Re: Announce: Linux-next (Or Andrew's dream :-))

From: Linus Torvalds
Date: Tue Feb 12 2008 - 13:27:37 EST

On Tue, 12 Feb 2008, Greg KH wrote:
> I may be a bit defensive here, but I hope that all of the recent
> kobject/kset/driver core changes have been done with the thought of
> "what are we doing wrong".

.. but are we expecting it to be finished?

That's the point.

This whole "Linux-next" discussion so far has almost been predicated on
the whole assumption that this is an on-going concern. And it really
should NOT be.

If it's an on-going concern, we need to tackle *that* issue, not the issue
that cross-subsystem merges are hard. They simply seem to happen too much.

In other words, I'm not AT ALL interested in the merges we've already
done. That's over and done with, and we'll never ever do those merges
again. Who cares? I don't.

I'm purely and _only_ interested in the merges of the future. You don't
need to be defensive about the things that led up to this discussion, I'm
more hoping that we can aim at fixing the problem at the source, rather
than trying to work around it.

We simply shouldn't have all that many conflicts. We've had *way* too many
of them lately, and I think it's because people have felt it wasn't too

Put another way: back when we worked with just patches, we avoided renames
like hell, and we also tried to simply even re-architect the whole tree so
that you didn't have so many patch conflicts. One main reason as far as I
was concerned for things like per-directory Kconfig files and the whole
initcall() stuff was the fact that the old single Kconfig file and the old
crazy init/main.c file were total *nightmares* when it came to conflict

So we split things up more, and we didn't do renames (or were very careful
about it). We avoided the things that caused pain.

I think we need to remember that: yes, we'll always have to have ways to
fix the pain that does happen, but even more importantly, we should strive
for models where it doesn't happen in the first place!

And simply avoiding cross-subsystem API changes unless there is a major
*MAJOR* reason for them is the obvious thing to do. Simply face the fact
that even in open source there are major reasons to stay with an old
interface even if it's not optimal.

We absolutely MUST NOT have the mindset that "cross-subsystem conflicts
happen all the time".

That was my point.

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