All is not well in LFS land

Greg Schafer gschafer at
Wed Jan 28 02:17:11 PST 2004

For those not monitoring lfs-support, here is a tasty little morsel from
Ronald Hummelink where he shows his true colors. See below.

Quite simply, I've had it, stopped enjoying it, and am not going to donate
my services to a project that breeds this sort of behaviour. Either Ronald
Hummelink posts a public apology to me OR Gerard bans him from the project
OR I quit. The first two are never going to happen therefore it must be the

Sure, I have my faults. I have a thin skin and a low tolerance for fools and
incompetence, but even blind Freddy can see that my contributions to this
project FAR outweigh any negatives. But not so, it seems, that mental giant
Ronald Hummelink. He still had to jump on a simple mistake of mine (even
tho' I'd already corrected myself down thread) to make out what a big man he
is and score points. In my view, his actions show the true character of the
person. Then he resorted to profane name calling, another measure of his
true character. Nice one Ronald Hummelink.

Just to give you some background, some time ago, both Ronald Hummelink and
Jeremy Utley were caught in the act when talking negatively and in a
slanderous fashion about senior members of the LFS community in a public IRC
forum. I might come across as arrogant sometimes, but the arrogance
displayed by those two on that occasion was simply breathtaking. When the
words got back to me, instead of starting a public flame fest, I did the
right thing and mailed them privately to express my dis-satisfaction. A fat
lot of good that did! From what I hear, it would appear to be a chronic
problem in the IRC channel. If I were in charge of LFS it would be shut

To make matters worse, our fearless leader decided not to take any firm
action when he became aware of the breaches. Gerard is a nice guy, but his
skills as a project leader are less than satisfactory, in particular, his
character judgement is woeful. Instead of choosing the right people for
jobs, he gives wrong people the wrong jobs and in some cases he even gives
them the root password! I've lobbied Gerard for months to make the LFS IRC
logs public in an effort to make the project members more accountable. But
nothing. To give another example, Gerard appointed Jeremy Utley and James
Robertson as Bugzilla admins. The next thing you know, they've both wangled
their way into the editorial team! To be honest, this was the spark for me
to apply for editorial commit priv's. No way was I going to watch those two
(obviously unsuited to the role) mess up the book. We're still fixing up
their mess to this day. Oh, that reminds me, James Robertson recently had
the audacity to accuse me of bad form. Wangling your way into the editorial
team then sitting back and doing nothing for months on end is what I'd call
bad form! How he can look anyone in the eye and call himself an LFS editor
I'll never know.

In closing, while ever this project attracts the calibre of person the likes
of Ronald Hummelink, Jeremy Utley, Ian Molton and James Iwanek then it will
always be mediocre and I want no part of it.

I believe I've made a positive difference to LFS over the years and helped
to raise the bar. I'm quite certain I leave the LFS book in much better
shape than when I started. LFS has taught me plenty, I've given plenty back.
But my work here is done and it's time to move on.

FWIW, here is my parting advice for the project:

 - the toolchain is at the very core of LFS. NEVER lose sight of this.

 - do NOT let the organizational stuff turn LFS into a corporation-like and
   un-opensource-like environment. There are already signs of this with Bill
   sending pointy-haired-boss-like mails harassing folks to do stuff. Bill
   is a nice guy but someone needs to urgently send him on a course to learn
   clear and concise written communication skills.

 - never let Jeremy Utley near the LFS XML sources again, EVER!

 - keep a close eye on Alex. Obviously has talent but some of his wild ideas
   and penchant for stretching the rules must be curbed.

 - choose appointees to the editorial team VERY carefully and wisely i.e. do
   NOT choose folks who have gained knowledge thru' LFS then developed a
   severe attitude because of it.

 - try to attract quality personnel to the project or forever be doomed to
   mediocrity and considered a novelty in the Linux world.

 - Gerard's leadership must improve. It needs to be strong and decisive and
   he must be prepared to make tough decisions.

 - immediately BAN folks from the project (lists, IRC, whatever possible)
   who display Ronald Hummelink-like and Ian Molton-like unacceptable

So that's it, I'm outta here. You know who to thank for that! I've unsubbed
from all LFS lists and have no intention of ever reading one again. Flame
away if you want coz I won't be reading. Any flames sent to me personally
will be forwarded back to this list. It's time for me to find a distro to
work on. Maybe even explore a bsd.

Thanks to anyone who ever supported me.
Sorry to go out with a bang.

PS - My final contribution to LFS will be to upload a cleaned up version of
my gsbuild system. The ICA stuff is there for all to see and for LFS to use
in the future. Don't underestimate the usefulness of this measure of build
reproducibility. I need to do a bit more testing then I'll make a new (and
final) drop. But sadly, Alex's latest commit has completely broken lfscmd.
Too bad, I couldn't give a stuff any more.

----- Forwarded message from Ronald Hummelink <maillist at> -----

From: Ronald Hummelink <maillist at>
To: LFS Support List <lfs-support at>
X-Mailer: Ximian Evolution 1.4.5 
Date: Tue, 27 Jan 2004 00:16:49 +0100
Subject: Re: Boot problem

If you don't like flames don't read on.

On Mon, 2004-01-26 at 22:58, Greg Schafer wrote:
> On Mon, Jan 26, 2004 at 02:16:50PM +0100, Ronald Hummelink wrote:
> > Greg calm down!
> Don't anyone tell me what to do! Ever! Got it? When someone tells me I'm
> wrong when I'm not then I will react.

> I was right on the point that I was making, but was wrong on the original
> point. I'd already said this down thread. But no, you still had to take a
> cheap pot shot you pathetic little person.
> Now you look like a fool! Again!

You nasty little bastard prickasshole... You are wrong and if your wrong
accept it... You are good at accusing people for nothing aren't you.

Remember the "little" incident where you accuse a whole group of people
in an irc people as whatnot because they fell over your LOUSY attitude
when dealing with people.
Remember to this day you have refused to ANSWER my REQUEST to explain
yourself, but nooo, you have an absolute feeling of superiority. You
cannot possibly be wrong, you do not even care to back up accusations,
even after requests from You know Who i mean.

Greg, you are an asshole, a smart one who knows a lot, but still an
asshole with a very crappy attitude.

> I was man enough to admit my mistake. You?

> PS  -  If I knew I'd become an open target when taking on this LFS job I
> never would have done it. The "out-to get-you" mentality of some folks
> around here is appalling.

You call that over yourself, you have been told this before... it is you
letting it show trough you feel that you know more then the rest..

Have fun.

Ronald who is flameproof. 

Linux is like a small snowball rolling downhill. Microsoft is just
waiting down the mountain...

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----- End forwarded message -----

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