Welcome, this page is dedicated to the Linux Community's greatest ambassadors, Gentoo users. Like the annoying teenager next door with a 90hp import sporting a 6 foot tall bolt-on wing, Gentoo users are proof that society is best served by roving gangs of armed vigilantes, dishing out swift, cold justice with baseball bats to those fucking ricer bastards.
Please note, these quotes are real. I didn't bother to link to the original quotes because it's too much work and this page is mostly an amalgamation of different things that I've found on the web. Besides, we all know people like this, if you spent 6 hours compiling X, you'd like to think it was for something useful right? You can't make this shit up, we're not kidding. People like this are real. While some pages attempt a more practical look at a Gentoo user's behavior, we're not so lenient. Most of these quotes come from the Gentoo forums themselves or from slashdot.
"There are so many steps involved in tweaking the last uumph out of your linux system- and it really is a work of art to pull it off- I have used many different kernels and all sorts of optimization combinations-yesterday I finally used -noatime and -notail for my reiserfs file system: The single biggest performance boost I have yet to see-now I can have gnome2.2 running using gnome-terminal to compile the latest j2sdk from source (nice -n 19)while browsing with mozilla while running e17 in a seperate login with two eterms and run Unreal Tournament at full speed (this with an apache webserver running for my dyndns pseudo-domain and a mysql for my answering-machine software for my isdn card-which keeps track of all incomming phonecalls and manages my telephone book app and ntfsd/sshd/dhcp server/squid)..."
"I love building all sources from scratch, then it will be optimized and made to run smooth for MY machine. as Debian normally uses binary packages, yeah dependencies crap may happen, that's odd, you might as well just switch to pure source base distro, right."
"I notice that my disk does a whole lot of thrashing when I boot up. I have a lot of stuff that gets loaded into memory every time I boot, like X11, ion2, Firefox, Eterm, Thunderbird, etc. It seems to me that putting all of the files necessary to those apps in a contiguous section on the disk and loading that into memory in one shot would be a whole lot faster. Is there a way to do this? Is it stupid?"
"If Debian people think compiling sucks, well so what? I guess they're satisfied with Someone Else's Binaries. I prefer to play on Gentoo's strengths. I get exactly what I want compiled in -- nothing less, nothing more, and with the optimizations I want."
"As a Gentoo user what really stands out to me is that this test was clearly biased away from Linux. If the reviewers had been serious they would have used an optimised distributions such as Gentoo, which would have taken far fuller advantage of the extra 32bits in each register to provide a much fuller experience, more than any current Linux distribution possibly could. It really saddens me to see that people go out of their way to spend so much money on such expensive hardware and then squander their investment by running barely suitable software on it. To me, an extra 0.1% performance increase, even if I am only imagining it to be faster, is certainly worth one day a week recompiling all of the latest packages from source code. Even if I do occasionally get my CFLAGS in a muddle! I think I speak for Slashdot when I say that Gentoo is the only sane option for getting the most from your hardware!"
"And what about Gentoo? I think that this is the best distribution to run on a 64-bit processor. Perhaps the test needs to be reworded to "without any manual recompiling" and then redone. Compiling all your software yourself, optimized for your processor, gives you a great speed boost. I think this is one major advantage where Linux excels in comparison to Windows."
"I know how much everyone here loves optimized software. This is why I was surprised to read today on the GNOME mailing list that Ubuntu is taking advantage of some optimization opportunities that I think Gentoo is missing out on."
"People, I am the only one who realise that binary packages are almost useless? Except a few basic packages (as in USE independent, e.g. gcc), the result depends greatly by the USE variable. Let's take for example the mod_php package. How useful a binary mod_php will be?"
"USE variables. These things are so cool. I don't have a printer at home, so I USE -cups. Boom, nothing wastes space on my computer or pulls in stupid dependencies by compiling in optional printer support. I don't think this would be even close to feasable on a binary distro. Everybody (espescially that Debian mailing list thread) seems to get stuck on CFLAGS, but USE is the real winner. "
"At this point I realized exactly how nice Gentoo is-the USE flags makes things sooooo much easier. In all I needed over 8 hours to get my SuSE distro up and running multimedia-and this with the help of a webage dedicated to to getting mutlimedia stuff up and wunning with SuSE- If I had had to download the source of each of these files and manually do every step involved this would have taken me at least twice as long, i.e more time that was involved in the installation and compilation of Gentoo."
"I buy cars with turbos, I take out the old turbo, insert a new bigger fatter
one, I make sure my chip is up to date and I charge that turbo with higher
pressure then recommended. I get the fattest rims and accessories I can affoard.I
want cutting edge and I hope gentoo keeps balancing stability with cutting
edge. See I like the freedom that gentoo will provide me with. Instead of saying
"my way or download it yourself", they say "my way or just simply unmask it
or make your own ebuild etc".
Hyped? Yeah, just like some people still are calling the internet a hype. Good things are supposed to be hyped, the problem is when complete crap get's hyped, and I'm sure we can all say that gentoo is one of lifes good things. To me gentoo represents freedom, I'm free to choose if I want a stable system or if I want to optimize things. The day there is something that gives me more freedom and that is better in every way then gentoo I will use that. But since the community seems scatterd with very bright people I doubt that it will happen anytime soon.
See, I can work on my car for weeks to get a little more torque, so by choise sacrificing (keeping GRP in mind) some time to compile my system just the way I want it, to me is a treat. My image reflects who I am, and I feel that gentoo's best advantages is not a single system, such as portage, but the actual mentality behind all the development. In that aspect gentoos image reflect who it is, and how it is going to develop in the future.
The gentoo-mentality is what is behind the creation of such a great community, portage, use-flags and all the nifty new things that will come to us, the greatfull users. The main reason to why I'm using gentoo is because I indentify with the gentoo mentality, I feel secure in that with a good culture behind the scenes, it will spread and be visible to anyone using the product (or process as someone prefered to call it)."
"Sure, the extra 2% you gain from optimizing for your CPU is nice, but that's not main the reason to use Gentoo. It's about control. I have two words for the anti-Gentoo critics: "use variables". That's the power of Gentoo, being able to choose whether or not you want to install all of KDE just to get arts, or whether you want to enable gnome support in Abiword. No RPM-based distro can do that."
"That was the first decent review I've seen of Gentoo. One thing that was not emphasized specifically was USE flags. This is one of the main advantages of Gentoo. You get the binary you want because you compile the options in that you want, all through one easily configurable /etc/make.conf file."
"As has been pointed out to the author of the relevant "advisory" several times, Mozilla has neither a "local zone" nor "predictable cache file locations". The author assumed that the random string generated for his cache file location was the same as everyone else's. I wonder how Gentoo can have fixed, QAed and tested the fix for a vulnerability which doesn't exist?"
"I am a long time Gentoo user, so take what I say with a grain of salt, but I believe that as hardware gets faster, it makes sense to migrate to a largely source-based Linux system. Binary packages encourage inconsistency and incompatibility, whearas source encourages unified development frameworks and integration." [I just want to say, that is the best quote I've ever heard, wonderful stuff. -ed.]
"Especially if you're a newbie to linux (I wasn't, but I like you, was certainly no master). Following the installation guide that gentoo provides was a very educational experience for me. Not only does it tell you step by step what to do to get your system up and running, it tells you WHY you're doing it. I was very impressed with the instructions."
"I myself used to use Mandrake on several servers, without really understanding Linux. I made it work. I got by. Only with Gentoo was I able to make the leap to the desktop, and the laptop. And not only make the leap, but understand the system from top to bottom. If I had to, I could now invent my own LFS system, built entirely from source. Only on Gentoo can you find a learning curve that, however gradually, reaches such heights."
"The USE flags and all gentoo ideas are really great, but the real problems of gentoo when it comes to enterprises is a lot of software big players won't support gentoo as os... Think about having an Oracle database or DB2 or a SAP R3 system on gentoo, even on stable gentoo... Gentoo is more educational than mainstream distros. It encourages you to look under the hood and effectively turns a lot of n00bs into l33ts."
"About 30 computers. I'll be having a few other people help me, maybe 3 or 4 others. We'll be doing manual installs as far as I know at this point in time, but I still have some time to think it through."
"Hilarious. I did notice your last statement about no serious business considering Gentoo was not funny because it is not true. I do happen to know 2 high level network administrators who are very seriously considering Gentoo for their server farms. They had invested much time and effort building these systems and now Red Hat is dropping support and forcing an upgrade. They decided they would like to avoid a forced upgrade in the future . Since their time is valuable they are very seriously considering Gentoo and are evaluting it as we speak."
"When you're installing Gentoo you are *forced* to learn, and you can learn much more quickly than with RedHat or SuSE, where you're not forced to learn the low-level details of the system. It helps if you have a friend who can answer your questions."
"I think 10 minutes server downtime once a couple of months (or even less frequently) due to compiling updates, is not much of an issue. Other packages can compile while the server is up and running, it reduces performance, but not for too long as to call it important. At least this has been my experience."
I think the biggest benefit of running Gentoo is that it's a learning experience. I'm pretty good with computers, and managed to install Mandrake with no problems - but I didn't really know how it did anything. I did look into Linux from Scratch, but decided that was a bit much - Gentoo is a very happy mid point.
"gentoo also approaches the 'moving to linux from windows or mac' ideal in a very different way from something more like RH or MDK. I used both before gentoo simply because i'd heard of them and not gentoo at the time. I could install them, assuming it automatically detected all my devices. And i could usually follow their GUI configuration programs. But the second i hit a wall or there was a bug in the GUI, i was completely stuck. i realized i knew just about nothing about linux. gentoo on the other hand teaches you many important tools and a lot about the interal workings of linux. the documentation is far superiour to anything RH or MDK or slackware or windows ever offered me (i've no experience with macOS). now, when i have a problem, i know what to do, and how to correct it (i must admit, i've had far fewer problems because i knew what i was doing and the install was for my machine, not 100,000 generic people's computers). only gentoo could have offered me that."
"Daniel went on to say that using Gentoo on the customer servers is a mixed experience; while it's easy to use and maintain, and the customers who prefer Gentoo are generally more knowledgable, it does take a long time to install."
"Gentoo is not a hacker's toy; it is a professional's tool. Let's hear from some people who use Gentoo in production environments -- we already know it makes a good custom desktop. What else do you use Gentoo for?"
"The Gentoo install system taught me more about *NIX in the course of a few days than three years of other distros did. I fell in love instantly. It didn't hurt that I could FINALLY build binaries tuned for my CPU, while other distros were much more 'generic'."
"I'm currently isntalling Gentoo from stage 1 on 300Mhz laptop with 128 megs of RAM. And the compilation is not an issue. That guy sounds like he plans to do all the compiling during the time he would normally be using the computer. Why not do like I did? I started the bootstrap when I was on my way to bed. In the morning, it was finished. Before I went to work, I emerged system. When I got back home, it was done. X and Fluxbox were both installed during the night, no problems there. I didn't lose any time compiling all that software."
"as it turns out, on my computer it took 13 hours to get kdebase. if you have a long list of use flags (including the ones in make.conf.defaults) you can get a long compile. likewise some CFLAGS will speed up compile time and others elongate it. unless the program is only used sparcely, like genkernel, i'd reccomend staying with at least -O2 for optimizations."
"A full install (stage1) with Gnome can be done in a day on an athlon-xp, provided you start in the morning and really know what you're doing (ie know exactly what you want in each of the configs, and exactly which packages to merge)."
"I'm stuck with a 400MHz PII on a dial-up connection; it's just too slow. I first tried starting from stage 1, but when I found the bootstrap was still compiling after ten hours, I decided to try a stage-3 install instead. (I was just evaluating it; it wasn't going to be a permanent installation, so who cares if it was optimized?) But even then it took over three hours for the kernel sources to download, and my ISP cuts you off after an unpredictable interval, so the download failed around 94% complete."
"In fact, I can't even imagine how the developers manage to compile a list of so many packages that go together in the first place, I know I could never manage to do that. And it seems that either they don't use the same packages as us gentoo folks or they are rather sloppy about satisfying dependencies. Even after a bit of digging with yum/apt repositories I still couldn't get mplayer for the life of me. It would be easier to compile by hand but then what is the point of package management?"
"I just switched too Gentoo because I was sick of Red Hat doing stuff to my config without me knowing and hogging my memory. I was looking for something new. I tried Debian once, months ago, when I didn't know much of linux, maybe that's why it didn't work, but I don't care. I couldn't even get a stupid X-server installed. Yet I still was looking for a system which would let me decide myself what I should install and preferably had something more up-to-date as i386 binaries, so I found Gentoo, and I'm sticking on it. I'm thinking of installing all the servers for a lanparty with it, but I'll have to discuss that with others."
"For me Gentoo is perfect. For you, perhaps not. What is really strage about Gentoo is this: people who like it or dislike it keep constantly refering to Gentoo-when in reality we are refering to Linux. With othert distro's when you have problems they are problems with Redhat or with SuSE or with Lindows. But if you have problems with Gentoo you have problems with Linux. That's because with Gentoo you have returned to the source."
"Source based distro historically always = more packages because there is too much competition between binary distros. There is simply no standard Linux binary package. As a result, source based distros like Gentoo update their repos sooner because it doesn't require as much work. Source is source."
"Again, I cannot stress enough how much easier gentoo is to me than redhat or mandrake when i tried those, I never figured out what was broken when something did not work, or what was installed and what not."
"Debian, however, had some obvious and immediate flaws. Binary based packages drove me crazy. First, I needed a mutt with ssl support compiled in. Then, I found myself wanting mplayer. Next, I wanted a mozilla without mail and news compiled in. (I can't stand it when I accidentally click on a 'mailto' link!) The only solution seemed to be to compile it yourself, make debs, and install it using dpkg. "
I know that most of you would rather run Windows than Redhat. This is my opinion again, but personally Redhat runs like crap even on newer systems. Stock package management and static binaries may save time, but in the long run they lower your peak perormance and also make the system unstable, and as useless as a used condom. Even recompiling the kernel on Redhat causes problmes. Their modern init scripts interfere with some newer kernel operations. It takes as much time to get Redhat working right as Gentoo. It is time to take out the trash, and we need to stop supporting pay basis distros such as communist Redhat. They are charging us for the stuff thats spose to be free."
"I tried Red Hat, Suse, and Mandrake on the desktop. If something didn't work, I had nowhere to turn to understand and fix the problem. Not so with Gentoo. Why do you think it is that so many users of other distros are coming here to get their questions answered? This is not a raw coincidence. It is because so many people here have the answers, and a good percentage of them have the answers because they have learned from the experience of working hands-on with source-code, patches, kernel config, drive-layout, and the numerous text-files in /etc."
"Quite simply: yes. Yes Debian, you are losing people to Gentoo. But... Why is this happening? Because you are old, and your stable tree is older than me. We have Portage, we have a source compilation unstable version. We are the cutting edge, and Debian has to realize this. There is a hierarchery of distributions, and right now Gentoo is at the top. There will always be Slackware, because it's always been there. Debian will remain in second place to the leading distro, and they'll always be wondering: "Why? Why are we losing users to (insert distro name here)?" Because you don't innovate. Sure, you're good. But theres usually something better. Live with it."
"You have these guys that will say "ohh, just add xyz to apt configuration files and then type this and then type that and then go here and run this and that. Easy" - but it's not easy and it's not intuitive. I love how Gentoo is so easy to maintain."
"Speed isn't even the point! Sure, the extra 2% you gain from optimizing for your CPU is nice, but that's not main the reason to use Gentoo. It's about control. I have two words for the anti-Gentoo critics: "use variables". That's the power of Gentoo, being able to choose whether or not you want to install all of KDE just to get arts, or whether you want to enable gnome support in Abiword. No RPM-based distro can do that."
"I don't think that Debian can really compete with Gentoo. Sure it might be okay, but when it comes to dependencies, you probably are still going to have to get them all on your own. Or is there something like portage in the Debian world as well?"
Looks like we've gotten some attention on the Gentoo Forums recently. Good to see people can take a joke and poke fun. If you're offended, I have a friend who uses Gentoo, and well ... let's just say it's difficult to drink beer with someone who insists on building his drink "from scratch" and with "optimized hops", not to mention, the hot waitress doesn't appreciate his need to know her on a "low-level, stripped down without the bloat" kind of way.
Of course, this thread has it's own wonderful commentary as well, and we can't just let this slide:
"Binary packaging does encourage sloppy coding/design, contrast with the stochastic API unit testing which occurs naturally with all the building with different configurations."