Saturday, July 11, 2009

Seven complaints about Linux and why Windows users make them

I, like most Linux advocates, have demonstrated the power of Linux to people who had no idea such power existed in technology, much less in free technology.

I have a friend who was at my house one day while I was at work. For some reason, he needed me to reboot my computer. So I did, via SSH. When I'm at work, I stream music off of my desktop at home for my listening pleasure via the web. Sometimes if I need to do something from my desktop when I'm working, I'll X-forward an application to my work computer and do it that way.

People see all of these things, not to mention the various desktop effects that Compiz provides, and marvel at how awesome and powerful it is. They ask what it is. When I help them set it up, they get frustrated and quit. These are the problems faced by many a Linux demonstrator. The complaints that I hear are consistent. Always.

But I'm not here to complain. I'm here to solve problems. So I will offer a solution to each complaint that I've heard a dozen times as I go.

The first complaint:

"I put a DVD in my player and it won't play."

This problem, like most of them on this list, is the result of user ignorance brought on by some external force or another. This particular problem comes about when terms like DVD and MP3 become marketing buzzwords. Their definitions are reduced to the most distilled, basic descriptions of what they should be because products sell better that way. Here's how these words look in a Best Buy salesman's dictionary:

DVD - n. A movie.

MP3 - n. Music.

But they're both so much more than that. They're patented formats, which makes all the difference. Any time you purchase a DVD or a DVD player or a DVD-ROM drive, anytime you buy any device that plays MP3 files, part of your money spent is paying the owners of the DVD and MP3 license. Some company turns a profit every time you buy a DVD or MP3 player whether or not they manufactured or even designed the device. When you pay a license to Microsoft to purchase Windows Media Center Edition which comes out of the box ready to play DVDs, you're buying the right to watch DVDs on that device.

Most Linuxes are free of cost, but more to the point, they're about freedom of usage. How free are you to play a DVD anywhere? In other words, why should you have to buy the right to watch DVDs that you have either bought from a store, rented, or made yourself? That's not freedom. Which is why most Linuxes won't give you the ability to decode DVDs upon immediate install.

But people shouldn't be discouraged by this. The guys over at VideoLAN have begun distributing a library of code called libdvdcss that decrypts DVDs just fine. And your music, those MP3s and AACs and WMAs and WAVs and whatever else you may have can be listened to by installing the appropriate libraries from the amazing folks developing gstreamer. Installation of these packages is simple enough, either by direct download from those websites or by using whatever repositories your distribution makes available to you.

The second complaint:

"Some piece of my hardware doesn't work."

This is a more legitimate complaint than the first, but I still must object to the reason why the complaint is valid. Microsoft has a long history of making contracts with hardware developers that say that they cannot write drivers for non-Windows operating systems or even disclose the methodologies of the hardware to non-Microsoft developers in exchange for promotion deals. This effectively prevents drivers for Linux from being made.

Unless, that is, a truly dedicated Linux dev decides to reverse engineer the driver from the activities and data transmissions of the hardware. This is difficult to do, and time consuming. These devs are a benefit to us all.

Even with this understanding that the disposition of Linux hardware drivers is dismal, I still can't validate fully giving up on such a problem. Rarely is a piece of hardware rendered completely unusable due to a driver issue. Forums exist for the sole purpose of spreading functional hardware drivers for Linux.

The main complaint used to be that wireless cards never worked. Back in the day, you might have had to use the Windows driver for the card in Linux via a utility like NDISWrapper or MadWifi. Those days are gone. Ubuntu now has built-in drivers for Intel, Atheros, and Broadcom wireless chipsets. These are automatically detected and installed in roughly three clicks of the mouse. Linux is no longer in the disparity it used to be in, but I don't know that I'd call it disparity anyway. Let's not forget that Linux initially grew and spread when people passed around the OS in its sapling form, writing drivers to match their hardware, creating in the process a massive driver base.

The third complaint:

"Installing software is too hard"

This is an almost unforgivable combination of a terminology confusion combined with the false belief that Linux is just like Windows, but better.

A Windows user wants to install a program by putting a disk in their computer and waiting for an installer to pop up onscreen. Then they want to go through seven wizard pages, ignoring all settings, just clicking "Next" a bunch of times. Then they want to wait while it installs, then have to dig through thirty unorganized program listings to find the software, then dodge some links to various readme text files and Internet links to corporate sponsorship websites to finally launch their program. And they want to do this for every single program they install. It's simply too much of a hassle to learn that Linux does things differently.

In Linux, you run a program that was installed when you first put the OS on the system. You search there for the software you want. You check a box suggesting that you want this installed. You do this for all programs that you want installed. Then you click an Okay button and wait while all software is automatically downloaded, all dependencies taken into account, then installed and configured to a predetermined best practice set of settings. Then they get organized by type - Internet, Games, etc. - so you don't have to pick through so much, and then they're alphabetized. The process is simpler, faster, and more organized. It's not harder. It's just not what they're used to. Uninstallation is just as easy.

The fourth complaint:

"Linux is not good for gaming."

Again, we see a confusion of terminology. Linux is actually great for gaming, especially since you don't have so many of your resources tied up in the OS alone. (Side note: generally, I speak of Windows XP here since that's still the version that's most common in the world, but it gets worse with Vista and Windows 7.)

The problem is that Linux isn't popular enough in the world for commercial game companies to bother porting all their games over. It's not financially viable. This, I will admit, is a viable reason to keep a Windows installation around. I myself dual-boot between WinXP and the most recent release of Ubuntu.

That field is changing, however. id Software is porting more and more games to Linux. Some older games are being ported in, which proves that it's doable at the same time that it lays out a process for doing so, a streamline to take care of future ports.

This is not to say that some great games do not already exist for Linux. Take a look at Savage 2 or Sauerbraten or Nexuiz. The graphics are phenomenal, the gameplay is great. The only thing these games lack is a storyline, but the tremendous success of the Unreal Tournament series, Team Fortress, and the Quake Tournament games prove that a storyline is not an absolute requirement of a good game. If you're looking for something with a plot, you can check out the Penumbra series of games.

Linux is great for gaming, some might argue that it's actually better for gaming than Windows, but the games are less available. Just clearing that up.

The fifth complaint:

"I have this program that runs fine in Windows, but it doesn't run at all in Linux."

The people making this claim apparently never looked at the system requirements for the software, and therefore never saw the part where it required Windows. This problem is to be expected. Linux has an entirely different software architecture beneath it because, well, it's a different operating system.

Giving up at this point is a display of short patience and also ignorance to the thought that there might be equivalent software out there for Linux. Need a word processor? Try AbiWord. Need a full productivity suite? Try OpenOffice.org. Need a Visio-style diagramming program? Try Dia.

Do none of those match your specifications? Install WINE and try to install your Windows software that way. The fact that Linux can execute a large chunk of Windows code is more than Windows can stake a claim to.

If all else fails and that software is an absolute necessity, then, yes, there's always Windows. Feel free to use it.

The sixth complaint:

"I asked how to do something, and they told me to type commands. That's not intuitive!"

Chances are this user was told to do it on the terminal because it was

  1. The easiest way to describe the solution in a message board or chat room or
  2. The fastest way to get the job done.

Probably, there's a way to do it through the GUI, but they asked how to do something that's been bugging them, so they were shown the fastest method, if perhaps not the method that they would have liked.

Besides, the terminal's not the scariest thing in the world. Running an apt-get command isn't the same as compiling software from source. Being told to use the terminal once, and being told exactly what to type, is not the most complicated thing one can accomplish on a Linux system, and it's not a constant requirement. Most full-time, die-hard Linuxers will use the CLI very regularly. I know I do. That's because we know it's the fastest way to get things done and we've taken the time to learn it. That's not really expected of a first-time user, especially one who isn't technologically inclined. Next time, the user should specifically ask how to do the task using the mouse instead of the keyboard.

The seventh complaint:

"Linux is not ready for the desktop."

This isn't so much a complaint as it is the sum total culmination of all of the others. People fear new and different things. Human beings don't always react well to change. The natural reaction is to call that change inferior, even against obvious examples of it not being so.

There are several million Linux users worldwide who would disagree with this statement fundamentally, and are proving its wrongness on a day-to-day basis. Millions of people use some form of Linux as their primary desktop OS. In fact, there are millions of people who use Linux every day and don't even realize it. The system is so versatile that it can be tweaked to perform on everything from iPods to Tivos to cell phones. It is backed and assisted by many multi-million dollar corporations like IBM and Google. Believe it or not, Microsoft runs a lot of their web servers with Linux, which goes a long way toward showing their faith in their own product.

But if people give it a try, adjust to changes for the better, and most of all contribute some way to the community that keeps advancing Linux and its derivative software far beyond the scope of Microsoft Windows, it just might work out for them. It already has for millions of users.

241 comments:

  1. ^and you are a troll^

    Anyway nice artical.
    I faced nearly all the problems that you mentioned in the artical. But it was possible to overcome all of them with the support of the online community.
    But i never thought the software installation was hard to do(at least after i got a dsl connection)

    Linux is gaining momentum. The more the ordinery people(non geeks) start using linux the faster it will start to grow.

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  2. And articles like this are why Linux will never come to the forefront in the desktop world unless a private entity (ie. Canonical, RedHat, Novell) can put some muscle behind it. You actually have the gall to blame indivduals for their own perception of Linux. Like it or not, most things in the Windows world "just work". They might not work the best way possible, and there may be dozens of reason why the reasons they work are philosphically wrong, but they do work.

    The DVD/MP3 issue is clearly always going to be the best example of this. You might hate DVD/CSS. You might hate MP3. However, reality is they are the de facto standards for video and audio distribution in most parts of the world. So, if Linux is to get wide adoption should it wage a "holy war" against those evil formats or should it allow users to use them and maybe gently nudge and inform them about some of the evils?

    If Linux pepole focused less on blaming users for not understanding Linux and, instead, focused that energy on making Linux more user-friendly we might get somewhere.

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  3. quote:Microsoft runs a lot of their web servers with Linux

    I'm sorry, but that is simply untrue, to begin with Microsoft can't run their webserver on Linux, IIS only runs on Windows.

    Complaint 1 is trivial, and also trivially easy to remedy, in fact, if the Linux person has done their job properly, will never be uttered.

    Simply configure the Media repositories for the distribution in question. Ubuntu go to Medibuntu and follow the instructions, Mandriva go to easyurpmi and follow the instructions. Then install the media CODECs and Libdvdcss

    Second complaint. Pick you battles, do your homework make sure the hardware is supported or, that you can make it work with community help.

    3 Explain and demonstrate prior to the install. spend a little less time on the Gee Whizz bling, and a little more on education

    4 Once again education.

    5 Education

    6 Education again, explain the CLI, compare it to Windows CLI, show why Linux CLI is a powerful and useful tool. Explain that copy and paste works well.

    7 If you've covered your arse in the previous 6, this one won't get trottered out.

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  4. @Anonymous#1 - I'm not a tool. I'm a utilitarian. Until you can tell the difference, I suggest you not troll on my blog.

    @Anonymous#2 - Thanks for backing me up. If I knew who you were, I'd have your back in a knife fight.

    @JeffH0821 - I'm not blaming "individuals for their own perception of Linux." Did you not read the article? I'm accusing external forces like the mainstream media for ignoring the truth of proprietary formats and instead just selling things like DVD and MP3 to the world as if they were a brand name, which, of course, is what they've been reduced to. Linux has a philosophy behind it of freedom, and I was merely explaining that formats like DVD and MP3 are not in line with that philosophy. Microsoft has a philosophy, too, but it mostly involves the digital and financial equivalent of "rape and pillage." Not my gig, pal.

    @tracyanne - Microsoft used to have some servers running Linux. This article shows how they later outsourced their web hosting to a service that runs Linux: http://news.netcraft.com/archives/2003/08/17/wwwmicrosoftcom_runs_linux_up_to_a_point_.html

    Aside from that, you point out something important, tracyanne. "...if the Linux person has done their job properly, will never be uttered [sic]." And JeffH0821 confirms it: "Like it or not, most things in the windows world 'just work'."

    Jeff, Windows "just works" because hardware manufacturers play nice with Microsoft and because PC manufacturers set it up properly before the customer ever gets it. If you gave a total n00b a copy of Windows XP and a copy of, say, Ubuntu, the n00b would find Ubuntu easier to install, faster to install, and more complete "out of the box," so to speak. So what you're telling me is that if Linux were properly configured BEFORE a user ever had any contact with it, and if the hardware manufacturer made sure that there were no problems, then Linux would function on the same level of "just working" that Windows currently does? Thanks for proving my point, guys.

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  5. If a distro contained codecs (eg Sabayon, Mint) and had Wine installed at the beginning, with a user menu that stated "This is how you install software", with no command line, and manufacturers made drivers and things for Linux, and software was available, that distro could be said to be friendly. Also have one repository, not multiple ones.

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  6. @tuxt0r - Then what do I do when I want to install software outside of that one single repo? Your idea might fit some segment, but the beautiful thing about Linux is that there's a version for everybody. And I think the last thing we need is another apt/yum/rpm/etc. But yes, Sabayon and Mint are both nice distros that solve a lot of these problems straight away. Sabayon's a little heavy for my tastes, and I can't stand the Mint Applications menu, but to each his own. And there are plenty who prefer these distros. Thanks for dropping by.

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  7. As far as ease of use, hardware support, and ease of installation, I see this article as reinforcing stale, outdated myths. We have two PC's in this house with the same motherboard and basically the same configuration. One runs Ubuntu and the other has XP. The XP computer plays EA Games products as reliably as XP does anything, which is it's only advantage. Otherwise, XP clearly loses on hardware suppport (configuring the nvidia onboard graphics was a nightmare, and don't get me started on hard drive SMART errors), the install took 2 hours, and XP still fights tooth and nail on a lot of routine actions. This isn't our only example of comparing the two in this house, but it's the best since the PC's are so comparable.

    I'm sorry, but if you want me to get a person up and going quickly and reliably, keep the Windows garbage. Reliability and ease of use require an OS that is not a toy, which rules Windows out handily.

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  8. Just to back up my previous claim, you'll see here that most of Microsoft's web servers run IIS for sure, but there are some running CentOS and other Linuxes:

    http://searchdns.netcraft.com/?position=limited&host=microsoft.com

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  9. @Anonymous #3 - I'm not sure whether to agree or disagree because I'm not sure what your argument is. You call Windows "garbage" in the same breath that you tell us that's the quickest way to get somebody up and running fast, but just before you complain about the two-hour install time (I assume you're including driver installations in that estimate, but likely not all the patches). That seems contradictory. But then later you say that Windows is a "toy" and you suggest that it's unfit for use.

    I'm confused. Care to come back and clarify?

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  10. Ryan,
    Great job with the article. I agree with each and every point you have made about the "common complaints".
    I would like to add that in many cases, these "common complaints" are brought up as arguments against Linux by paid shrills. Some of these shrills are folks who write for on-line publications, who cast themselves as objective journalists and IT professionals. In many cases these folks have never used Linux or have used it only briefly. --apparently part of some individual or organized dis-information campaign agains Linux.

    I installed Windows XP recently on a slightly dated HP laptop. It took ~4 hours to complete the base OS and OEM drivers disks. The feedback provided during the process was horrendous. Reboot after reboot... I had not even installed MS Office. On top of that, the updates took nearly a week of fussing around and I still am not convinced I could duplicate the system using the same process.
    ...on the other hand I can install Ubuntu with full support for all hardware, install all needed applications, install latest updates, and be up and running with everything I need in ~25 minutes. What a breeze! No activation hassle, no fees, full freedom.

    btw-Why can't I copy/paste in this website blog? You really should contact the admin and get that fixed.

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  11. NVM about the copy/paste. It is working now. Perhaps a script problem after doing lots of edits on my post.

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  12. @zman58 - I know the problem you speak of. Seems Google only lets you copy/paste (not to mention other things like Ctrl+Backspace) until you're logged into Blogger through some means. It's kind of a pain.

    Thanks for the kind words.

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  13. @zman58 - I know the problem you speak of. Seems Google only lets you copy/paste (not to mention other things like Ctrl+Backspace) until you're logged into Blogger through some means. It's kind of a pain.

    Thanks for the kind words.

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  14. And sorry for the double-post. Google apparently didn't like me talking bad about it.

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  15. So, basically it boils down to stupidity? Users of Microsoft Windows are too stupid, in their current state of mind, to run Linux?

    A paper airplane is much easier to fly than a military fighter jet and that's the point.. with more power and features comes a steeper learning curve.

    If you want to do things a different way, you may have to learn something new. This isn't news, it's been happening since the dawn of mankind.

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  16. To every user out there (Linux or non-Linux user): According to distrowatch there are 840 Linux distros out there and growing. I am sure that all you users can find atleast one distro that suits your needs. For the most part Ubuntu suits everyone's needs for Gaming, Codecs ease of use and everything in between. Personally I can't stand Ubuntu. I use Gentoo (at home), Slackware (at work - version 13 will be available in 64bit as well) and Fedora if I need anything cutting edge like the bluetooth stack to work out of the box.

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  17. Education is all well and good, in theory.
    Most people have no attention span to speak of and are pre-convinced that computers are frighteningly complex and that therefore any explanation offered to them is just "blah blah blah techno-babble" and isn't really listened to. Motivation to learn, or the utter lack thereof, being most people's main problem.
    You can see people's eyes glazing over within seconds. They usually interrupt me to say "if I phone you will you come and sort it out?" the answer's always "yes" and they hardly ever call, because it always works properly.

    For an example of how staggeringly dumb some people can be I offer you the following, (this is quite true) - a phone cal from someone I've helped before "I was on hotmail and it kept asking me to change my password and it wouldnt go away so in a fit of annoyance I put a random password in which I didn't write down and now I can't get back into my email account - can you help me?" (this person is a University lecturer!)
    I told her to phone Microsoft - they deserve each other.

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  18. The anonymouses are stacking up in here...

    Re: "So, basically it boils down to stupidity? Users of Microsoft Windows are too stupid, in their current state of mind, to run Linux?"

    If you're accusing me of calling people stupid, then I must object. As a user of Windows myself, I must say that I don't believe I'm stupid at all. What I'm saying is that people have had poor terminology pushed on them. Couple that with the fact that they've also had poorly-coded, underfeatured, and overpriced software pushed on them since the day they first used a computer, and what you end up with is an army of people who simply don't know any better. You are absolutely correct that the learning curve can be steep. Education is key.

    But people don't care about alternatives sometimes because they've never been presented an alternative that has made them question the fact that Windows != PC. When a person is offered an alternative to anything, but they refuse to even acknowledge it, what do you call that person?

    As many people have pointed out, education is key, but some people simply don't want to learn. As the most recent "Anonymous" alluded, they just want you to do it for them. When a person is uneducated and that person refuses to learn, what do you call that person?

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  19. @JeffH0821
    [quote]can put some muscle behind it. You actually have the gall to blame indivduals for their own perception of Linux. Like it or not, most things in the Windows world "just work".[/quote]

    I take issue with your statement. Things in the Windows world do not "just work". After a fresh install of Windows on my wifes laptop what doesnt work. Video drivers, wireless drivers, card reader, dvd playing, flash websites, pdf reading, editing documents (besides plain txt files), printing. And the list goes on. I have to install support for everything I want to do. Really this is no different than Linux. There is one big difference. In linux I issue a command, perhaps via a gui perhaps not to install programs that bring support for said items, then wait. Oh my, I dont have to hit "Next" ten thousand times to complete each application install. Yes I blame users too. I blame them not so much for being ignorant as believing ignorance is acceptable. It is not only the fault of the user, its the fault of those supporting the users and those that the users work for. Basic understanding of how things work is a life requirement.
    Really wouldnt you blame a cell phone user for complaining about the fact that their cell phone does not work as well as their old corded dial tone phone? I would. The user needs to understand that cell phones require power, and thus to work need to be recharged. Somehow people managed to figure out that for cell phones to work they need charged, and they need to be in a covered area. People also figured out that if they would like their car to move they ought to put gas and change the oil in it. I really don't understand everyones complaints about things when they boil down to ignorance. Ignorance is NOT ok. Its fine if you know your ignorant but making the decision to stay that way no matter what operating system or product you are going to use is unforgivable. Users of course dont need to know the specifics of how an operating system and networking works but they need to have basic understanding how to use and maintain it.

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  20. I'm disappointed that yet again, a Linux user fails to point out the advantages of Windows in comparison to Linux.

    This is one sided, therefore biased, many people could complain about Windows, and many people can complain about Linux.

    I've failed to see one person with any thoughts for both Operating Systems to point out the advantages and disadvantages of both.

    I do agree with your post, but if it was lets say... Alot more unbiased towards Linux, it would actually be worth recommending Windows users to read.

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  21. Also, in response to the guy that argued Windows things just "dont work", it's the same with Linux.

    I've found quite a few hardware and software issues with Linux that took many hours to fix.

    Atleast with Windows you can usually plug things in, run a Windows Update and more often than not, find things work.

    And if that doesn't work, you usually install a driver, and bang, it's worked.

    With Linux it's quite literally, the same, unless of course you can tell me Linux is so perfect (which must be the reason Windows is currently the leader in Operating Systems) that it doesnt have it's own problems, errors, etc?

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  22. @Anonymous #umpteen - I failed to point out the advantages of Windows in comparison to Linux?

    Isn't nearly each complaint basically a failing of Linux in favor of Windows in some way?

    Windows MCE plays DVDs straight out of the box, while most Linuxes fail to do so. Linux often fails to have complete support for all hardware devices, but when a company like Dell sells you a Windows computer, all hardware works fine. Windows runs a great deal of software that simply doesn't exist and doesn't have a matched equivalent in the Linux world. Linux occasionally, though infrequently, requires users to type commands, but Windows eliminates that requirement by eliminating the CLI almost entirely and providing a way to accomplish all tasks through the GUI. Windows has all of the major video games available at your local retailer, but Linux has very few commercial games available.

    This article is not about promoting Linux as the Messiah of Operating Systems or some other fanboy garbage like that. It's about Linux and why people who are used to Windows don't get it. To suggest that this article fails to mention the advantages Windows has over Linux is to suggest that you didn't even skim the article.

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  23. from the first time i started using linux i knew i would stick with it. yea i struggled at first but it made me a better techie for sure. i don't ever want to be a drone man. the herd instinct of windows is crazy man. but people in the herd will beg to differ and that is their right i reckon..

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  24. Ah yes, the oft-mentioned "freedom": Freedom to not be able to play DVDs or mp3s that you have purchased.

    Freedom to be able to play a variety of Tetris clones and other Atari 7800 era games.

    Linux gaming arguably better than on Windows? Ok...

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  25. A smart software developer says "this is what complaints we're getting, let's fix them." Linux people say "these are the complaints we're getting. The complainers are wrong." And we wonder why linux is still obscure... Ubuntu, Linux Mint, and (probably) Google Chrome are not traditional, but they will bring linux to the rest of humanity.

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  26. @anonymous July 12, 2009 10:58 AM

    To paraphrase you, "there are 840 Linux distros out there..."

    Please explain to me how that makes sense, but many Linux users lampoon the notion of 7 versions of Windows.

    Also, maybe if all those people making their numerous distros worked on one stable version of Linux, it would be 840 times better.

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  27. "unless of course you can tell me Linux is so perfect (which must be the reason Windows is currently the leader in Operating Systems) that it doesnt have it's own problems, errors, etc?" ~ Some Anon

    Linux is not perfect, and "Windows is currently the leader in Operating Systems" due to potentially illegal contracts between the producers of software and hardware. Please Google "Microsoft antitrust" before posting here again.

    -----

    "Ah yes, the oft-mentioned "freedom": Freedom to not be able to play DVDs or mp3s that you have purchased.
    Freedom to be able to play a variety of Tetris clones and other Atari 7800 era games. " ~ Another Anon

    That freedom that you so sarcastically put in quotes is not freedom because of international patent law, not Linux. As stated in the article that you apparently didn't read, when you buy Windows or a DVD player or anything else that decodes DVDs, you're paying for the right to use something you already paid to own. Not freedom. Not Linux's fault.

    Your completely inaccurate statement about Tetris clones and Atari-era games being the only games available for Linux is direct proof that you failed to read the article in which I provide pain-free links to some very impressive games. The Penumbra series linked above has a physics engine better than the one present in the Half-Life 2 family of games. Savage 2: A Tortured Soul is a unique blend of RPG, FPS, and RTS games that most mainstream gaming studios are not innovative enough to imagine. Please actually use Linux or do some research. You're the kind of person who proves all of the arguments that I've made in the article and in the comments. Come back after you've tried a Linux distro from this century.

    -----

    "To paraphrase you, "there are 840 Linux distros out there..."
    Please explain to me how that makes sense, but many Linux users lampoon the notion of 7 versions of Windows." ~ Yet Another Anon

    Explanation: Microsoft is selling Windows to market en masse. They are not about letting you choose what you get. You simply get what you're given. Linux is about deciding what fits your needs. The 840 distros fit 840 different needs.

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  28. "...many Linux users lampoon the notion of 7 versions of Windows."

    But that's 7 versions of windows that you've had to shell out $xxx bucks for (multiply that by the number of computers you have).

    840 free distributions may be intimidating, but a select few dominate in popularity, and they are all free to use. And regardless of how many distrobutions there are, they ALL run the same code. They are all just a collection of programs that are organized in a way that someone felt useful. So the real sticker with Linux is to find the style of organization that you like and go with it, because the origin of the applications is the same.

    People often say that we should consolidate all of the Linux distributions into 1 so that we can get a really good version of Linux. What those people often don't realize is that they all run the same code, and they all offer feedback to the same code maintainers, which in turn results in improved code. In this scenario, you can see that the more distributions, the more diverse the feedback, and thus the better the code becomes.

    I think what most users want is a polished, well-integrated operating system that does what they expect, and does it quickly. This is as much of an organizational issue as it is programmatic.

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  29. @Ryan

    "me back after you've tried a Linux distro from this century."

    Nice try. I've taken two UNIX/Linux classes and I'm actually thinking of getting the Linux+ cert. I use Linux almost every day, though of course not as my only OS, as it isn't capable of doing what I need it to do.

    I use OpenSuSe 11.1, Debian Lenny, Fedora 11, and I've recently been trying out Linux Mint in Virtualbox. Now do the predictable thing and try to tell me that I'm making that up.

    On the subject of "Linux gaming": 95% of Linux gaming is comprised of the aforementioned Atari games, or you always here people talk about running WoW in Wine (Linux is so "superior" that it has to try to run Windows applications).

    This whole thing of attacking anyone who disagrees with you and saying that they're Microsoft (oops, I mean M$) shills and / or have never used Linux is getting old.

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  30. *hear not "here". Responding to all the Linux Zealot vitriol on the web momentarily affected my spelling.

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  31. Linux sucks. 0.99% marketshare confirms it.

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  32. If it's not capable of doing what you need it to do, please voice your concern. Here is as good a place as any. Tell people here or in forums what it's not doing, and we're sure to give you suggestions. If you prefer Windows, then go ahead and use Windows. I'm not stopping you. Nobody is. It's your choice. Watch the lot of us all not stop you.

    On the subject of "Linux gaming": yeah, there are a lot of 2D-style games out there. Have you seen how popular "casual" gaming has become these days? It's unbelievable. As for the 3D, hardware-taxing stuff, again, I ask you to take a look at the things I linked here. Do a Google search, too, because these are only a few examples. If you haven't noticed, basically everything id Software produces is ported to Linux rather quickly. They are a major producer of top-notch gaming software, and they've produced a handful of classics.

    I'm not going to tell you you're making anything up because I have no doubt that you can/have run these distros. I have no proof to the contrary. I could only assume that, since you seemed to be making untrue or fabulously sensationalized statements, you were a troll. I'm not trying to offend you here. That's not my goal. But part of my goal is to fend off anything that sounds even remotely like FUD, which is exactly what your comment sounded like.

    You blamed the patent restrictions of DVD and MP3 on Linux, which is about the farthest thing from the truth. Linux is neither to blame nor helpless in this matter as described in the article itself. You also say, "Linux gaming arguably better than on Windows? Ok..." as if I made the claim that gaming is already somehow the best choice for gaming. Again, as stated in the article, it would be if commercial games were more available on the system. You twisted my words. How else was I supposed to interpret your comment? You dropped something rather close to blatant lies straight onto my comments page and somehow expected me not to respond?

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  33. @Ryan

    If you haven't noticed, id has dropped Linux and stated that ET: Quake Wars was their last Linux offering.

    I can see, like many other Linux Zealots, you are incapable of rational discussion with others possessing other viewpoints. I can also infer by your rambling syntax that you have problems.

    Flame on.

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  34. Very well written article. You did your best effort but still your arguments are as usual Geeks argument. Users are not Geek. I'm Geek at work I don't want to be a Geek at home when I want to install something I don't want to think about apt-get and above all what I should type after, it is as if we were in the old day when DOS was in reign. I can do batch file in DOS command when I need to but really when I need to automate complex task otherwise I'm as lazy as I can I want to click next next :)

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  35. Oh, I forgot to respond to your first paragraph, about you and others making suggestions to help me, ok, here goes:

    "Suggest" something on par with Visual Studio 2008 for C#/ASP.Net development. No, don't say MonoDevelop, I want to be able to develop .Net 3.5 applications in an IDE on the same level as VS.

    "Suggest" how I can get drivers for my Lenovo Y510's HD audio that work in Linux, and sounds as good as what I hear in Vista and Windows 7. I want a suggestion that doesn't involve weeks of messing with OSS/ALSA/PulseAudio and still not yielding the desired result.

    "Suggest" where I can find modern games (not Doom, Quake 3, etc) for Linux not requiring the failure that is WINE.

    (Here is an example of how well Call of Duty 4 works on WINE: http://forum.wine-reviews.net/games/call-of-duty-4-works-in-wine.html

    here's an excerpt from an easily impressed zealot Hi, I just tried Call of Duty 4 Demo in latest wine, and it is working, there are some problems with graphic (gun or units are not visible), but it works, good work!!! "

    Also, I think you have me mixed up with someone else, insofar as your statement: "you blamed the patent restrictions of DVD and MP3 on Linux, which is about the farthest thing from the truth. Linux is neither to blame nor helpless in this matter as described in the article itself"

    That wasn't me.

    In conclusion, everyone who points out deficiencies in Linux is not teh Ev1l. Perhaps listening to some constructive criticism and taking it seriously would help Linux.

    The average user can barely double click on an .exe, let alone type in a string of arcane commands. You can blame Microsoft, but it won't change the fact that that is how it is.

    Telling people they are "ignorant" because they expect their DVDs and mp3s to work, will not help you with your goals. Unless your goal is to further alienate people.

    People are not going to switch to Linux if you cannot provide them with tangible benefits.

    People want their computer to work, they don't want to join a pseudo-ideological cause/cult.

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  36. Ryan I followed that link. According to Server Spy all of the sites linked to from that page are running IIS, which means a Windows OS underneath, the text stating Linux not with standing.

    I'll grant this may have been the case, due to outsourcing, but there is no evidence that it is or was the case, other than the statement on the page.

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  37. I, like most Linux advocates, have demonstrated the power of Linux to people who had no idea such power existed in technology, much less in free technology.

    Right off the bat: the sentiment that that author is some sort of technological messiah due solely to membership of the Linux club. This is exactly the kind of attitude that lumps these advocates into the likes of cults.

    I have a friend who was at my house one day while I was at work. For some reason, he needed me to reboot my computer. So I did, via SSH.

    Wow, awesome. Did you know Windows can do the same thing via Windows' "shutdown" command? Through SSH, which is also available for Windows? And that's neglecting Remote Desktop, GoToMyPC, VNC, and the plethora of other available options. Aside, why are you rebooting your computer because someone asked you to?

    When I'm at work, I stream music off of my desktop at home for my listening pleasure via the web.

    Because the hassle of setting all this up and depending on lack of congestion on your consumer bandwidth connection is so much easier than throwing all your music on these massive USB flash drives they're selling these days for like $20-$30 or just investing in a portable player, which, again, thanks to modern technology, can effectively act as a portable media center.

    Sometimes if I need to do something from my desktop when I'm working, I'll X-forward an application to my work computer and do it that way.

    X forwarding is a pain in the ass and flaky over anything less than a few megabits. Even in Linux, VNC will be the superior option, and Remote Desktop kills either method. VNC and RD can be used over dialup. If you're dead set against working in a remote window, remote file access can be used. If you don't have the application locally to work with the data, you have to ask yourself why you're working with an employer who demands your time at home but won't give you the necessary tools. In any case, working remotely hasn't impressed anyone for most of the decade. Even Windows 98 had the tools.

    People see [...] the various desktop effects that Compiz provides, and marvel at how awesome and powerful it is.

    Software bling != "awesome and powerful". They were monetarily suckered by the superficial presentation, which is exactly what the desktop ecosystem focuses on. It's like a real life version of all the blinking beeping computers from Hollywood.

    When I help them set it up, they get frustrated and quit.

    Because once the shine wears off, they notice it's just a fresh coat of paint on top of a rusted through chassis.

    The complaints that I hear are consistent. Always.

    When sane individuals hear the same complaints from a variety of people, they assume that, gee golly, maybe all these different people who keep identifying the same problems have a point.

    I'm here to solve problems.

    Awesome. You are unique in the Linux community. Most of them just want to tell me that I'm stupid and wrong and the only "correct" way to accomplish a task is through some 1970s work flow envisioning.

    So I will offer a solution to each complaint that I've heard a dozen times as I go.

    Uh oh. This is too easy. I have a feeling what you're offering are not solutions at all! At least, not when considered by normal, rational people.

    "I put a DVD in my player and it won't play." This problem, like most of them on this list, is the result of user ignorance

    Sigh. The "you're an idiot" defense. This "problem" is unique to Linux. The other systems behave exactly as expected: put in the DVD and get a movie out of it.

    The rant criticizing the world's perception that "movie -> DVD" and "music -> MP3" (I modified the relationships to say what you meant to) is pretty misguided because, for most intents and purposes, that's exactly the case.

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  38. Next time, the user should specifically ask how to do the task using the mouse instead of the keyboard.

    Yeah, 99+% of the world are idiots for expecting intuitive instructions on accomplishing basic tasks. It should occur to them that they may be asked to interface with a computer in ways they thought they left behind in the 80s. News flash: Linux will be 100% fail until the terminal is so buried that most people don't realize it exists. See Mac OS for an example of "ur doin it right".

    Your "Linux is not ready for the desktop" section doesn't explain how Mac OS ascended in market share despite its unfamiliarity to both Windows users and users of Mac OS Classic. It also doesn't explain why many long time Linux users, like myself, eventually abandoned it when they saw the emperor has no clothes.

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  39. anytime you buy any device that plays MP3 files, part of your money spent is paying the owners of the DVD and MP3 license. Some company turns a profit every time you buy a DVD or MP3 player whether or not they manufactured or even designed the device.

    They spent years and money developing the format, why shouldn't they get reimbursed? It's not like the fees are unreasonable. Besides, you're free to make your own format and convince Hollywood to take it. What? That takes a lot of time and money? Who woulda thunk?

    [Linux is] about freedom of usage.

    Except to play DVDs.

    How free are you to play a DVD anywhere?

    Works everywhere but Linux.

    In other words, why should you have to buy the right to watch DVDs that you have either bought from a store, rented, or made yourself?

    What are you talking about? I have the disc right here. It works in Windows, Mac OS, and the DVD player I bought for $20 in 2003. It does not work with Linux out of the box.

    The guys over at VideoLAN have begun distributing a library of code called libdvdcss that decrypts DVDs just fine.

    This library is ancient. The techies know what it does, but experts and novices are united in the sentiment that trawling through repositories for basic functionality is undesirable.

    Lots of rambling about Microsoft crippling driver availability for Linux but not a word about how Apple gets by. Linux wireless may be improved but last I knew it still had problems with basic stuff like connecting to APs with spaces in their SSIDs and passing credentials with non-alphanumeric characters. This quote is particularly instructive:

    Rarely is a piece of hardware rendered completely unusable due to a driver issue.

    So your standards are anything above "completely unusable"? Even then stuff like printers, scanners, and webcams fail the test because they generally are completely useless in Linux.

    Great intentionally disingenuous ranting in the software installation section. No one "wants" to go through all that; they want the software to be there in the first place. Problem is, no one's devised a better method than "load the installer from CD or downloaded file". Plus, take a cue from yourself and try a recent version of Windows. It gives you a place where you can type in the name of the program you want with no menu hunting.

    The repository system is no fix to this. At best it does is remove the manual download and execute portion. It's still up to the user to realize what he wants and to hunt for it, except now there's no guarantee that the software is available for his specific distro where there is a guarantee that just about any random Windows program will work on any random Windows installation. Then there's the problem of distributions shipping old software...well, moving on...

    id Software is porting more and more games to Linux.

    id has always ported games to Linux. It's always been more of a curiosity/public service thing than a profit motivator. I agree with you that Linux is not viable for gaming software (or commercial software in general).

    some might argue that [Linux is] actually better for gaming than Windows

    Nobody would argue this. Linux is missing crucial frameworks to make game development viable. OpenGL is not comparable to Direct3D, let alone the rest of the DirectX suite. Linux lacks a common deployment environment, so developers can't target a common denominator. Finally, the only video processing suitable for gaming is to be had through NVIDIA's proprietary set, whose existence kinda puts a damper on the whole "freedom" thing.

    If all else fails and that software is an absolute necessity, then, yes, there's always Windows. Feel free to use it.

    You admitted to this yourself with using Windows for games. Everybody will have at least one of these, so why would they split attention between two operating systems, wasting time rebooting and hard drive space, when they could just stick with one and get all their work done?

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  40. You do realize there is no mechanism to revoke your right to watch a DVD after you've purchased the medium and the player? Do you also realize that even if such a mechanism existed revoking those rights would be financial suicide Effectively, there is no issue.

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  41. "so why would they split attention between two operating systems, wasting time rebooting and hard drive space, when they could just stick with one and get all their work done?"

    That's exactly the frame of mind that I'm (finally) in now. I have Linux partitions wasting space on my laptop and desktop.

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  42. DVDs play just fine in Linux, lrn2libdvdcss.

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  43. Yeah, OpenGL is so terrible Blizzard uses it to make all their highly desirable games.

    X Forwarding works just fine, and is something you can do with RDP unless you buy expensive Citrix crap.

    "Software bling != "awesome and powerful", except when Microsoft does it right? Windows Vista most notable change was the addition of "bling".

    "Lots of rambling about Microsoft crippling driver availability for Linux but not a word about how Apple gets by." Hrmm, maybe, because APPLE MAKES THEIR OWN MACHINES? Yes if Linux was put on exactly four different models of PC we could easily write perfect drivers for it, but we have to support thousands of devices, in millions of different configurations. Apple hasn't archived this.

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  44. I have to single out this one dumbass:

    -----------------------------
    "Suggest" something on par with Visual Studio 2008 for C#/ASP.Net development.
    -----------------------------

    So your beef with Linux is it sucks at making Windows applications?

    I wish I could say something funny about that, but it's so stupid it's beyond funny stupid.

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  45. lets face it Linux is a threat to Microsoft, that is no doubt, if Linux is not a threat to Microsoft then Microsoft will say nothing and do nothing to stop it from Spreading, Microsoft is doing a lot behind to stop the spread of Linux, eg everyone will know netbook war, what about the TOM TOM Linux use.

    let me say people who is so Microsoft lover and don't like change, you will expect to change, does not matter you like it or not

    Linux is growing and Microsoft dont like it, if Microsoft dont try to control it now it will do huge harm in their future. geek is what we need to develop a better and powerful OS and will fill all the need of people

    http://www.unifiedkernel.com/en/index.php
    is a interesting project.

    Linux is growing very fast and development of the software and support is also growing at a rapid rate, that we might not even know yet

    developing country is a key point for Linux expandsion point for Linux people are willing to develop on things are free because country it self don't have much money, so Linux is the best alternative to go.

    Microsoft got a fight ahead of them and Linux too, Microsoft will never win in developing country, Microsoft will have hard time winning in Chinas market, thanks for the free software Microsoft, which is call pirating make me want to laugh. there is millions of Linux developer in china, this is a HUGE problem for Microsoft. let face it Microsoft is trying to pull as many people in, they can't face this huge defeat, which is facing them now in many developing countries

    lets face it at this rate of Linux development, after 10 years Microsoft will face huge problems.

    Great article let us focus on the development of software and the OS. Micosoft have enough problems that they can't get thier head around, by developing a more powerful OS will create more problems for them and ripping their hair out.

    Linux at this point in time have 90% of everyday needs, people can run of Pure Linux if they want to and have the power to do so.
    im only using Linux of some of my system, only when i have not choice i will use windows, but let just wait and see, i see Linux will grow very rapid rate, 3-4 years we will see huge result

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  46. I started playing with linux when redhat 5 came out, and have seen it jump from my hobby-on-the-side to my main operating system. Sure I dual boot for "just in case I need it" stuff from windows, but that's the cool thing about linux... no one says you have to be linux only. Unlike M$ that wipes out your MBR when you install trying to make you ONLY use windows. Alot of people say it's hard to learn, that's the biggest question I get. People are always telling me "I don't want to learn a new operating system". Funny part is, it's not hard to learn at all. I installed Ubuntu on my inlaw's pc about 3 years ago because I was having to go over there every other week to fix some sort of virus or worm or god knows what issue. Since I have installed linux, I have had to fix their computer 0 times. They still do everything they need to do, they feel secure, they feel safe to store all their family photo's and home videos on it. And they never call me anymore for anything for their computer. Please note, these people are about 60 years old, and not technically inclined, and they use their computers for media, web surfing and to do their taxes. They use it everyday.

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  47. i love when people say Linux can't do, next Geeks will develop something to perform the task, please say something that Linux can't do and let the geeks prove your wrong, windows lovers

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  48. http://h20424.www2.hp.com/program/browsebuy/cn/zh/pavilion/products_cq3000.asp

    do you see the word Linux, Amazing they are selling Linux as the main OS, dont see that in US so you

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  49. people in China likes Cheaps stuff, Linux is cheap enough i think, Its free and its not that hard to use, meaning people in china almost all young people will know Linux is a OS Alernative to Windows, go bye Windows Hello Linux, Westeren country are very very blind from the paid ads from Microsoft, stores in China will only sell Linux OS, the system altogather is cheaper any system that been sold with windows is more expensive, Cheap stuff is nice as people of republic says. cheap stuff with the same hardware, why not. now Microsoft run your ad in china, for cheap stuff is nice and your stuff is not cheap its to expensive my friend please cut the price down, for no no no to expensive i don't want it as people of republic says.. makes me laugh, for Microsoft is doing fine in the worlds markets, what a joke

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  50. "Nobody would argue this. Linux is missing crucial frameworks to make game development viable. OpenGL is not comparable to Direct3D, let alone the rest of the DirectX suite. Linux lacks a common deployment environment, so developers can't target a common denominator. Finally, the only video processing suitable for gaming is to be had through NVIDIA's proprietary set, whose existence kinda puts a damper on the whole "freedom" thing.""

    my Friend take those word back, for very soon you will sollow it back your self and be wordless, all your other comments are just rubbish as time will tell you. i love how Microsoft play this game but this game does not work in countries that Law is not strong, they will stuff it in your face and tell you to get lost hehind your back. so there is a choice here, there is no doubt Linux is advancing very fast and development for games on Linux will be in your face soon enough since some many developer in Linux, games is also being developed, this is no difference Microsoft can not hind these news forever and developing country will spread the good news when they develop something new, there have been so stong growth in Linux market around the World then let me ask how many people in US knows this fact????
    please comment i will like to hear from you

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  51. quote: Linux lacks a common deployment environment, so developers can't target a common denominator.

    Interestingly that isn't a problem for every FOSS application developed for linux (10s to 100s of thousands of applications). And yet it is dragged up as a problem for games developers.

    Every FOSS developer releases their code to the distributors who build it for the deployment environment of their choice.

    OK, so you're maybe going to tell me the Games companies can't do this because they are proprietary software companies.

    That fact hasn't stopped Skype, or nVidea, or Cannon, or HP, or broadcomm or any of dozens of other proprietary software companies, who manage to have their application released via the Distribution release environment.

    No the problem isn't a lack of coherent release environment. the problem is a willingness on the part of the games companies to 1) release code for Linux, period. 2) to take advantage of Free Software developers, whio would actually port it to linux for Free, and who understand linux 3) dog with a bone attitude tjhat proprietary companies in general exhibit. They couldn't bring themselves to seek help, even free help, from the FOSS community, even though the relevent members of the FOSS community are willing to be bound by NDAs.

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  52. A couple of days ago I installed Ubuntu Remix on my U810 (also ubuntu umpc but lets keep with remix). Almost everything is working and looks good, very good use of screen space (linux has gone veeery far in these last 10 years) and nice app selection.

    Touchscreen is not working (kind of major problem in a pseudo-tablet pc)... ok, so there must be a workaround ... (some time googling) yep there is!, changing a setting in the setup, but that makes the touchscreen less reliable so that is a no go.

    So ... more hunting. Hours ... and yes! a buildable module for the touchscreen. I have downloaded headers and minimal stuff for a module build. I still have not tried it. It gives me some pleasure to fool round with this stuff, is entertaining, I learn stuff and so on ...

    BUT if this was my REAL JOB I would be kicking remix out of my mini - "almost zoolander like" computer right now. Why? because my work time is more valuable than a copy of windows. The bundled copy of windows vista or windows xp tablet works perfectly out of the box and I can still use other open source software if I want to.

    Do I care if some institute in europe gets money from a license on MP3? (yep ... M$ has to pay licenses too) NO.. really I don't care right now, I'd have preferred something free of course back then when mp3 was just gaining momentum. But reality says that the standard right now is not free and I want my mp3s to work.

    So please stop whining:

    If it works --> good... we are too cool

    It does not work --> their bad, they are a bunch of satan followers trying to conspire in secret to bring the dark empire upon us with hardware designed by a Sith

    And other thing ... stop your messianic speech. You are not better than anyone just for building your kernel (easier now ... but still so unfriendly), do not talk to people about how some forces have put "ignorance" upon them. They are users; if your job is well done ... the user will believe that everything is flowing even if this is the first time they are doing something.

    I see the linux crowd to full of followers willing to feel identified with something and stand together in a fight against the evil one talking about things like "code available for reading" when 99.999% of them are unable to read a line in C.

    I like linux but it is not my religion. Want people to use it? then keep humble and ask what people need (not what you think they need) and if you are just copying/pasteing some solution from a forum... then keep yourself in line, you are not an uber-hacker. You just know and have enough time to google.

    Just my two cents (if you decide to take money of course)

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  53. Hrmm, maybe, because APPLE MAKES THEIR OWN MACHINES?

    Wrong. Apple uses the same components you people swear up and down Microsoft has in their pocket. I'm talking about vendors like AMD, Intel, NVIDIA, and all the third party stuff that works with Mac and not Linux.

    what about the TOM TOM Linux use

    Tom Tom tried to pull one and avoid royalty payments. It didn't work out for them. Because Microsoft isn't suing every FAT32 violator out there doesn't mean these freeloaders aren't breaking the law. Don't like it? Stop using FAT. It's all infected and stuff by Microsoft anyway. Why do you want it so badly?

    Good for you guys in anticipating my "Linux lacks market share" argument and preemptively backpedaling to "But! It's huge in Country X!" QQ, China's preeminent instant messaging platform and the world's third most popular overall, is available in stable form for Windows only. Why would this be if Linux is so huge? Linux's "preview" version hasn't been updated in a year.

    "Developing countries" is a red herring because they're not focused on Linux vs. Windows. For them, it's a matter of, "How do I eat today?" Once they're beyond the basics they'll evaluate business on value, not cost, like every other functioning economic society does.

    lets face it at this rate of Linux development, after 10 years Microsoft will face huge problems.

    Yeah, you guys said the same thing ten years ago. And then ten years before that. Still waiting for HURD.

    Linux at this point in time have 90% of everyday needs

    More backpedaling. This is the same as "Well, my hardware isn't, like, totally useless in Linux!" What's the point? Anything less than the full 100% is a regression.

    they feel secure, they feel safe to store all their family photo's and home videos on it.

    See, most people don't have this mortal fear of information and computers you guys do. Even if the threat of losing your pictures to an attacker (whatever that means) was real, most people wouldn't give a shit. Why would they? They're boring photos. What you're doing is called projection, a psychological condition where you ascribe your insecurities onto others.

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  54. take those word back, for very soon you will sollow it back your self and be wordless, all your other comments are just rubbish as time will tell you [...] please comment i will like to hear from you

    I gladly accept your belligerent challenge. Please define the time period in which Linux will amaze me so much that I will "sollow my word back myself and be wordless" and please tell me how to accomplish such a thing. Thanks.

    [Microsoft's] game does not work in countries that Law is not strong

    So what you're saying is countries run by lawless hooligans are somehow going to generate a technological platform to rival that designed by the world's most powerful corporation? This is a delusion that even I'm unfamiliar with. Tell me more.

    Interestingly that isn't a problem for every FOSS application developed for linux

    Unless you count the problem of wasting untold resources on the dead weight of versioning and dependencies as extolled by distributions as to disguise the situation. But, hey, who needs bug fixes and features when we can spend our time repackaging the same software over and over?

    2) to take advantage of Free Software developers, whio would actually port it to linux for Free

    Haha, yeah right. Just like they wrote those drivers for Intel and ATI graphics adapters and Creative Labs sound cards after the specs were released. Oh, that's right. That never happened. They kept on whining until the companies did the work anyway then they whined some more when the code got out of date. Besides, we already had someone who did this for games and still failed: Loki. After years of listening to Linux users lie about their intentions of buying Linux games only if they were available, Loki delivered and crashed hard when the "community" turned their back on them for delivering exactly what was asked for.

    They couldn't bring themselves to seek help, even free help, from the FOSS community

    Yeah, because that goes so well when it happens:

    http://braid-game.com/news/?p=364

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  55. RabidWeezle has touched on a point of some consequence. It matters which average user we speak of. I doubt that many average users spend time in these forums.

    Flaker has some points as well. Discovering what a user wants to accomplish is a good place to start.

    As for cults, anyone who spends much time in the forums has cultic traits. We don't come here to be objective dispassionate observers.

    And everyone needs their medication regulated now and then.

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  56. from July 12, 2009 10:18 PM

    maybe you should start to experience what chinese people are like, maybe since im a chinese that will explian a lot will it not????
    maybe you do some business in china and see how they will back stab, when they see the chance, Law applies in china, now goto china and see how law really works, did you see the road law working in china, maybe you should reconsider your word, road law is working partly, they can simply bribe the police, then they will leave, Law is getting strong in china, but that will take at 10 years to be really effective. Microsoft WILL NOT WIN, i will tell you now they will back stab Microsoft so badly that they will cry back to US, now let so how the law of pirating affect china population, they will say yep yep but how does the government going to control pirating problems, getting rid of OS that cost money will be very effective way to control it. now explain is that not a good way to solve that problem fast. next Microsoft can place ads, thus bring profit to marketing companys and bringing the economy up, but those that mean they have to buy your product??? when the computer sector knows there is free alterative they will move to it, because they know people can just buy Linux as the main OS then the user can buy a pirated copies of windows to replace it bring nothing to Microsoft, but the government will think of bringing a close to pirating problems to strengthen the law in the country, thus meaning this a great ways to do so.

    these is law in china, but law must be strengthen, but what is the best way to do it and take the most less time and effect to do so

    so the money is not coming from no where to support this project, as a country they must think of ways to develop ways to surpress problems, people are not developing for free, there is many company and government agents supporting to push foward to stregthen the country, now what is a better way to do than this way

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  57. People buy DVDs. They aren't buzzwords to them. They are physical objects people put into a DVD player or a computer and they expect to watch a movie this way. If Linux can't play a DVD as easy as people expect, the problem is with Linux, period. Give people the functionality they expect, the same functionality the competition gives them, and you won't find them making any complaints.

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  58. did you not read the article. dvd's are a proprietary format, so a free os can't distribute the decoders without paying a fee to the license-holder.

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  59. quote:Linux sucks. 0.99% marketshare confirms it.
    _
    Actually according to Microsoft, Linux market share is about the same as Apples, maybe slightly higher.

    http://blogs.eweek.com/applewatch/contnet/macbook/microsoft_ceo_scoffs_at_mac_share_gains.html

    The Blue segment in the graph is Apple's OSX share, while the Violet segment is the Linux market share (according to Microsoft), both segments are about the same size, and represent about 12% to 14%, the violet segment looks slightly larger than the blue segment (but it's hard to be sure), so the Linux market share coule well be higher than the Mac OSX share, This is according to Microsoft.

    So do stop trotting out the adnauseum repeated (since 1995 at least), and patently false statistic of 1% or less. Clearly Microsoft thinks Linux market share is much, much higher than that. And Microsoft should know.

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  60. sorry that's.

    http://blogs.eweek.com/applewatch/content/macbook/microsoft_ceo_scoffs_at_mac_share_gains.html

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  61. @Anonymous (dvd playback)

    "... dvd's are a proprietary format, so a free os can't distribute the decoders without paying a fee to the license-holder ..."

    And Average Joe should care about that because ....?? Experience tells him that DVD works everywhere BUT linux. The rest of the explanation will sound like lame apologies. In the best case scenario you can get a response like:
    "ugh!! too bad!! can I pay the fee to see my DVD and keep linux??"

    And that is if you care to explain the license issue in normal tone. If you go with the over-the-edge-hard-core-freedom-fighters they will tell you that you are bad because you want to use a dvd. At that point Average Joe (a polite one) will turn around and buy a cheap copy of winxp (assuming it was not included in his machine) and then you lost other guy for your cause.

    ReplyDelete
  62. Good article. These are the 'complaints' I most often hear too. I made a GUI app that users (and our admins) can run on a fresh Ubuntu install that allows DVD playback, MP3 playback, etc. I'm really sorry you are having to deal with these Microsoft fanboys who simply don't understand the meaning of freedom. To them, it seems, freedom is about the world appearing to work around you rather than understanding what is pulling the strings and being free to cut or manipulate those strings. Again, good job pointing out some of the common problems we face as Linux users who try to help others adopt free software. We should all take this list to heart and try to educate the user and 'fix' as many of these problems as is necessary.

    ReplyDelete
  63. Linux zealots are so 1999. Give it a rest. Everybody has moved on to OSX.

    ReplyDelete
  64. FREEDOM! Because freedom isn't free! Our troops shed blood each day in the war against Microsoft! Zealots, prepare to go through the warp gate! My life for Aiur! Honor guide me!

    ReplyDelete
  65. @THE PROTOSS: YES! Let's sellout our freedoms for easiness' sake! Just like Bush sold out our freedoms for ease! WHhile we're at it let's all worship the government in V for Vendetta!

    ReplyDelete
  66. YES! Because everything I use is completely open! The chipsets in my computer are completely open! The hardware I use was crafted by freedom-loving hardware manufacturers such as Intel, AMD, and Western Digital! Who gave it to me for free! The metal and plastic in my computer is free too! Free! Free! Free! No part of my computer has been built by any corporation whatsoever!

    ReplyDelete
  67. Funny! These Windows pimps would have us believe that comparing pre-installed Windows to self-installed Linux is apples-to-apples.

    Who are you trying to fool? Your next victim...eh, client???

    Although I could do it myself, my last two computers were purchased with Linux pre-installed, all drivers and codecs already included. Pop a DVD in, it plays...well, not in the netbook since it doesn't have a DVD drive, but you get the point. Dell had already included licensed codecs and LinDVD.

    Now, pardon me while I grind away on WoW and talk to the guildies on Ventrilo. :)

    ReplyDelete
  68. Linux isn't free. I'm a slave to the design decisions of every project out there. It's impossible for me to roll my own versions of every software project on there. No, Linux isn't free. True freedom comes from designing your own applications and operating system from scratch. Linux users are just as much of a slave as Windows and Mac users are.

    ReplyDelete
  69. -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
    Hash: SHA512

    http://linuxphilia.blogspot.com/2009/07/seven-complaints-about-linux-and-wh
    y.html?showComment=1247496376851#c4175608575234669963
    Quick Steven, give use the name of that software you created for Ubuntu
    (and no other distro)! Hopefully it will be in Ubuntu’s repository, yep
    that will shut those pesky wintards up, nothing could possible go wrong. By
    the way, which version of Ubuntu is you software compatible with?


    http://linuxphilia.blogspot.com/2009/07/seven-complaints-about-linux-and-wh
    y.html?showComment=1247510544630#c6362370313106485765

    Did someone say World of Warcraft on Linux?

    http://www.desktoplinux.com/news/NS4727367100.html

    http://www.desktoplinux.com/news/NS4169902864.html

    It’s WINE, a preparatory emulator or dead alpha client version for you!
    W00T

    Hope your drivers work!

    http://computersight.com/operating-systems/linux/play-world-of-warcraft-in-
    ubuntu-linux/
    https://help.ubuntu.com/community/WorldofWarcraft


    Ventrillo?
    First comment:
    ITS NOT FREE!! ------> It does not support Linux!

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=41737

    I dubbed such sentiment ‘seig file!’ All hail Führer Stallman, seig
    file!

    Ssshhhh don’t tell anyone Canonical is a private company and commercial
    sponsor! It is a secret!

    -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
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    ReplyDelete
  70. Quote:Linux zealots are so 1999. Give it a rest. Everybody has moved on to OSX.

    Apprantly not, according to Microsoft, Linux market share is the same as OSX, at around 12% to 14%, or slightly higher

    http://blogs.eweek.com/applewatch/contnet/macbook/microsoft_ceo_scoffs_at_mac_share_gains.html

    The Blue segment in the graph is Apple's OSX share, while the Violet segment is the Linux market share (according to Microsoft), both segments are about the same size, and represent about 12% to 14%, the violet segment looks slightly larger than the blue segment (but it's hard to be sure), so the Linux market share coule well be higher than the Mac OSX share, This is according to Microsoft. And Microsoft should know, after all they know how many computers get sold with Windows on them, so they also know how many never call home, and also how many stop calling home.

    ReplyDelete
  71. ^ PAGE NOT FOUND.

    Nice try, noob.

    ReplyDelete
  72. -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
    Hash: SHA512

    It is a conspirrrrracy I tells you!!! M$ has secret tracking software in
    their operating system!! The paid M$ ninjas are coming to get you!!!
    Quickly tracyanne enlighten us to M$ dastardly methods, after all you seem
    to know about them.

    OH NOES!!! The evil M$ paid shills had invalidated that link, there
    watching us just like on Digg.

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    ReplyDelete
  73. Sup, dawg? I heard you like running Linux so I embedded Linux into your Linux so you can use Linux while you're using Linux.

    ReplyDelete
  74. at Anonymous try following the link from here http://www.osnews.com/thread?350612

    it leads th the article. it looks like this site breaks the url.

    Judging by your [very poor] use of language I've been in the I game longer than you've been alive, Richard Cranium.

    ReplyDelete
  75. -----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
    Hash: SHA512

    Quickly tracyanne enlighten us to how M$ has their operating system phone
    home, after all you seem to know about how it occurs.

    -----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
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    rO2Fy5CTJjfQRKcA3jXpLGcx+74KWSveA1zYxWIci8zAUj1pwMWAHSly8TwQCzqJ
    ZSTBCEXemFnU/lLQSmrh8iizYpeJhUwp45YeGFiIQqGod1bMWpi30xcPQcKZxgGB
    K7CqF0sbW/oEvqVRdPrHjL2zMJJKu0N2LYbKOK9EDcfSk+pQKv9VKhXMDPUX73sx
    zGX2DuKeB5OsmxmC4+/UfujvJV82zYy8E2+qhLHFtV74oR2enYJsXk8VuM3hiydz
    HrrIxKaNeQM=
    =GjVP
    -----END PGP SIGNATURE-----

    ReplyDelete
  76. By the way, regarding Microsoft running Linux servers ... these are the (relevant) response headers from "search.microsoft.com":

    Server: Microsoft-IIS/6.0
    P3P: CP="BUS CUR CONo FIN IVDo ONL OUR PHY SAMo TELo"
    X-Powered-By: ASP.NET

    Sure seems like Linux. Feel free to try this with every Microsoft domain listed by Netcraft. You're in for a big surprise.

    ReplyDelete
  77. @anonymous July 12, 2009 8:00 PM

    Hey, mouth-breathing simpleton. I realize you lack reading comprehension, so I'll break it down for you:

    I didn't say my only "beef" (who are you, Andrew Dice Clay? Whadsamadda U? You got a beef wit' somebody?) was the fact that I want to do .Net development on Linux.

    I would have actually just stuck to the fact that Linux has nothing comparable to Visual Studio, but I mentioned .Net languages since you zealots are constantly talking about Mono and C#.

    Once again, your OS is so great, and Microsoft "sucks", yet you have to find ways to use Microsoft technologies.

    I like how you also tried to skip my other complaints/"beefs":

    Lack of a stable sound ABI / drivers, and lack of modern games. Before you mention 5 games keep in mind it is nothing compared to the Windows gaming ecosystem.

    ReplyDelete
  78. @Tracyanne

    Actually, LOTS of Linux blogs/sites were ecstatically stating that Linux finally broke 1% on the desktop recently. Now you don't trust their statements?

    (18,000 distros combined. Given away free. For 18 years. Just now breaking 1%.)

    I like Linux (and Windows), and I truly want to see it improve, but hiding from it's shortcomings, and blaming everything on Microsoft isn't going to help.

    ReplyDelete
  79. @WanderFreeForever

    quote:Quickly tracyanne enlighten us to how M$ has their operating system phone
    home, after all you seem to know about how it occurs.

    So you've never used a legal copy of Windows, then?

    You've never had to enter the upteen charater long Authentication key?

    And you've never updated your Windows system?

    Or even, I suppose, connected it to the internet.

    Obviously you've never, also, read the Windows EULA, where Microsoft state that they will at their (not yours) descretion collect non personally identifying data about the system and how it is used.

    As to how they would do it, it's trivially easy, such a phone home system can be built into any DLL, virus writers do it all the time.

    One of the first applications I wrote for Windows was an application capable of calling an external server, that was 1997 and the application was written in VB6, it was one of those horrible ActiveX applications.

    ReplyDelete
  80. @Tracyanne

    I wouldn't tout those language skills just yet if I were you. You may want to learn about the wonders of capital letters and writing something beyond short, comparative sentence fragments.

    Cheers.

    ReplyDelete
  81. Anonymous said...

    @Tracyanne

    Actually, LOTS of Linux blogs/sites were ecstatically stating that Linux finally broke 1% on the desktop recently. Now you don't trust their statements?

    No I don't. because the evidence has always been that Linux has more market share than 1%, even the anti Linux mob were stating 2% back in 2000 - 2004

    But I do trust Microsoft's figures when they make a presentation to their shareholders, as share prices are dependant on shareholder confidence, which means microsoft would want to try to make the competition look less successful, not more successful.

    ReplyDelete
  82. @Tracyanne

    IT'S A GOOD THING LINUX DOESN'T PHONE HOME:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trusted_Computing


    Silly zealots.

    ReplyDelete
  83. @Tracyanne

    I love it. If Linux's detractors - or concerned users - cite the low market share, they are vilified as "M$" shills. Now when the Linux community itself cites the same low market share, you choose not to believe that either.

    ReplyDelete
  84. Anonymous said...

    @Tracyanne

    I wouldn't tout those language skills just yet if I were you. You may want to learn about the wonders of capital letters and writing something beyond short, comparative sentence fragments.


    I have an excuse. I'm on a plane, and there's been a bit of turbulence, it's been shaking the letters around on the screen, and some of them even fell off.

    What's your excuse? That is ouside of the fact that you don't have the intestinal fortitude to post other than anonymously, Richard Cranium.

    ReplyDelete
  85. @Tracyanne

    You may want to get hip to those homophones:

    Your use of "dependant" rather than dependent.

    Another example of the awe-inspiring language skills you've alluded to!

    ReplyDelete
  86. @Tracyanne

    I have no idea who Richard Cranium is. In case you haven't noticed, there are a few of us posting here under the Anonymous moniker. Paranoid zealot.

    ReplyDelete
  87. Hahahaha "intestinal fortitude". You zealots have this fascination with wanting to know someone's name online.

    Weirdo.

    Here's you: "I'm brave, I fought in the GNU War and used my real name." "I stand up for freeeeeedoooom."

    ReplyDelete
  88. Anonymous said...

    @Tracyanne

    IT'S A GOOD THING LINUX DOESN'T PHONE HOME:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trusted_Computing


    Silly zealots.


    You are missing point. Microsoft can know how many Windows computers are sold, because they have binding agreements with the manufacturers to only supply hardware with Windows pre installed. They know how many of those computers are used with Windows because the Authentication key has to be validated by a microsoft server, and by use of simple aritmetic can work out how many aren't being used with Windows.

    Those machine not running Windows must by the process of elimination be running a BSD Unix, a Linux distribution or some other operating system. The majority of them will be running L a Linux distribution.

    That is how Microsoft can have a very good idea that the Linux market share is about the same as, maybe even greater than the Mac OSX share.

    Of course Linux distributions phone home, I never said otherwise, how else do you expect the updates to occur, how else do you expect all those thousands of applications to be magically available to to the Linux user, Richard Cranium.

    ReplyDelete
  89. Anonymous said...

    @Tracyanne

    I have no idea who Richard Cranium is.

    Richard Cranium is you Dick Head.

    ReplyDelete
  90. Very incisive and perceptive article. I always believed that if you take a person unschooled in Windows and Linux and give the basics of each they would choose Linux. It is the mindset of Windows users trying Linux that it should be just like Windows. I know, because I was one. I insisted and argued that adding software was easier in Windows, but quickly learned that was due to my lack of knowledge.

    It will always be an uphill battle because of the users immersion in Windows in the work place. If one opens their mind and is willing to learn new ways of doing things Linux is a joy, and darn easy to use.

    ReplyDelete
  91. Flame fest of the month...

    ReplyDelete
  92. Hahahaha "intestinal fortitude". You zealots have this fascination with wanting to know someone's name online.

    Weirdo.


    Actually I'm a Windows programmer. I've been one since 1997. I'm currently developing ASP.NET applications in C#. I suppose that's another reason why I trust microsoft's figures regarding Linux market share.

    Yes obviously that does make me pretty weird.

    ReplyDelete
  93. Yes! Finally, someone agrees! Why don't these Windoze users understand? Linux is sooo much easier!

    For example, installing a program.

    God, sudo apt-get install blahblah, or tar zxvf blahblah.sh, cd /home/stallman , ls | grep blahblah, chmod blahblah 744, ./blahblah_GNU_wxuz23434_freedom_ease_of_use_wa23434.bin

    That is so much more intuitive than double-clicking an .exe!

    ReplyDelete
  94. @Tracyanne

    Nice try. You're a weirdo because you want to know everyone's real name who posts here.

    ReplyDelete
  95. So tracyanne what's your full real name, and what applications have you developed or worked on? Since you're in the industry it should be no problem providing links or perhaps even a resume.

    ReplyDelete
  96. @Tracyanne

    If you want to think I'm this Richard person, then I'm not going to waste my time telling you otherwise.

    You nasty, once-a-month-bleeding motherfucker.

    ReplyDelete
  97. This filthy twat Tracyanne thinks we're all "Richard"!

    ReplyDelete
  98. Here, I'll use a name instead of anonymous to make you feel better:

    TRACYANNE'S SNATCH

    "Help, wash me!"

    ReplyDelete
  99. Too many anonymi, but to the anonymous who talked about installing apps in Linux, ever here of Synaptic?

    Also to the children who keep throwing invectives and foul language, you are not adding anything to the discussion, please grow up.

    ReplyDelete
  100. Come on you Annonymous idiots, try harder. I'm sure you can sink lower than that. By the way, because you are Anonymous, your attempts at insults are rather meaningless.

    quote:what applications have you developed or worked on?

    www.ptonthenet.com
    www.healthypeople.com.au
    www.group314.com.au
    www.ptacademy.com.au
    www.cedarleaf.com.au

    That should give tham all a bit more exposure and a few more hits, and therefore better google rankings, thanks.


    Quote:For example, installing a program.

    God, sudo apt-get install blahblah, or tar zxvf blahblah.sh, cd /home/stallman , ls | grep blahblah, chmod blahblah 744, ./blahblah_GNU_wxuz23434_freedom_ease_of_use_wa23434.bin

    That is so much more intuitive than double-clicking an .exe!

    Well other than the fact that you have to actually find the right .exe or .msi on the web first, perhaps you could try what I do when installing applications on Linux.

    (This is on Ubuntu, it's a bit different on mandriva)
    System {menu] Administration [sub menu] Synaptic package Manager {click the left mouse button]

    wait for application to load. enter your password when prompted, press enter.

    left mouse click on the search button. Type in the name or short description of the application you want.

    select the application from the list, click ok for additional dependencies.

    repeat if you want to install several other applications.

    when done, left mouse click on the apply button. Confirm that these are the applications you want to install, when prompted.

    Go back to whatever it was you were doing while the package manager downloads and installs the applications.

    when the applications have finished installing, select the one you want from the main Applications menu. Enjoy.

    ReplyDelete
  101. quote:Also to the children who keep throwing invectives and foul language, you are not adding anything to the discussion, please grow up.

    Richard, don't stop them, the blokes I work with and I are having a good laugh. We're already taking bets on how hard they'll try.

    ReplyDelete
  102. This is one of the best blog posts i've read in a long time. 120% of the idiots that disagree with anything written here, are either ignorant or being PAID by Bill '2Horns' Gates.

    ReplyDelete
  103. Tracy you never get fuct if you post here.

    - Richard Stallman

    ReplyDelete
  104. and 99.9% of peoples complaints about Linux are Trivial. the .01% would be for Gaming. Not that gaming in linux is bad by any means. However there are a few Windows/CD games I would like to play in Linux (Without jumping through hoops).

    Bioshock, Call of Duty 4/5/6, Black and White 2, The Orange Box, Crysis etc. ALL of these games will play on Linux and play quite well.. but they're a royal pain to get running ..

    ReplyDelete
  105. This blog has been infiltrated by a group of frustrated trolls.

    ReplyDelete
  106. I especially love this one

    quote:You nasty,

    I am too.

    quote:once-a-month-bleeding

    I've been in IT for over 30 years, you work it out.

    motherfucker.

    I am too.

    ReplyDelete
  107. [Insert joke about individual's gender.]

    [Declare victory]

    ReplyDelete
  108. awesome, thanks a bunch for this article :)

    I hope it stays here cause Im gonna be redirecting alot of questions from people to here. I generally have the same views as you, but its nice to see someone lay it all out and explain it clearly rather than me explaining it slightly different over a 100 times to different people I set up with linux.

    Again, thanks :)

    ReplyDelete
  109. In stealth's case, an eighth complaint is needed:

    What the fuck are you doing in my house and why are you using my computer?

    ReplyDelete
  110. "They know how many of those computers are used with Windows because the Authentication key has to be validated..."

    Not quite -- or at least, it wasn't that way up through XP. Since problems with auth made it a huge pain, a lot of users with legal copies started using the universal code/key (also used by 'pirates') that *didn't* call home. MS came out with measures like WGA to thwart that approach, but workarounds always seemed to show up a few days later.

    Many people/techs also removed any "call home" services short of Windows Update as well... So if MS was judging % of *NIX users by the number of Windows computers that stopped calling home, they'd get fairly distorted results. :)

    ReplyDelete
  111. Ah good old Linux blogs, you can always count on anonymous trolls appear.

    Let the fun begin:



    “One of the first applications I wrote for Windows was an application capable of calling an external server, that was 1997 and the application was written in VB6, it was one of those horrible ActiveX applications.”

    Quick tracyanne, provide a link to the software with evidence you contributed in some way or form.


    “You are missing point. Microsoft can know how many Windows computers are sold, because they have binding agreements with the manufacturers to only supply hardware with Windows pre installed. They know how many of those computers are used with Windows because the Authentication key has to be validated by a microsoft server, and by use of simple aritmetic can work out how many aren't being used with Windows.”

    Sssshhhhh don’t tell anyone the crackers have a means of updating with a blacklisted key. That is why Microsoft is unable to ascertain an accurate account of legal Windows operating systems. It is a secret! Did you really expect software pirates to pass up one of the most widely used operating systems? By the way Windows is not limited to OEM. Enterprise licenses among others exist.

    “No the problem isn't a lack of coherent release environment.”
    [sarcasm] Yep because all kernels and software environments are the same![/ sarcasm]


    “Bioshock, Call of Duty 4/5/6, Black and White 2, The Orange Box, Crysis etc. ALL of these games will play on Linux and play quite well.. but they're a royal pain to get running ..”

    Hypocrisy meets cognitive dissonance with a distinct crunching sound. Speaking of sound, how is the driver?

    http://bugs.winehq.org/show_bug.cgi?id=10495

    Quick, get the Windows components!
    A lack of graphics!
    I hope your distro is supported!

    http://appdb.winehq.org/objectManager.php?sClass=version&iId=10429


    "quote:what applications have you developed or worked on?

    www.ptonthenet.com
    www.healthypeople.com.au
    www.group314.com.au
    www.ptacademy.com.au
    www.cedarleaf.com.au

    That should give tham all a bit more exposure and a few more hits, and therefore better google rankings, thanks."

    Where are you listed on any of those sites tracyanne?

    “That fact hasn't stopped Skype, or nVidea, or Cannon, or HP, or broadcomm or any of dozens of other proprietary software companies, who manage to have their application released via the Distribution release environment.”

    [sarcasm]Yep, all applications in question work without a single problem on every single Linux distro. [sarcasm] Oh wait, those are considered enterprise applications made for certain distros.

    ReplyDelete
  112. i agree with the sixth.

    i am using gnome on opensuse in order to socialize the use of linux in my workplace, but i find out that it is too much a hassle to click on the "lizard", look for the app in the "list". GAWD, i never found what i wanted.

    running terminal and start typing is much more efficient and fast.

    ReplyDelete
  113. @Richard

    Take a look back, and I think you'll see that your exalted Tracyann is the one who began with the invective, with her "dickhead" comment.

    When she initiates it, it is somehow more mature?

    ReplyDelete
  114. Anonymous said...

    @Tracyanne

    I wouldn't tout those language skills just yet if I were you. You may want to learn about the wonders of capital letters and writing something beyond short, comparative sentence fragments.

    Cheers.
    ======================

    @Tracyanne
    I guess you knew he had lost it when he trotted this one out.

    @Stealth
    Just consider the source.

    @Ryan
    Consider that those who most zealously attack Linux consider Linux to be consequential enough to actively and continuously press their case. So important, in fact, that they break away from game playing to do it.
    For them, I recommend:
    www.entropiauniverse.com
    And may they enjoy Windows for the rest of their lives. They are free to do so.

    ReplyDelete
  115. Xyzzy said...

    "They know how many of those computers are used with Windows because the Authentication key has to be validated..."

    Not quite -- or at least, it wasn't that way up through XP. .........but workarounds always seemed to show up a few days later.

    Many people/techs also removed any "call home" services ..............they'd get fairly distorted results. :)

    If you read the article I linked to, you will see that Microsoft have figures for both validated (Legal authenticated) an unvalidated (Pirated) Windows, as well as figures for MacOSX and Linux.

    WanderFreeForever said

    “You are missing point............and by use of simple aritmetic can work out how many aren't being used with Windows.”

    Sssshhhhh don’t tell anyone the crackers have a means of updating with a blacklisted key. Th............................ among others exist.

    see comment above.

    WanderFreeForever said

    “No the problem isn't a lack of coherent release environment.”
    [sarcasm] Yep because all kernels and software environments are the same![/ sarcasm]

    That actually has no bearing on it at all. All thet is needed is for the supplier of the software to make the source available to the Distributor, and the software can easily be packaged for that Distribution. That is exactly how every FOSS application is distributed in every Linux Distribution, and how Mandriva, for example manages to distribute Priproietary software in their Powerpack edition.


    WanderFreeForever said

    "quote:what applications have you developed or worked on?..................
    Where are you listed on any of those sites tracyanne?

    I'm not, the Question was "what applications have you developed or worked on?" I answered the question. I didn't say I could prove it.


    WanderFreeForever said

    “That fact hasn't stopped Skype, or nVidea, or Cannon, or HP, or broadcomm or a...........................[sarcasm]Yep, all applications in question work without a single problem on every single Linux distro. [sarcasm] Oh wait, those are considered enterprise applications made for certain distros.

    Maybe you should try using a Linux distribution that those comapnies have taken the trouble to support, just a thought.

    On the other hand if those proprietary companies chose to work with the distributors in the same way that FOSS developers do, there wouldn't be a problem on even the nichest of niche distributions.

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  116. Edward LinuxhandsJuly 13, 2009 at 11:06 PM

    Why are all you people wasting your time trying to convince each other that you're right? Get off the damn computer and get a life. These flamefests achieve nothing.

    ReplyDelete
  117. How did they determine the amount of users to divide into?

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  118. Why are all you people wasting your time trying to convince each other that you're right? Get off the damn computer and get a life.

    Teh ironing is delicious.

    ReplyDelete
  119. L0g1n said...

    i agree with the sixth.

    i am using gnome on opensuse in order to socialize the use of linux in my workplace, but i find out that it is too much a hassle to click on the "lizard", look for the app in the "list". GAWD, i never found what i wanted.

    running terminal and start typing is much more efficient and fast.

    I can respect that you prefer Gnome to KDE. Perhaps the developers will add a feature I like in KDE (also using opensuse), the ability to do a search of things in the startup menus. I don't use it much but on occasion it substitutes as portion of my memory.

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  120. Ken Holmes said.

    @Ryan
    Consider that those who most zealously attack Linux consider Linux to be consequential enough to actively and continuously press their case. So important, in fact, that they break away from game playing to do it.


    That's the really amusing thing about it. The amount of time and effort those who so zealously attack Linux put into those attacks, espeially when one considers how inconsequential they claim Linux to be.

    One has to wonder just who they are trying to convince and why it's so important to them to do so. because if Linux really is as inconsequential as they claim, then the effort is wasted, and they could be better employed playing their games.

    Perhaps they are afraid that Microsoft is right, and Linux is far from inconsequential, and they believe the FUD that this will cause Microsoft to disappear, and they fear losing their toys.

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  121. “If you read the article I linked to, you will see that Microsoft have figures for both validated (Legal authenticated) an unvalidated (Pirated) Windows, as well as figures for MacOSX and Linux.”

    WWWWOOOOOOSSHHHHH!!! Did you hear that sound? That was the point of my post being missed! The pirates have a means of fooling a validation check, how is Microsoft able to accurately determine which windows operating system is valid or not? We have been presented skewered statics. Heck the loaders for Windows Vista can easily do this. Especially when you can choose not to or uninstall install the specific update that checks for such. As for windows update, a tracking .gif more than easily bypassed.

    “That actually has no bearing on it at all. All thet is needed is for the supplier of the software to make the source available to the Distributor, and the software can easily be packaged for that Distribution. That is exactly how every FOSS application is distributed in every Linux Distribution, and how Mandriva, for example manages to distribute Priproietary software in their Powerpack edition.”

    Riigghhhhttt, you were saying about kernel changes not mattering…

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=415793

    http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/slackware-14/running-vmware-server-on-slack12-w-2.6.23.1-kernel-603928/

    http://bugs.gentoo.org/231628

    There is a shatter point to this post. Who is the packer and is said packer capable of managing dependencies and every aspect of every packager. Heck try compiling vmware tools for Linux from source, fun times for all! A pity that package is either .rpm (not supported widely) or .tar.gz and absent from various repositories. Repositories do not contain all of the software available or needed for that matter.

    “Maybe you should try using a Linux distribution that those comapnies have taken the trouble to support, just a thought.

    On the other hand if those proprietary companies chose to work with the distributors in the same way that FOSS developers do, there wouldn't be a problem on even the nichest of niche distributions.”

    Which one and why are we assuming companies are decentralized? The cathedral and the bazaar is not a common business practice. For that matter, the resources required (time, money and manpower) to code for and support every single package manager and ever single distro is insane. All for what return?


    “That's the really amusing thing about it. The amount of time and effort those who so zealously attack Linux put into those attacks, espeially when one considers how inconsequential they claim Linux to be.”


    Effort? I speak from experience. Opposition is the best motivation, silence the critics if you can. They can wait and see.

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  122. WanderFreeForever said

    WWWWOOOOOOSSHHHHH!!! Did you hear that sound? That was the point of my post being missed! The pirates have a means of fooling a validation check, how is Microsoft able to accurately determine which windows operating system is valid or not? We have been presented skewered statics. Heck the loaders for Windows Vista can easily do this. Especially when you can choose not to or uninstall install the specific update that checks for such. As for windows update, a tracking .gif more than easily bypassed

    Now that you will have to ask microsoft.

    However we are talking about Windows, so I'd guess they have their ways.

    It's interesting the amount of effort that is now being put into disproving Microsoft's high figure for Linux. We now have the Microsoft zealots calling their God a liar.


    WanderFreeForever said
    Riigghhhhttt, you were saying about kernel changes not mattering…

    http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=415793

    http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/slackware-14/running-vmware-server-on-slack12-w-2.6.23.1-kernel-603928/

    http://bugs.gentoo.org/231628

    Loks to me that they are Distributions that don't have a build of VMware in their repositories.

    As i said, if the Proprietary developers worked in with the distributors, there would be no problem. You are pointing problems that I said would exist, exactly because the Proprietary companies don't work in with the Linux distributions.

    I've never had a problem with VMWare on Mandriva Powerpack, simply because they work in with Mandriva.


    WanderfreeForever said

    Effort? I speak from experience. Opposition is the best motivation, silence the critics if you can. They can wait and see.

    Opposition to what? If Linux is truly inconsequential, there is nothing to oppose. Given that Linux is allegedly inconsequential, I can't see why anyone would bother opposing it. It seems time wasted to me.

    ReplyDelete
  123. This article is whining about the ignorance of the stupid windows users, overseeing the (much bigger) ignorance of (large parts of) the FOSS community. Actually it's very easy: If you want adoption on a larger scale, if you want to win the desktop, you need to make things just work. You need to describe solutions to people without using the command line. If you are not willing to do this, for ideological or whatever reasons you will loose.

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  124. Of course anyone who can't get VMWare to wotk on thier favourite distribution of linux, could always use VirtualBox, the GNU GPL version comes prepackaged with every Linux Distribution I've tried, and the version with Proprietary extensions has installed without fuss on every Distribution of Linux I've tried it on.

    Another thing I find pretty funny here. I'm a windows programmer, I've been one since 1997, I earn my living programming on Windows, I had never even heard of Linux before 2000 and I seem to have much more success than even people who claim to be Long time Linux users.

    Linux just works for me, and Ive tried Ubuntu, of course, and the various iterations like Mint, Mandriva, and PCLinuxOS, even Debian, and fedora and SuSE, and they all work for me, in their full 3D glory on almost all the hardware I've tried it on, and I can see why it doesn't on the hardware it doesn't work on, and I can't see that that's the fault of linux or it's developers.

    Also I've never tried to shoehorn Windows programs onto linux, I jsut use what's supplied, and it all just works for me. What all these complaints about Linux look like to me is nit picking by people who want Linux to be something other than Linux.

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  125. There is ONE thing I think that Linux and Unix need to work on. "Hide the verbose start and shutdown message's". I have been in the Unix/Linux world for over 15 years. The first time I booted a Unix machine, it scared the HELL out of me when I got scrolling screen messages about this device at this 'hex address' is starting up dirty...etc. or starting up doing a 'fsck' at this address on this device, bad block will fix. I thought broke the damn thing...

    ReplyDelete
  126. @tracyanne

    "I've never had a problem with VMWare on Mandriva Powerpack, simply because they work in with Mandriva."

    I had, but that's not important.

    VMWare is just one software house which works with one distribution. What about thousands of smaller applications and smaller software houses which don't have time nor money to deal with distro packagers?

    VMWare is a high profile application and it's in Mandriva's interest to have it packaged and working properly. Obviously, they will not have interest, funds or time to keep every small application in their repos, packaged and updated.

    So, where does it leave a small software producer? It has to beg a large distributions to put his software in their repository, which makes his business dependent on the will and the resources of the distro maker. Basically, this makes it almost impossible for a small software companies to release commercial software for Linux. Centralized distribution, whiny community and the sense of entitlement makes small software business run away from Linux.

    For example, just this year I bought a few small utilities for Windows, about 20-60 USD each. None of these developers had anything to do with Microsoft, or any other big company. They are just a single developer, or small (2-3) developers companies. I heard about their software somewhere, tried and bought. This kind of business is impossible on any Linux distro.

    "I jsut use what's supplied,"
    Yes, that is part of the problem. Everybody uses what is supplied. Linux thought police says it's good and there is no reason to try anything else. All the goods are rationalized and centrally distributed. Every little advantage is glorified, and all the disadvantages are belittled in the name of Freedom. Yes... it reminds me of a communist country where I used to live.

    "Linux to be something other than Linux"

    No, I don't think anybody wants Linux to be something other. Everybody already knows what Linux is.

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  127. I know it is hard to put the OS arguments to the side, but I think it can be summed up like this. "I don't use a screwdriver to hammer in a nail, and I don't use a hammer to drive in a screw." In other words, each OS can be viewed with a strength or weakness, but each has a specialized tool to perform any given task.

    The Unix/Linux world point of view, and rightly so can point out to any Windows user to that "Brand New, Never Been Done Before, Technology" Windows offers, Unix did twenty years ago. Active Directory? Can you spell YP. Windows Shares, can you spell NFS. Bit Locker, can you spell 'Volume Encryption'. Just a rant.....

    ReplyDelete
  128. Tom said...

    "I jsut use what's supplied,"
    Yes, that is part of the problem. Everybody uses what is supplied. Linux thought police says it's good and there is no reason to try anything else. All the goods are rationalized and centrally distributed. Every little advantage is glorified, and all the disadvantages are belittled in the name of Freedom. Yes... it reminds me of a communist country where I used to live.

    You left out the where i wrote "Also I've never tried to shoehorn Windows programs onto linux..."

    the full context should read "Also I've never tried to shoehorn Windows programs onto linux, I jsut use what's supplied, " meaning I use programs written for Linux, instead of trying make something written for Windows work. I try to do it the Linux way, instead of trying to make the Windows way fit Linux. It bwould be just as silly of me to try to do things on Window the way you can do them on linux, that would lead to frustration.

    Tom said...

    VMWare is a high profile application and it's in Mandriva's interest to have it packaged and working properly. Obviously, they will not have interest, funds or time to keep every small application in their repos, packaged and updated.

    You missed the point. Mandriva work with VMWare, because it is in their best interest. They don't have to do that with FOSS developers who work in with mandriva, and all the other distributions, by supplying the applications in a generic way that can be consumed by all of the distributions.

    VMWare, and other proprietary applicatiosn developers only work in with Microsoft, by supplying the applications in a way that can be consumed by Windows. If they really wanted to, they could work in with the linux Distributions by supplying their applications in a similar generic way, as the FOSS developers do, so that all Linux Distributions can consume it.

    But they don't. The issue with Prorietary applications like VMWare not working properly on all, or even most linux Distributions is because of a choice VMWare, and other proprietary developers, make. Not because of some issue with the Linux kernel or different builds done by the Distributors.

    Almost all FOSS development teams are small, just like the small prioetary development shops. and yet FOSS developers can and do supply thier applications in a manner that can, and is, packaged for the distribution, no matter how small and niche it might be. there is no reason at all why proprietary development shops, big or small could not do the same. They simply choose not to do so. All it entails is the let the Distribution packagers create the final product. It would save the Proprietary development shops money, as they wouldn't have to spend the time packaging, and usually badly, as we've seen so many times (as it's rare that such in house packaging works on more tah a very few Distributions).

    ReplyDelete
  129. Interesting article and pretty spot-on.

    But your site has some annoying script that keeps reloading the page every 3 seconds.

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  130. Wow. Didn't expect 130+ comments to pop up in three days. I guess I should have expected this. After all, nobody can talk about Linux on the Internet without starting a flame war.

    I'm fine with everybody posting what they feel, but really, let's try to keep the name-calling and personal insults to a minimum, folks. I'm not gonna go deleting any comments because I don't think I should censor anyone for the sake of a clean site. But seriously, let's just try to stay on topic.

    @lefty.crupps - Thanks. I don't experience this refreshing problem that you describe. What OS/browser are you using? I can maybe take it up with Google if there's a real problem. I have noticed (and so have others) that the comment box doesn't work right if you're not logged in.

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  131. If Google launch it Chrome Os.. it will be win win for all Linux comunity.!!

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  132. I'd consider the "Linux doesn't support my hardware" as an issue that Vista would be facing even worse than Linux. Linux supports more hardware out of box than Vista currently does. It supports most of the same mainline stuff XP supports. The stuff that ISN'T supported is typically something that was something that won't be supported in Vista/Windows7 going forward, or wasn't as good as the "more expensive" stuff- WinPrinters would be a good example of this. While the prospective new user doesn't care about that fact, it's because they don't know they SHOULD care about it. Much of the stuff that "doesn't work" had planned obsolesence designed into the device (i.e. It wasn't envisioned to last past Win 2k/XP...ever...)- and they should be concerned about someone selling them something like that.

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  133. OM! My pS/2 keyboard no longer work! My Serial mouse no longer work! bla$phemy DRM infected chotchot!

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  134. "If Google launch it Chrome Os.. it will be win win for all Linux comunity.!!"

    Ha. Why DOn't you view this (no porn and safe) comic strip below?

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/25pics/3713572643/

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/25pics/3714385858/

    ReplyDelete
  135. People may actually like to try Linux more if there weren't zealots posting BS like "OO win7 is ALMOST as good as Ubuntu"

    Or "Win7 is just repackaged vista which is repackaged XP whioch is repackaged win2090, which is repackaed windows95 which is repackaged DOS"

    Then what is Ubuntu 9.04 repackaged or is it truly unique mega feature compared to previous?

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  136. Sassinak (that's me) says:

    Thanks for the article, it'll help me solve problems with OS conversion. To bad there are so many trolls involved in any post about linux or MS.
    I have been using the toy car vs lego kit analogy to compare OS: Why build your own car from scratch when you can just buy one prebuilt ? Answer: Because I can fix it myself; then make it into a helicopter, that's why. I don't mind the extra work, I rather enjoy it.

    Lego blocks just isn't for everyone, just like we can't all be doctors, someone has to do the job of sueing the doctor, and someone has to serve the coffee.
    As a tech, Windows provides me with plenty of work, and desperate, frightened users pay well.

    ReplyDelete
  137. Anonymous said...
    Or "Win7 is just repackaged vista which is repackaged XP whioch is repackaged win2090, which is repackaed windows95 which is repackaged DOS"

    Then what is Ubuntu 9.04 repackaged or is it truly unique mega feature compared to previous?

    -----

    The current Linux kernel contains very, very little of the original code that Linus Torvalds wrote. The current Windows kernel still contains the old DOS code. It is the backbone of Windows.

    Ubuntu 9.04 contains the latest kernel (and I got an update to that yesterday, as a matter of fact) with the latest security and feature updates.

    Over 2000 lines of code in the Linux kernel get added, changed, or removed daily. The software actually changes.

    Windows Vista is Windows XP with a new driver model that makes former drivers invalid and unusable. Whether this was intentional or not I have no proof of, and I'll leave it to others to find any evidence, since that's neither here nor there. Also, whether the new driver model is better or worse or offers no change than the previous version is something I have no knowledge of. I do not program drivers. I program for the web and do some minor desktop coding, which is a different world entirely.

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  138. Problem is, everyone capable of turning the toy car into a helicopter expects to get paid for the effort, and the analogy turns into corporations using Linux as a base for proprietary platforms, like Android, ChromeOS, WebOS, and Tivo. None of these provide any benefit whatsoever to the FOSS vision of a free desktop. You guys can claim victory with increased usage, but such is hollow because these companies aren't furthering the "free and open" ideals that are irrecoverably tied to the platform.

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  139. [DOS] is the backbone of Windows.

    No it isn't. DOS has nothing to do with modern Windows. NT is a portable kernel written from scratch between 1989-1993. Microsoft went to great lengths to avoid unintentional ties to older systems by developing NT entirely on non-x86 systems. Linux is closer to Minix than NT is to DOS, and we all know Linux isn't really at all close to Minix anymore.

    The software actually changes.

    Yeah, arbitrarily, which is one of the lasting problems with the system. This metric is like saying your support staff is better because they close more tickets. The rest of us wonder why so many tickets are generated.

    Windows Vista is Windows XP with a new driver model that makes former drivers invalid and unusable.

    Windows Vista is an all around incremental upgrade over XP, which itself was an incremental upgrade over Windows 2000, which was an (admittedly big) incremental upgrade over Windows NT 4, and so on. What's upgraded with Vista isn't as apparent without newer hardware as much of it concerns stuff that wasn't around during XP's design phase, like >2 GB RAM, solid state storage, and excess processor power.

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  140. @tracyanne

    and yet FOSS developers can and do supply thier applications in a manner that can, and is, packaged for the distribution, no matter how small and niche it might be.

    Hm. You could look here:
    http://modeemi.fi/~tuomov/ion/news/Down_with_the_distros.html
    The guy wrote Ion window manager. Quote:
    "distributions – the middle-men, the equivalents of the big record companies in FOSSphere – that have become far too powerful, wielding de facto central control over easily installable software."

    Just a small example, last time I looked at Mandriva (2008, or so) it was quite hard to install Gnome Do. It was not in the repository. Why? Perhaps there's an agenda against Mono, perhaps somebody didn't like it, doesn't matter. The point is that I was unable to try and use something that seemed interesting and useful. I never had a problem like this on Windows, and I'd perhaps even buy it.

    the full context should read "Also I've never tried to shoehorn Windows programs onto linux, I jsut use what's supplied .... I try to do it the Linux way

    Yes, but the Windows software is not what I'm talking about. It's the Linux software and the 'Linux way', which is, as I said, centralized distribution which, basically, puts developers in inferior position.

    would save the Proprietary development shops money, as they wouldn't have to spend the time packaging, and usually badly, as we've seen so many times

    Strangely, proprietary shops don't have a problem creating installation packages for Windows, which work both on 10 years old versions, and on Windows versions 10 years newer than the original software.

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  141. Tom,

    Great post. Allow me to preemptively summarize the party counter attack.

    Mandriva? You claim to be some sort of Linux expert (when you really didn't) and you expect us to believe you'd choose an inferior distro like Mandriva? Stop being an idiot and use something superior like Ubuntu, Kubuntu, PCLinuxOS, SuSE, Fedora, Mint, Arch, or Vector. Only after trying ALL of the above do you deserve to criticize even the tiniest flaw.

    You left Linux because you couldn't figure out how to install GNOME Do? Wah wah wah. Baby without a bottle. You don't have the FORTITUDE to solve problems you wintard moron. Besides, GNOME Do is for idiots. Real men launch stuff directly from the terminal.

    Distros have flawless vision in providing software, like all single party systems (well, only in FOSS land). They left GNOME Do out because it sucks and is evil. SURELY with 21,392 packages there's SOMETHING you can try. Until you've tried each of the 21,392 software options plus stackable combinations, you have no right to criticize any aspect of Linux. Oh, when you're done trying the 31,392 options in Ubuntu, you have to do the same thing in Mint, Slackware, Debian, etc.

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  142. Well, no, actually, not everyone that can turn a car into a helicopter (so to speak) expects to get paid for it: that't the beauty of linux and FOSS. They (said engineers) first do it because it suits their need to do so. Such transformation of software is often a group effort too. Another analogy: if ten of us each work a hour a day on a project, at the end of the day we benefit of 10 hours work, and I mean BENEFIT, because we started this project to suit needs that couldn't be met elsewhere (or even just for fun).
    Sharing in the virtual world just isn't the same as in the physical one. If I share my physical beer with you, I'm left with half a beer: I expect a kiss!

    Not so in the virtual world: I copy my beer with you: we both have a beer, I share it with ten other geeks, we have a party. (wait, some other guy did that with wine, they cruxified him.)

    I remember thinking : "This OS is free ? What's the catch ?" I get that from potential converts, and it's hard to explain to them. Free is suspicious, sharing is illegal. I'm now thinking: Get Linux on the shelves, and charge for it, and a good price too; people will take it seriously then. Just remember to keep it open source.

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  143. Engineers can't deliver a product. The car will fly, but only in the engineering-type scenarios they imagined. The helicar probably works only with 2 miles of runway and can remain airborne for a few minutes. In other words, it's completely useless to the world at large, though the engineers consider it a success and have "scratched their itch." What's missing are the marketers (who help design the specifications), QA, and general operational structure. FOSS has no provisions for this because the philosophy incorrectly assumes the programmer is intellectually and morally superior to all others and, thus, the rest are unneeded.

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  144. Allow me to preemptively summarize the party counter attack.

    Nice job... allow me to preemptively summarize my response :)
    expect us to believe you'd choose an inferior distro like Mandriva?

    Mandriva is actually the only distro that always worked for me, much better than over-hyped community darling Ubuntu.

    don't have the FORTITUDE to solve problems
    It's nice and self gratifying to solve the problems... but, sometimes I just want to see the movie, and hear the sound.

    Real men launch stuff directly from the terminal.
    Actually I prefer screen window mgr. It makes me extra 1337, and it's doubleplusgood to have uname-a in multiple screens :)

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  145. Ouch! Now I know I've hit a nerve: "...assumes the programmer is intellectually and morally superior..." What's that all about? Why can't they just be better..."geeks" ?

    "Engineers can't deliver a product." Why not? Who will ? If the original programmer only gets it halfway working, then the other half will be taken up by all the other guys interested in the project: having acces to the source code, they can improve it, correct it...test it under many, many conditions and finish it. It won't be perfect ? what is ? but it will grow, adapt, reproduce, it will be alive, in a way, and work for me AND for Joe. Did I mention "adapt" ?

    "...only in the engineering-type scenarios they imagined..." <---closed source = hothouse type flowers.
    Open-source = "bio-diversity" and natural adaptation at its best: tested on many, many different platforms, hardware, conditions, strange needs of strange nerds, (and of their normal moms).

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  146. What's that all about? Why can't they just be better..."geeks" ?

    Browse Slashdot (or any other social venue frequented by the FOSS crowd) for a while and notice all the snide comments toward marketers, "PHBs", and pretty much anybody who works in a corporate capacity.

    Why not? Who will ?

    Already explained that: a team of people with different skills working together. The core FOSS philosophies focus only on the individual programmer. The best it can do is involve other like minded programmers. Programmers don't know what the end user wants, and teaming alike-thinking programmers doesn't create anything new.

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  147. Desktop Linux is a big config file with a half-arsed GUI. It's all bits and pieces, stuck together with wrapperclasses. X, KDE, Gnome, audio, IR (lirc anyone?).

    There's no roadmap, no goalposts, no vision. It compiles, let's ship it defective and call it superiorsz!

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  148. "a team of people with different skills",
    "focus only on the individual programmer",
    "teaming alike-thinking programmers doesn't create anything new."

    Sorry, what?

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  149. Well for one, not all projects can be completed without consulting a non-programmer which is probably why there aren't any decent accounting or tax programs for Linux. You have to remember, when Stallman came up with his vision for free software it was feasible for small teams of programmers to crank stuff out. Now, everything is much more complex and needs input from non-programmers. This is where his vision breaks down.

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  150. Here, fixed this for you:
    Desktop Windows is a big registry cluster-f**k with a half-arsed GUI. It's all bits and pieces, stuck together with little else than PR. NT, AV, DRM, Genuine Advantage, (Black Tuesday anyone?).

    There's no ethics, no ingenuity, no security . It compiles, let's ship it defective and always late, and call it superiorsz!

    ReplyDelete
  151. I love when this topic comes up on random blogs...I like the fact that people are so passionate about whatever piece of software they use ... it is nice to see an interest ... but, there are come flaws in the comparisons that come up often, that need clarification to properly discuss the topic.

    Linux is not a desktop environment or operating system. In fact, early Windows was emtirely based on pre-existing *nix kernels and software (BSD) which are all in the same genus as linux. Linux is the kernel, the abstraction layer between the operating system and the hardware (or more-so the assembly code that interacts with the hardware). Don't compare Windows with linux ... I think this is where the problem arises when this debate reers its ugly head.

    Gnu is the operating system, linux is the kernel. Windows is the operating system, NT is the kernel.

    Windows XP would be the bundle, Ubuntu would be the bundle.

    If we want to compare the faults and tolerances of each, compare them on those levels.

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  152. PART TWO ;-)

    I love when this topic comes up on random blogs...I like the fact that people are so passionate about whatever piece of software they use ... it is nice to see an interest ... but, there are come flaws in the comparisons that come up often, that need clarification to properly discuss the topic.

    Linux is not a desktop environment or operating system. In fact, early Windows was emtirely based on pre-existing *nix kernels and software (BSD) which are all in the same genus as linux. Linux is the kernel, the abstraction layer between the operating system and the hardware (or more-so the assembly code that interacts with the hardware). Don't compare Windows with linux ... I think this is where the problem arises when this debate reers its ugly head.

    Gnu is the operating system, linux is the kernel. Windows is the operating system, NT is the kernel.

    Windows XP would be the bundle, Ubuntu would be the bundle.

    If we want to compare the faults and tolerances of each, compare them on those levels.

    The primary disadvantage that arises between the two is driver support. This isn't because linux can't communicate with various hardware, it is because the source code for the support of that hardware is proprietary and not open for adaption into the linux kernel.

    For example, NVIDIA pre-compiles drivers for their video cards. Until recently they didn't even have a linux flavor, it was solely NT. The linux project within NVIDIA is second-thought -- as well it should be, since, NVIDIA gets a nice kick-back from Windows for development on their platform. NVIDIA is in the buisness to make money ... and you can't blame them.

    Linux has grown up with a major disadvantage ... it would be like giving someone all the parts to an engine, and not giving them the schematics to put it together. Windows has the schematics...linux needs to reverse endgineer the entire engine from sratch.

    So if we want to compare Windows, compare it to Gnu or Ubuntu or Fedora, not to linux.

    On that note, Windows purely as an operating system, or desktop environment (which BTW was blatently copied from the Xorg community) is indeed very good for its intended audience ... casual home desktop users. Power users often have to download various drivers from NVIDIA or other sources to enable high-end features on their hardware in Windows (as in Gnu/Linux).

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  153. and finally part three -- yeah I am a wind bag



    The problems arising today with Windows is common for any organization that had/has a monopoly. They loose touch with their intended audience. Windows is trying to delve into the open-source movement by incorporating OS-level applications onto a kernel which just won't support them. The entire NT kernel needs a major reworking for Windows to survive in its form over the next 10 years, even my Windows developers would tell you that. The development hasn't gone into infrastructure, rather into cosmetics ... and Vista was the first attempt to ameliorate that ... which is way, a lot of casual desktop users hate Vista. But Windows is realizing that it has to but money into building its infrastructure if it wants to support future development and there will be growing pains.

    The point being, I am a big Gnu/Linux user ... I have nothing against Windows as a software company making a profit, it is the American way. My problem arises when we misrepresent any community by trying to compare it unfairly.

    Ask any graphics designer what OS they use, and you will get a resounding Mac-attack ... why, again, intended audience.

    Vista caused a lot of distaste in Windows users, both casual and power. I think it is great that this caused people to look at Gnu/Linux and gave birth to variants such as Ubuntu. But ... it ain't linux that is the problem ...

    And to the anonymous who said linux is a big config file with half-arsed GUI ... um there is no GUI in linux ... and X being a wrapper, laughable ... you are comparing very different aspects of an operating system you know nothing about to emphasize a point no one is disbuting. Windows is the OS for casual desktop users right now, no ifs and or buts....however, if they keep down the roadmap they set out with Vista, well ... I think the future is wide-open for the likes of Mac and Ubuntu to gulp up a larger audience.

    More competition leads to better products for consumers ... and Windows now ain't the only kid on the block ... it might be the biggest kid, and may even be armed with a sawed off shotgun ... but at least now Gnu has moved into the neighborhood, albeit equipped only with a baseball bat right now.

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  154. early Windows was emtirely based on pre-existing *nix kernels and software (BSD)

    No, XENIX, a product totally unrelated to Windows, was based on UNIX, and it was System 7, not BSD, elements of which were added later.

    If we want to compare the faults and tolerances of each, compare them on those levels.

    If you guys want to compare anything at all, at least get your basic facts right.

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  155. Gnu is the operating system, linux is the kernel.

    Wow, people actually do swallow Stallman's rhetoric.

    there is no GUI in linux

    I don't get this intentional omission. Linux is just a kernel. Then we drag in GNU talking about a system, but we leave behind X, even though it's a much more complicated and critical component to a desktop operating system than some easily replaceable shell utilities and C libraries.

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  156. Where I work we just replaced my old, slow Windows XP laptop with a NEW slow Windows XP laptop (latest and greatest!). That is not the point I'm trying to make, however... It took FOUR HOURS to migrate my data and settings from the old laptop to the new one.

    Why did it take FOUR HOURS? Because in Windows, your files and settings are stored all over the damned place BY DESIGN and BY DEFAULT. It isn't enough to just store your files in "My Documents". No no no... You see, you've got VPN certificates stored in Program Files, Microsoft Office stores some settings and data there, and many, many other programs do the same.

    What kind of crappy OS is this that it allows USER-RUN APPLICATIONS to write data wherever they please on the OS?!?

    If I had a Linux laptop and needed to migrate my settings and data to a new Linux laptop the operation would take a tenth of the amount of time and would've been a simple copy operation: "cp -R /home/myuser /mnt/home/myuser" (where /mnt/home is the new laptop's home partition mounted over the network).

    As I sit here typing this there are 11 non-Windows (as in, not the volume control) system tray icons on my BRAND NEW LAPTOP. Why so many? Apparently I need FOUR security-related background applications to make up for the security shortcomings of Windows, an extra icon to remind me that Outlook is running (why?!?), and far too many "I want automatic updates too!" updater programs.

    Surely every one of these little background processes is important or my (large Fortune 50) employer wouldn't have put them there. Also, just as surely, every one of these little applications is writing to the registry on a regular basis (making the system slower and slower over time as it gets harder for the OS to parse), eating up RAM unncessarily, and regularly consuming CPU cycles when I don't need them to be.

    Quite franky, the Windows ecosystem is a mess. No matter what issues you have with Linux they don't come anywhere NEAR the absolute garbage that is the average "Windows desktop experience".

    "I can't play DVDs without having to install an extra package!" "My old applications aren't available!" Blah blah blah blah... They're all pretty much the same complaint: "This isn't what I'm used to and I think learning new things is something people shouldn't have to do when it comes to computers!"

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  157. You see, you've got VPN certificates stored in Program Files, Microsoft Office stores some settings and data there, and many, many other programs do the same.

    If you went with current technology (Vista), you wouldn't have this problem. What settings does Office store in Program Files? Please don't tell me we're talking about Office 97 or something.

    What kind of crappy OS is this that it allows USER-RUN APPLICATIONS to write data wherever they please on the OS?!?

    What kind of person who understands the above and wishes it otherwise does not establish restricted users?

    If I had a Linux laptop and needed to migrate my settings and data to a new Linux laptop the operation would take a tenth of the amount of time and would've been a simple copy operation: "cp -R /home/myuser /mnt/home/myuser" (where /mnt/home is the new laptop's home partition mounted over the network).

    This works in Windows, too. It even copies the user's registry hive. Wow!

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  158. Until recently they didn't even have a linux flavor

    Define "recently". NVIDIA supported Linux when Windows 9x was current.

    NVIDIA gets a nice kick-back from Windows

    Proof please.

    So if we want to compare Windows, compare it to Gnu or Ubuntu or Fedora, not to linux.

    The various Linux distributions all share the same set of problems and it's too cumbersome repeatedly listing them all by name so "Linux" is shorthand. Everyone seems to understand this except for semantics nazis. When someone says, "Let's take the car," but it's more like a small truck, do you lecture them for half an hour about the difference between vehicle types? Besides, if just we picked one to trash, like Ubuntu, everyone would be like, "Well try Fedora/SuSE/Arch/Mint/Slackware/Debian/PCLOS/Puppy/KNOPPIX/DamnSmall instead!"

    was blatently copied from the Xorg community

    How is this possible? Windows predates xorg by 20 years. Tell me you knew this. Please tell me you knew this.

    They loose touch with their intended audience.

    Which is why everybody has nothing but praises for Windows 7.

    Vista caused a lot of distaste in Windows users, both casual and power.

    Which was largely imagined. The difference between now and previous anti-Microsoft campaigns is that the anti-Microsoft media spilled over into the mainstream. Apple exploited this, which was what really legitimized the whole thing.

    I just sold a Vista laptop to a die hard Mac fan. I mean this guy doesn't even understand the concept of a second mouse button--he's been using the things since the 80s. He swore up and down that he'd never take a Vista computer. He was only convinced when I informed him the software he required was Windows only and that the 2 GB RAM 160 GB hard drive laptop could be had for less than $400, as opposed to $1200+ for a comparative Macbook. His initial reaction upon using it? "This thing is pretty sweet!" He was like a kid in a candy store, and this is Vista, the universally hated OS. Imagine the holdouts' reaction to 7 when it's released!

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  159. Aside, this JavaScript text box of Blogger's fucking sucks. Half the time it chews posts with "Error: cannot be processed".

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  160. Hey mr "where I work", why don't you explain to the business where you work how Linux desktop can make the company more productive then? O that's right IT CANT.

    You are telling me, some hobby OS built by a few, is better than a billion dollar corporation that hires the best of the best programmers? And you want to complain about a few trayicons that can be hidden by a few clicks? Eating up precious CPU and ram? 4gig of ram is less than 50bucks, and CPU speed is ridiculous fast nowadays. What the hell are you running a pentium 1?

    I agree, this javascript textbox sucks.

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  161. I read "Linux is great for gaming" and laughed my butt off. O really now! No kidding? Tuxracer is the bombz!

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  162. Syd (usefedora@yahoo.com)July 14, 2009 at 5:22 PM

    I think it is great to see heated debate and ramblings over operating systems. I don't like the innuendo and purposeful hatre. It is one thing to disagree ... one thing to correct anothers misquotes or errors, but you lose all credibility in your correctness when you follow it up by: "Please 'Mr Where I work' tell me you knew that." Just state the facts, move on, and let the reader make their own opinion.

    This is why Baskin-Robins has 31 flavors ... find something you like ... stick with it ... if you are going to attack others, at least don't sign in anonymous or if you require someone elses credentials, provide yours...this is the internet, the largest waste of space and incorrect information anywhere on the planet ... but also the best resource and largest wealth of information ... it is, like an OS, what you make of it ... so just play nicely ...

    anyone wants to chat about the shortcomings of the linux or windows or mac, feel free to email me, usefedora@yahoo.com --- I love to hear (read) myself talk (write) ;-)

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  163. @Ryan

    Modern Windows is not built on "DOS code".

    Thanks for playing.

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  164. Hey, Syd, I disagree. I much prefer purposeful hate over purposeful misinformation. I mean, Windows copied xorg? NT is based on DOS? NVIDIA's Linux drivers are brand new? This stuff is ludicrously uninformed and deserves ridicule. Hey, I have an idea, if you don't know what you're talking about and don't insults thrown your way, don't post nonsense!

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  165. Hey Zealots, as someone else just pointed out on LH, YOU ARE ALL BREAKING THE LAW WHEN YOU PLAY MP3S AND DVDS IN LINUX.

    You are not all purchasing the codecs, so don't even try to say you are.

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  166. No one has even been sued for using libdvdcss to watch movies on Linux.

    Nice try fucker.

    anti-Linux zealots = love FUD and litigation threats

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  167. Tom wrote...

    Just a small example, last time I looked at Mandriva (2008, or so) it was quite hard to install Gnome Do. It was not in the repository. Why? Perhaps there's an agenda against Mono, perhaps somebody didn't like it,


    Then use a different distribution, one that supports Mono. I changed to Ubuntu from Mandriva because I didn't like their policies.

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  168. Anonymous said....


    You are telling me, some hobby OS built by a few, is better than a billion dollar corporation that hires the best of the best programmers?


    Yes, not only better, but considerably better.

    But then again it stopped being a hoppy OS when RedHat and IBM and Intel and Novell and HP and Google and dozens of other large and medium sized corporations started investing considerable amounts of money in developing this "hobby" OS.

    In fact the primary kernel developers are employed full time to do nothing but develop the kernel, paid by companies like RedHat and IBM and Intel and Novell and HP and Google.

    Try telling Google that they are using a hobby OS.

    Or perhaps you have some inside information about Linux that Google dosen't.

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  169. Found something close to the original NVIDIA Linux Driver press release. You can see the date embedded in the URL: August 16, 1999, but the article mentions that the release came weeks prior. You youngsters might be confused. See, this was before GeForce; they were Riva line back then. Windows 2000, not yet released, was known as Windows NT 5. NT 4 couldn't run anything higher than DirectX 3, which was already long obsolete, without shoehorning the NT 5 beta version. Brand new indeed.

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  170. Try telling Google that they are using a hobby OS.

    Don't listen to us. Linus Torvalds himself has stated on multiple occasions that Linux is a hobby to him. He even says that all the desktop and server aspirations were external and that all he ever wanted was a UNIX-like system for his personal use--nothing less, nothing more.

    But what does Google using some self-maintained fork from the 90s for its search engine have to do with watching DVDs on the desktop?

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  171. No one has even been sued for using libdvdcss to watch movies on Linux.

    They would if the DVD Forum thought these freeloaders had any money. Oh, by the way, the reason you guys are all cautious about this stuff now is because of the MP3 scare of 1997 when Thompson/Fraunhofer sent out a blanket C&D threatening unlicensed projects to start paying royalties, disband, or face the potential of legal action. For years you guys pretended this only meant encoding but then Thompson corrected you by pointing out the royalty agreement hadn't changed in a decade and they meant what they said back then.

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  172. @tracyanne

    I believe you are missing something crucial :) It matters not that IBM and others work extensively with Linux development. Not at all. It matters not that Linux has all the capabilities of being a gamers heaven. What matters is that the games, in any numbers, are not available for Linux. Therefore, Linux MUST be a hobby OS. Serious computing requires an endless procession of new games (I just wish I had the discretionary funds these people seem to have)

    I made a mistake earlier. I realize that now. I said that Linux is of some real consequence to the overly zealous Linux bashers. Well, it is of some real consequence. When they respond here (and elsewhere) they are in fact still playing computer games. Regardless of how sophisticated the graphics, plot, etc., ultimately each game is about getting the best of someone, doing someone in, defeating someone, feeling the exhilaration, and heightened self esteem. This is their raison d'etre. This is the reason they must spew anal vitriol endlessly.

    Let us not deprive them of a meaningful life. Anyone got a BFG handy.

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  173. @anonymous July 14, 2009 6:33pm

    The issue is not whether you've been sued or not, moron. It is that you goofs espouse all this freedom nonsense, while breaking the law to use evil proprietary formats.

    GNU/Hypocrisy

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  174. @Ken Holmes,

    You don't have anything else in your repertoire?

    Why is it that if someone plays games on Windows, they are somehow lacking emotional/social skills, yet if you play Gnometris, SuperTux, Frozen Bubble (or anything else from your vast stockpile of '90s era games), that is ok?

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  175. @Ken Holmes,

    No, serious computing requires stable sound, modern, efficient development tools, and availability of professionally-written software. It also requires hardware support, not your hacked-together "solutions" to things.

    Your 1970's OS clone just doesn't cut it.

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  176. @Anonymous 68 or 73 or whatever.

    "Why is it that if someone plays games on Windows, they are somehow lacking emotional/social skills, yet if you play Gnometris, SuperTux, Frozen Bubble (or anything else from your vast stockpile of '90s era games), that is ok?"

    Never said either of these things. I have friends who love their Windows and their games. They don't spend any time in the conflict. I admitted fully that the games on Windows are NOT much available on Linux. I said nothing about the games you mentioned, nor Minesweeper, nor Solitaire, nor any other older simpler game. You are, in fact, quite civil. But you did see something I did not write.

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  177. Therefore, Linux MUST be a hobby OS.

    No, Linux MUST be a hobby OS because its creator has spent the last 18 years telling us that. Like the other guy said, what's with this aversion to "gamers" and the need to artificially direct discussion to them? Did you lose your girlfriend to some WoW player or something?

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  178. @Anonymous #whatever

    "No, serious computing requires stable sound, modern, efficient development tools, and availability of professionally-written software. It also requires hardware support, not your hacked-together "solutions" to things.

    Your 1970's OS clone just doesn't cut it."

    You don't get out much, do you?

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  179. "No, Linux MUST be a hobby OS because its creator has spent the last 18 years telling us that. Like the other guy said, what's with this aversion to "gamers" and the need to artificially direct discussion to them? Did you lose your girlfriend to some WoW player or something?"

    Linux Torvalds also said Linux was created by Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy. I think his sense of humor is somewhat more refined than yours. And, as you know, Linux is an OS kernel.
    I didn't speak of gamers in general.
    I miss my girl friend, but life goes on :)

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  180. Yes, I see that I wrote Linux rather than Linux. So sad. A good example of synaptic reinforcement, though.

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  181. Did it again. Linus, Linus, Linus. Linux, Linus

    Must log in to entropiauniverse.com for rehab.

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  182. @to the anon anti-Linux troll

    Wow you must be some kind of cyber sheriff. Are you going to come arrest me for watching a DVD?

    If not, shut the fuck up. Seriously. You have no right to tell me what is illegal or not.

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  183. You have no right to tell me what is illegal or not.

    Yeah, your facts infringe on his rights! How dare you!

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  184. Yeah it's such a hobby for Linus his net worth is over $20 million and virtually all of that wealth came from his "hobby".

    Man I would love to have hobbies like that.

    Linux is serious business(tm).

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  185. Hey guys. I'm running Linux and I am playing a official DVD of "October Sky".

    I don't see any SWAT team pulling up to my driveway.

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  186. That's because the SWAT team is too busy arresting the anti-Linux troll for using a pirated copy of Windows Vista.

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  187. Linux is free and good but i think they can beat out of windows
    in desktop environment

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  188. You're correct in your assertions.

    But you do come across as a bit of a tool.

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  189. This article is bullshit. I hope people don't actually listen to this moron.

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  190. We all know that Linux is just the kernel. If I have to explain to you why people, to include many advocates and developers, refer to the collection of operating systems using the Linux kernel as just Linux then you must really be a moron. It may be technically wrong; however there is no breif name for the collective of Linux based operating systems so people just call it by the name of the common element in all of them.

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  191. I like it when people still insist on calling it GNU/Linux even when there's nary a scrap of FSF software to be found. Take the various embedded Linux distros, for example, which are typically built against Busybox and uClibc. But, no. GNU/Linux is the "official" name, even when calling it such is totally bullshit, instead of the usual mostly bullshit.

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  192. If you zealots are going to wage your "freedom" crusade, why not do it for real? Like your toe-skin-eating-during-an-interview-leader, RMS.

    That means nothing proprietary, and nothing designed to help you run "M$" "Windoze" software:

    No WINE
    No proprietary NVIDIA drivers, they infringe on your "freedom"
    No illegal playing of mp3s or DVDS
    No Mono / C# it's evil and proprietary

    Think of how "free" you'll feel!

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  193. Speaking of complaints. The last MS OS when I had to manually configure the keyboard layout, was NT 3.51, guest from '93. Also, that operating system spelled the today date properly. 2010 looming, and I still have to setup layouts manually for each user (!), and date is still spelled wrong everywhere, except OpenOffice. So when one speak "Linux", we hear "ignorance" and "desolation".

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  194. What about the hardware? Anything built by closed specs and/or covered by patents similarly infringe on essential human rights. And what about the BIOS, hard drive firmware, etc? How can I possibly live a free life without direct access to this useless low level information?

    What's with all this "paying" for computers, too? When's Negroponte gonna get around to the five computers per adult program, where the starving children in Africa buy *us* computers for a change?

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  195. You know what, mate? I really like this article. I think you have good some arguments, especially about the mainstream media. It's no wonder people have prejudges about Linux. Thanks for posting!

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  196. Syd (usefedora@yahoo.com)July 15, 2009 at 6:03 AM

    I never understood why, as in drug manufacturing, there isn't a timeline on the copyright of software. At some point, a patent on a new drug exclusivity is over, and you get generic versions. You can't alter chemical composition, Tylenol is Acetaminophen, Advil is Ibuprofen, Zoloft is Wellbutrin, and so on...at some point the codecs for DVD playback, MP3 format, etc should indeed follow suit, in my opinion. There is still an audience who things the name-brand is the best, and it will usually be easier to install and function with 100% of those applications claiming compatibility, but a cheaper alternative is available if you so wish.

    I think this would help both Windows and the community at large because as someone said, more competition means better products for us. I run linux, and I have paid for various applications that make my life easier, I have no problem paying for something, so long as it works, I get support, and I get fixes should the need arise.

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  197. Syd (usefedora@yahoo.com)July 15, 2009 at 6:07 AM

    "What about the hardware? Anything built by closed specs and/or covered by patents similarly infringe on essential human rights"

    I just find this kinda laughable ... I get the point, but extrapolating that proprietary formats is akin to the suppression seen in Iran and China on the populous just doesn't get your point across at all.

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  198. Syd (usefedora@yahoo.com)July 15, 2009 at 6:17 AM

    You know I just reread your post with this, I think you were being sarcastic after all ;-)

    But correct me if I am wrong, it is early, and I haven't had enough coffee yet

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