployment circle. (talk) 07:10, 8 August 2015 (UTC)