Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 19th Dec 2005 16:32 UTC, submitted by Valour
Linux "There is a lot of confusing information about the GNU/Linux operating system, open source and free software, and related issues in the press today. Many of these technologies and concepts are difficult to understand because they deviate from the standard historical traditions of the software industry. There are also a number of sponsored reports and other corporate propaganda published around the Web that smear the image of Linux and free software. In the interest of making a few basic concepts clear, this article will bring light to the darkness perpetuated by uninformed journalists, campaigning CEOs, and misleading advertisements."
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Nice article
by archiesteel on Mon 19th Dec 2005 17:37 UTC
archiesteel
Member since:
2005-07-02

Well thought out, balanced, and avoiding any of the usual pitfalls. A must-read for suits everywhere...

Reply Score: 2

RE: Nice article
by Accident on Mon 19th Dec 2005 17:50 UTC in reply to "Nice article"
Accident Member since:
2005-07-29

I agree, well balanched.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Nice article
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:37 UTC in reply to "RE: Nice article"
Anonymous Member since:
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Actually, it's not balanced at all.. It's clearly written by someone with a pro-Linux / anti-Windows agenda.

I especially like the point about "I can't run MS Office if I switch to Linux" and how he claims that crossover office can run it.

Actually, CrossOver office *cannot* run Office 2003, and even OfficeXP is virtually unusable under it because of performance problems and serious bugs that render many of its features unusable.

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: Nice article
by dekernel on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nice article"
dekernel Member since:
2005-07-07

Not really sure what your problem is, but both of those suites work just fine for me. Plus they have a bronze rating.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Nice article
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:47 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nice article"
Anonymous Member since:
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Quote: Actually, CrossOver office *cannot* run Office 2003, and even OfficeXP is virtually unusable under it because of performance problems and serious bugs that render many of its features unusable.

To true...and probably for the same reasons why anyone trying to install IE with Wine on a Linux desktop has to jump through several rings of fire to get the damned thing to work. It's because Microsoft deliberatly throws up roadblocks for anyone trying to install their applications on anything but Windows. This goes all the way back to the early 90s when VirtualPC emulated Windows on MacOS. And Microsoft has been making it harder ever since. If only they could settle one ONE DIRECTORY for its DLLs, or even one version of a DLL, this whole argument would be moot.

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: Nice article
by luser on Tue 20th Dec 2005 10:23 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Nice article"
luser Member since:
2005-08-31

and probably for the same reasons why anyone trying to install IE with Wine on a Linux desktop has to jump through several rings of fire to get the damned thing to work.

they haven't to: http://www.tatanka.com.br/ies4linux/

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Nice article
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 21:15 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nice article"
Anonymous Member since:
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"Actually, CrossOver office *cannot* run Office 2003, and even OfficeXP is virtually unusable under it because of performance problems and serious bugs that render many of its features unusable."

I run Office XP on Codeweavers; what are the bugs? It has silver stars which indicate some bugs.

FYI to OSNews readers: 2000 is marked with gold stars by Codeweavers; typically silver stars for Office XP. Gold stars are flawless performance.

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: Nice article
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 21:17 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nice article"
Anonymous Member since:
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"To true...and probably for the same reasons why anyone trying to install IE with Wine on a Linux desktop has to jump through several rings of fire to get the damned thing to work."

I suspect getting IE to work under Wine with anything that resembles usable is probably a lost cause. IE is simply way too deeply embedded into the underlying platform (so tied in Microsoft originally thought it would be impossible to remove it) for the Windows version of IE to work on any other platform.

Not that I can understand why anyone would want to run IE on Linux anyway... I don't even run IE on Windows.

Reply Score: 0

RE[5]: Nice article
by poofyhairguy on Tue 20th Dec 2005 01:25 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Nice article"
poofyhairguy Member since:
2005-07-14


Not that I can understand why anyone would want to run IE on Linux anyway... I don't even run IE on Windows.


I need IE and its crap Active-X for school.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Nice article
by Anonymous on Thu 22nd Dec 2005 14:39 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Nice article"
Anonymous Member since:
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Some applications require Internet Explorer, so one's advised to install it with Wine. I had it installed quite easily with Wine Tools and it runs flawlessly on my Slackware.

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: Nice article
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 22:30 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nice article"
Anonymous Member since:
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Well how about you attempt to make it balanced, by submitting your corrections to the author along with proof.

Reply Score: 0

RE: Nice article
by CodeMonkey on Mon 19th Dec 2005 21:30 UTC in reply to "Nice article"
CodeMonkey Member since:
2005-09-22

I would not agree that it is fair and balanced at all. Now many of you really like GNU/Linux and strongly dislike Microsoft and so you not only agree with the article, but quite like it as well. And that's fine. I just don't think it's "fair and balanced".

That's like my mom saying she likes Fox News because it's fair and balanced. She's a pretty hardcore republican so she likes what they have to say and really agrees with almost all their views. But that definitely doesn't make it fair and balanced. Fox News is as right-wing as it gets.

It just seems like the theme of the article is (w/ the exception of the SCO point):

Myth: Something about how Linux/FOSS is bad and MS/Closed-source is good.
Truth: Wrong, MS/Closed is band and Linux/FOSS is good.

While there's nothing wrong with this sort article, I would tend to be more careful about labeling it something it's not simply because you like it and agree with it.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Nice article
by Simba on Mon 19th Dec 2005 22:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Nice article"
Simba Member since:
2005-10-08

I agree. This article is not at all balanced. It is blatently obvious that it is written by someone who is very pro Linux and very anti-Windows.

I actually find it kind of amazing that anyone could try to claim the article was balanced and keep a straight face while making the claim.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Nice article
by archiesteel on Tue 20th Dec 2005 17:25 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nice article"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

It's balanced in the sense that it does not say that Linux is good for every situation.

The problem is that there is a lot of FUD being thrown around about Linux by Microsoft. Dispelling that FUD is not having a pro-Linux, anti-Windows bias, it's simply stating the truth.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Nice article
by archiesteel on Tue 20th Dec 2005 17:27 UTC in reply to "RE: Nice article"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

I do think it is balanced, as it does not claim that Linux is good for all situations. It even says that Windows Server 2003 can be a better choice in some situations.

You can dispel anti-Linux FUD and still be balanced.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Nice article????
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 22:36 UTC in reply to "Nice article"
Anonymous Member since:
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This article is basically Linux propaganda.

Reply Score: 0

RE[2]: Nice article????
by archiesteel on Tue 20th Dec 2005 17:28 UTC in reply to "RE: Nice article????"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

No it's not. It simply dispels myths spread by Microsoft and its shills.

It's not propaganda if it's the truth, you know...

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Nice article????
by Simba on Tue 20th Dec 2005 17:34 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Nice article????"
Simba Member since:
2005-10-08

> No it's not. It simply dispels myths

Dispelling myths requires presenting empirical evidence to the contrary. This article didn't present any. It presented a bunch of statements the author simply claims to be truth.

> if it's the truth, you know...

Truth without documenting evidence only flies in religion. Not in science, or IT, or business, or any other logical pursuit.

Edited 2005-12-20 17:35

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Nice article????
by archiesteel on Tue 20th Dec 2005 21:14 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Nice article????"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Dispelling myths requires presenting empirical evidence to the contrary. This article didn't present any.

Yes it did, actually. It disproved the myth that you can't run MS Office in Linux quite clearly.

Truth without documenting evidence only flies in religion. Not in science, or IT, or business, or any other logical pursuit.

I'm not sure you're very well placed to talk about "logical pursuit."

In any case, you're welcome to indicate where the article was wrong. After all, you yourself didn't present evidence that the author was wrong, but merely claimed he was.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Nice article????
by Simba on Tue 20th Dec 2005 21:51 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Nice article????"
Simba Member since:
2005-10-08

"In any case, you're welcome to indicate where the article was wrong."

Well, I will point out one statement in the article that is 100% wrong:

"There is some evidence to suggest that small amounts of standards-compliant and BSD-licensed code may be common between the two operating systems. This is not in violation of any law or license, as the code in question may be freely used (and in some cases, must be used) in Unix-like operating systems."

This is not true. The BSD code potentially could be in violation if it comes from a version of BSD prior to 4.4 BSD Lite. Much of the original code licensed under the BSD license (particularily much of the code contained on the Berkeley Net/2 tape) infringed on UNIX patents and violated distribution agreements. This is the main reason why FreeBSD was tied up for awhile. The original 1.0 release likely infringed on UNIX patents. Although the full details of the out of court settlement between UCB and the UNIX copyright holders were never fully disclosed, what is known is that UCB agreed to strip major portions of code from BSD (which resulted in 4.4 BSD Lite, which FreeBSD, OpenBSD, and NetBSD are based on), and in return, Novell (who held the UNIX copyright by then) agreed to say that the resulting 4.4 BSD Lite distribution after all the code stripping, did not contain any infringing code.

So whether the BSD code in Linux infringes or not is largely dependant on whether it came from 4.4 BSD Lite, or, if it predates that. And there is at least a reasonable chance it predates that since Linux was chugging along while USB was tied up in court with AT&T over infringing BSD code.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Nice article????
by archiesteel on Tue 20th Dec 2005 22:32 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Nice article????"
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

First, the statement is not 100% wrong. When you make absolute claims like that you set yourself up for an easy rebuttal.

Next, consider the sentence:

"There is some evidence to suggest that small amounts of standards-compliant and BSD-licensed code may be common between the two operating systems."

He's obvioulsy referring to code that is PRESENTLY in BSD. That code is clean and legal since it has since been released under the BSD license (notice he says "BSD-licensed code", not "BSD code").

As far as patents are concerned, you seem to be making an indirect reference to the SCO/IBM trial. However, it seems that the FreeBSD Core Team members disagreed with you on this very web site:

"Since most of the key concepts on Unix were invented before software patents, and also many years ago, the patents have either expired, been placed into the public domain, or were never issued. It is unlikely that SCO could prevail on claims in this area as well. A careful reading of SCO's statements show that they refer only to Unix IP, and copyright law to justify their suit against IBM."

http://www.osnews.com/story.php?news_id=3415&page=8

Of course, both Novell and SCO (who both claim to hold the Unix copyrights) have distributed Linux under the GPL, which means that the point is moot. There are no Unix patent threats against Linux as such (there may be from Microsoft, but that's a different issue altogether).

Reply Score: 1

RE[7]: Nice article????
by Simba on Tue 20th Dec 2005 23:39 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Nice article????"
Simba Member since:
2005-10-08

"He's obvioulsy referring to code that is PRESENTLY in BSD. That code is clean and legal since it has since been released under the BSD license (notice he says "BSD-licensed code", not "BSD code")."

No, he isn't obviously referring to that. Since the original BSD code was BSD licensed. And any BSD licensed code in Linux probably dates to the very early days of Linux, and very possibly predates 4.4 BSD Lite.

"There are no Unix patent threats against Linux as such (there may be from Microsoft, but that's a different issue altogether)."

The BSD infringing code was largely a copyright issue as well. UCB was illegaly making Unix code available in BSD Unix outside of the academic institution. The original version of FreeBSD was build from that code (and it is very possible the BSD licensed code from Linux comes from that original code rather than the 4.4 BSD Lite tree).

Now, as far as SCO not having ever contacted FreeBSD, or only hinting that OS X infringes on on copyright, basically, they cannot go after FreeBSD or Apple. Because as I said, part of the settlement of the UCB lawsuit was that Novell agreed that 4.4 BSD Lite did not contain any infringing code. So that is already legally established. And all versions of FreeBSD after 1.1 (I believe it was 1.1) are based on 4.4 BSD Lite and do not contain any of the older BSD code. So SCO can't go after FreeBSD or Apple because of terms agreed to in the UCB / Novell settlement.

"Of course, both Novell and SCO (who both claim to hold the Unix copyrights) have distributed Linux under the GPL, which means that the point is moot"

No. It does not make the point moot at all. And there is absolutely legal basis for you to say it does. There is no legal basis whatsoever for the claim that just because Novell and SCO distributed Linux under the GPL, that they gave up their copyright claims. I don't know where that idea came from, and you are definately not the first person I have heard it from. But there is no legal basis for it at all.

Reply Score: 1

Well done! :)
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 18:02 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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I agree, it's one of those things that has been stated before, but bears repeating. And it's very well presented, except for one little thing: the concept of 'getting one's money's worth'. In the section where he talks about the higher saleries that certified Linux professionals earn, he argues (correcly, IMO) that companies are getting what they pay for in terms of added expertise. But then when addressing the free software objection, he states (also correctly) that price does not determine value. He might have avoided this seeming contradiction by adding that price does not *necessarily* determine value.

Other than that small quibble, it was very well presented. I especially liked the rebuttal to the myth that 'no one was ever fired for recommending Microsoft'. People used to say that about IBM. And if his counter assertion is true (which is quite logical, I might add), then I could question my job security for recommending Firefox instead of Internet Explorer where I work. LOL

Well done!

Reply Score: 0

Bad article
by ma_d on Mon 19th Dec 2005 18:24 UTC
ma_d
Member since:
2005-06-29

The counter-examples were stupid and blown way out of proportion: Selling a $50,000 CD-R? A better example would be buying a CD-R on rebate verse buying the same CD-R at full price.
And people get fired for recommending Win95 as a webserver? Well duh, that's not recommending Microsoft; that's recommending Microsoft completely wrong...
The fact is that as the "de facto standard" Microsoft solutions are a safe bet for many because they're not even recommending a change; just an upgrade. It's recommendations for change that get you in trouble. In which cause, I'd bet someone who recommended going from LAMP to IIS5 would have been fired ;) . Or at least they wouldn't be so trusted in the future.

Reply Score: 1

Myth #10 : LInux is easy to install
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 18:35 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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If you want to get your state-of-the-art PC machine up with all devices working and the newest drivers - dump Linux. A well-done installation of XP SP2 gives you plug & play for your hardware. Or even better, use an Apple machine !

Finding, installing and configuring device drivers on Linux is a pain in the ass.

Linux is not ready for the desktop, although the nerd community keeps telling us this for years and years and years ...

1999 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
2000 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
2001 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
2002 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
2003 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
2004 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
2005 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
2006 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
.
.
.
2010 : The year of the Linux Desktop ?
.
.
.
2015 : Dell sells its first Linux-Preinstalled PC !
2016 : Dell cancels its Linux products due to no customer feedback.


Sorry for you. But Apple and Microsoft will keep dominating the market. It will save you a lot of frustration if you accept it.

Reply Score: 0

Accident Member since:
2005-07-29

Here comes the FUD!
Tell me......where in the article is 10?
The only reason SOTA PC works is because alot of the time the hardware manufacturer makes drivers for Windows no Linux.
If the manufatcurer do the same for Linux it would be a moot subject.

Reply Score: 1

rayiner Member since:
2005-07-06

1) Windows is horrible on new PCs, given that Microsoft doesn't offer updated disks with new drivers. I couldn't even install Windows on my new computer, because it didn't support my SATA hard drive. Now, Windows users will shout "slipstream" at me, but I have no idea how to do that. I thought Windows was supposed to be easy to use?

2) If you say "Apple" will dominate the market, then you must say Linux will dominate market too. Depending on who you ask, Linux's desktop market share is either just below or just above Apple's, and growing faster.

Reply Score: 1

Robert Escue Member since:
2005-07-08

On point 2, show me how many vendors provide support for the OS (Linux) as well as the hardware. With Apple you have "one stop shopping" for support. So to say that without any data to back that up is incorrect.

To slipstream drivers look here:

http://greenmachine.msfnhosting.com/READING/addraid.htm

http://www.maximumpc.com/2005/01/how_to_slipstre.html

All I had to do is use Google, this isn't rocket science.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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Well, I can be dense too. See below for dense responses to your dense comments;

On point 2, show me how many vendors provide support for the OS (Linux) as well as the hardware. With Apple you have "one stop shopping" for support. So to say that without any data to back that up is incorrect.

Apple = 1

Linux > 1

To slipstream drivers look here:

...and when Linux users say 'consult Google' Windows and Mac people say 'SEE -- Linux is too hard!'.

Reply Score: 1

Robert Escue Member since:
2005-07-08

OK, which vendors support Linux on their hardware? And I don't mean that they install it on their hardware, if I have a problem I can call a support number and get a technician to assist me.

The original poster stated "Now, Windows users will shout "slipstream" at me, but I have no idea how to do that." So I posted links to two articles on how to slipstream drivers and Service Packs.

And just exactly how are my comments dense?

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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OK, which vendors support Linux on their hardware? And I don't mean that they install it on their hardware, if I have a problem I can call a support number and get a technician to assist me.
afaik, HP does this for businesses, not for single/home users. still it's a start.

Reply Score: 0

Robert Escue Member since:
2005-07-08

In light of the comparison to Apple, it doesn't apply. Just because I can buy a zSeries mainframe, a pSeries, or an iSeries server from IBM or a DL380 or an Integrity server from HP installed configured with Linux is not the same thing. Another apples and oranges comparison (no pun intended) since the vast majority of Apple's product line is desktop computers and workstations.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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Yep, and to do just about anything in linux all it takes is a quick google for the answers too.

But just like slipstreaming drivers, some things may as well be rocket science to most users.

Reply Score: 0

Tom K Member since:
2005-07-06

1. This isn't a problem for a number of reasons. First of all, it's not Microsoft's job to keep drivers updated and have new CDs pressed at the whim of every manufacturer. Second, the average user never reinstalls Windows with his pre-bought PC, and if he has to, that's what the restore CDs are for. Third, if you put your PC together yourself because of all the obvious benefits, be prepared to have to do some extra work (like using that SATA driver floppy disk).

2. Weak comparison. Apple has many things going for it that Linux does not. For starters, one is a company, the other is just ... well, a kernel with no real association to any particular company.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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That's pretty funny considering Dell had for a while an option to install Linux on some of their PCs, they just weren't popular enough because anyone in their right mind (anyone who would want to run linux on their desktop) doesn't buy from Dell.

Well, let's see, the only thing most modern desktop distributions have any driver problem with is installing the nvidia and ati drivers. They are closed source, so it's not the fault of the linux.

Linux IS easy to install. Easier than Windows XP is. Yes, you can slipstream it, but if you don't already have a working operating system you can't very well log onto the net and learn how to do it, can you?

A lot of distributions are not only easier to install than Windows, they are faster too, because you don't have to spend hours after installation installing the software that you need to make your computer usable. I can have <place your favorite distribution here> installed in about 30-45 minutes and have an office suite a good web browser (no IE here) and art program, etc. What do you have when you install windows? Solitaire and Wordpad? Maybe Minesweeper makes you happy.

With windows, after a fresh install (unless slipstreamed) you still NEED to install a firewall and an anti-virus program. Especially if you only have a pre-SP1 CD... then you're screwed the second you log onto the net.

So stop spreading FUD. Obviously you haven't tried a linux distribution in a while.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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That's pretty funny considering Dell had for a while an option to install Linux on some of their PCs, they just weren't popular enough because anyone in their right mind (anyone who would want to run linux on their desktop) doesn't buy from Dell.

Let's be clear: Dell _still_ has an option to install Linux if you want it on select models. They charge _more_ for it -- even the non-commercial unsupported versions.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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I recently installed Windows98 -and- Damnsmall Linux (DSL)on a bunch of PII's (I wanted them to have web/email & image recovery capability next time they get whacked by a virus). While installing windows I left 400M of unpartitioned space on their hard drives, which is more than double what DSL alone requires. The machines had 128M RAM, way more than DSL requires; so it was possible to load the whole o/s to memory when booting from the CD.

After windows installation, from booting with the DSL CD to having a fully functional Win98/DSL Linux dual booter... under 10 minutes. This included copying/installing partimage and the latest Mozilla suite, and configuring the user(s) email. Graphics & sound "just worked".

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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If you want to get your state-of-the-art PC machine up with all devices working and the newest drivers - dump Linux.

I installed Windows XP on an Athlon 64 3500+ yesterday. Guess what? It wouldn't install without reading drivers from a floppy disk.

This system did not have a floppy drive. I had to run to Frys to get one so I could install XP, Microsoft's most perfect OS.

GNU/Linux just worked, with a minor acpi warning. It probably didn't have the latest drivers, but they let me have access to the SATA drive without requiring a floppy.

So in my experience, you are wrong.

Reply Score: 0

poofyhairguy Member since:
2005-07-14

If you want to get your state-of-the-art PC machine up with all devices working and the newest drivers - dump Linux.

Or just install Linux. Thats what I did- Ubuntu worked perfect out of the box on my brand new home built AMD 3800+ X2 with a new Nvidia card and a new motherboard. Install on a boot from SATA hard disk with no problems. The hardest part was installing my Nvidia drivers, and with Automatix that was as hard as clicking a button.

Maybe you have had a bad experiance with Desktop Linux. Thats understandable. What is not understandable is how it has given you a negative bias and has lead you to generalize!

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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apple dominating?
that is absolutely adorable...


apple sells mp3 players....oh yeah and a few computers.

Reply Score: 0

Year of the desktop Linux:
by Anonymous on Tue 20th Dec 2005 09:54 UTC in reply to "Myth #10 : LInux is easy to install"
Anonymous Member since:
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Let me see:

1999 was my year of the desktop Linux, because I used Windows only for gaming during that year. At that time I was not into multimedia work (simply did not interest me).

2001 My mother's Windows PC went under in a flood of viruses, and I aked her if she would agree to an experiment. She since then almost exclusively uses Linux, Windows is used only for telebanking, the software is not available for Windows.

Today I am doing lots of multimedia stuff on Linux (music editing and generating panorama pictures from a series of photographs), I have a working TV card in my PC, have a sound card, use a camera and a mp3 recording hrd drive which are all correctly recognized from my Linux.

So I wonder why some obviously uninformed people keep on stating that the year of desktop Linux will never come. It already is here for several years, but will take some time until people realize that. If a Linux distro does not recognize your hardware, blame the hardware manufacturer, not the distributor who really does a good job at autoconfiguration these days.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Year of the desktop Linux:
by Simba on Tue 20th Dec 2005 16:47 UTC in reply to "Year of the desktop Linux:"
Simba Member since:
2005-10-08

"So I wonder why some obviously uninformed people keep on stating that the year of desktop Linux will never come. It already is here for several years, but will take some time until people realize that."

Well, it's really not here. It's here for less than 2% of desktop users. And most of them are geeks, scientists, or engineers. And I don't think that is what the author (or even most Linux people) have in mind when they say "This will be the year for Linux on the desktop".

"If a Linux distro does not recognize your hardware, blame the hardware manufacturer, not the distributor who really does a good job at autoconfiguration these days."

Well, Linux has to share at least some of the blame here. It is partially Linux's fault because the distros and community in general have not come up with any kind of standard system for installing drivers. Because of this, adding third party drivers is often a major hassle that involves building from source, copying files manually, and then messing with configuration files.

But whether the distros are to blame, or the hardware manufactuerers is kind of irrelevant anyway. It's not a blame game. Because ultimately, Linux is the one that pays the price. The average user can't walk into Best Buy, buy something off the shelf, bring it home, and expect it to be nearly as easy to get working on Linux as it would be on Windows. Something needs to be done about that.

Reply Score: 0

poofyhairguy Member since:
2005-07-14

The average user can't walk into Best Buy, buy something off the shelf, bring it home, and expect it to be nearly as easy to get working on Linux as it would be on Windows. Something needs to be done about that.

Why?

Reply Score: 1

Googlesaurus Member since:
2005-10-19

1999 : The year of the Linux Desktop Nope
2000 : The year of the Linux Desktop Nope
2001 : The year of the Linux Desktop Nope
2002 : The year of the Linux Desktop Nada
2003 : The year of the Linux Desktop Not a chance
2004 : The year of the Linux Desktop Could have been
2005 : The year of the Linux Desktop Should have been
2006 : The year of the Linux Desktop Heading backwards.

Reply Score: 0

Robert Escue
Member since:
2005-07-08

Just because you have more people looking at the code for a given F/OSS project does not necessarily mean that all of the security issues and/or bugs will be found. This depends a lot on skill level of the various programmers and not everyone who writes code is a trained security analyst or has access to sophisitcated code analysis tools. It also depends on the security awareness of the people managing the project and if their priority is security or pushing code out.

Not every exploit or problem piece of code is found by the "good guys", take for example the CDE dtspcd exploit. It was found as the result of using a honeypot, not any exhaustive code review. Based on the number of exploits logged by SecurityFocus and SecurityTracker, I see no reason to believe that F/OSS is inherently more secure than closed source software, despite claims to the contrary.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Myth #10 : LInux is easy to install
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 18:46 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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Windows has never been intended to run on supercomputers.
Linux has never been intended to run on end-user desktops.


So what ?

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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Linux has never been intended to run on end-user desktops.

Linus designed linux to run on the desktop, because that's all he had, and that's how he wanted to use it. There are several quotes all over the internet supporting this contention. It is only since big business got involved in linux that it's been pushed towards the server space.

However, I do agree that supercomputer stats are meaningless in a discussion about desktop linux.

Reply Score: 0

Tom K Member since:
2005-07-06

No, Linus wanted a UNIX that he could run on his 386 at home that wasn't encumbered by patents and copyrights, and that he didn't have to pay a very expensive license fee for.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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From http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2002059632...

Q. Where do you expect Linux to see its biggest growth over the next five years?

A. I've felt strongly that the advantage of Linux is that it doesn't have a niche or any special market, but that different individuals and companies end up pushing it in the direction they want, and as such you end up with something that is pretty balanced across the board.

I continue to feel that the desktop is interesting, because it's how I personally have always used Linux, and what I myself have been interested in. It's also the technically (and marketwise) most challenging area, which makes me appreciate it all the more. And clearly there is a lot of budding interest in the area from the commercial players.

Reply Score: 0

Tom K Member since:
2005-07-06

That doesn't quite answer "Why did you start writing Linux?". Different question, different area in terms of an answer.

Reply Score: 1

v Ok, nerds
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 18:57 UTC
RE: Ok, nerds
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:06 UTC in reply to "Ok, nerds"
Anonymous Member since:
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You're trolling on a news site. Looks like someone else needs to get a life.

On topic, however, this article was written well and had some nice arguments. There is so much FUD about desktop usability, while I personally think it is easier to install Ubuntu and use Gnome then go through that horrible Windows installation. The only real problem is wireless, which is slowly being remedied by ndiswrapper and reverse-engineered drivers.

Reply Score: 0

RE: Ok, nerds
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:48 UTC in reply to "Ok, nerds"
Anonymous Member since:
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Why?
Because it is promoted much more.
Why I don't have 4 desktops and why do I have to restart my conputer, when I install new graphic card and when I get security updates If Windows is so ready for the Desktops.

On Linux I don't have to restart PC even when I'm upgrading a kernel.

Reply Score: 0

v RE[2]: Ok, nerds
by Tom K on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:38 UTC in reply to "RE: Ok, nerds"
RE[3]: Ok, nerds
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 21:40 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Ok, nerds"
Anonymous Member since:
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When you install a new graphics card, you don't have to restart your computer? Awesome! What else does Linux let you do? Download teh whole Internets? Find a girlfriend?
it's true, you don't need to reboot after installing a new gfx cards, even updating your driver does not require a reboot (you have to restart X though).
in fact, you could download the whole internet, if disk space would allow you to.
and i found my girldfriend using linux.
so, yeah, it does pretty much of what you want it to do...

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: Ok, nerds
by Tom K on Tue 20th Dec 2005 02:06 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Ok, nerds"
Tom K Member since:
2005-07-06

So tell me ... how do you plan to safely remove your video card while the computer is still on, insert a new one, and have your generic x86 box re-initialize the video BIOS?

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Ok, nerds
by Mediocre Sarcasm Man on Tue 20th Dec 2005 07:55 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Ok, nerds"
Mediocre Sarcasm Man Member since:
2005-07-06

So tell me ... how do you plan to safely remove your video card while the computer is still on, insert a new one, and have your generic x86 box re-initialize the video BIOS?

Go back and read carefully. Clearly it was a comment on restarting after installing new video drivers, but if you want to be anal about it: You can install a new video card without a restart, but you will have to power down for the actual hardware installation.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Ok, nerds
by Tom K on Tue 20th Dec 2005 08:11 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Ok, nerds"
Tom K Member since:
2005-07-06

He mentioned drivers apart from the video card, so no.

And how exactly would you go about NOT doing the equivalent of an OS restart, but still powering down your hardware? Note that standby/suspend modes don't count, simply because the OS would still think the old card is in the system. That would lead to problems.

Reply Score: 1

exactly what pinguinistas want to hear
by smashIt on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:07 UTC
smashIt
Member since:
2005-07-06

i realy love the arguments in thes article.

linux is better because if a bug is found it is patched emediately (wich is a plain lie). but hey! who cares if the patch wasn't tested and breakes a load of other things, you didn't have to wait for it.

linux is better because you don't have to search for drivers on the manufacturer's homepage. you simply download new isos of your distribution of the week. At least you know how to spend your weekend when connected via dial-up.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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Your arguments still apply to proprietary software as well. We've all seen poorly tested patches or last minute fixes that don't quite work. We've also all seen high quality work come out of FOSS and standard big name companies.

Everything sucks on dialup, doesn't matter what software licensing you prefer.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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I NEVER (not a single one time) got my distribution messed up when I applied security updates. I never apply updates to my mothers Linux PC because she is on dial up and is therfore highly invisible to the internet, additionally to having a fully closed firewall.

I hear different stories about updating and breaking things from the Windows users I know. The only ones who have no security problems have an additional router (running on Linux ;) )installed between their computer and the internet.

That is MY perception of how things are, maybe you have different experiences in your social environment, and I would be looking forward to reading about them here.

Reply Score: 1

v Re:exactly what pinguinistas want to hear
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:09 UTC
Anonymous Member since:
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You know, it really amazes me that an industry born of tinkerers has somehow risen above the notion that spending a little time fiddling around with your computer is equivalent to one's time being worthless. You Microsoft fanboys are about as classist and self-superior as they come!

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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You know, it really amazes me that an industry born of tinkerers has somehow risen above the notion that spending a little time fiddling around with your computer is equivalent to one's time being worthless. You Microsoft fanboys are about as classist and self-superior as they come!

So very true. Computers were just so much more fun when the only people that had them were called geeks or nerds. It takes more fiddling with Windows to get a working system for me than it does for Linux.

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Anonymous Member since:
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Well you know, it all goes back to their school-days. They want to feel they were stuffed in their locker for SOMETHING!

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Anonymous Member since:
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You know, it really amazes me that an industry born of tinkerers has somehow risen above the notion that spending a little time fiddling around with your computer is equivalent to one's time being worthless. You Microsoft fanboys are about as classist and self-superior as they come!

Well said.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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You know, it really amazes me that an industry born of tinkerers has somehow risen above the notion that spending a little time fiddling around with your computer is equivalent to one's time being worthless.
yeah, and the most funny part is that those windows users fiddle for days as well until everything is just right for them. to prove my point - at work we got new laptops, i installed ubuntu on it (over the pre-installed xp), and was back at work in 2 hours. my colleagues took two days of installing stuff and fiddling around with all kind of stupied things. i even had exactly the same settings after i my 2 hours of installing (i just copied home and presto).

Reply Score: 0

somebody Member since:
2005-07-07

ACK. Linux is only "free" if your time has no worth !

While your comment can be taken as completely valid (I even agree with it to some degree, most users don't take correct approach to Linux)

Validity depends on:
1. on what you do for living
2. how you implement the use of Linux
3. direction of your bussines
4. hardware and software researh before decision

/*Personal view and experience*/
My OSX and Windows use and support can only account to acceptable loss which is covered (and refounded) with Linux support. If it would optional I would leave those two worlds long ago, but since loss when supporting them is acceptable (and to admit, I got more Linux jobs while supporting other platforms than directly) or maybe even proffitable if you look from the other side of the story. Only in last two years solo-Linux jobs started to appear, but they increase with time.

For example. when buying hardware I always use common /. trolling question: "Yeah, but does it run 100% on Linux?" If you just use this logic: "Yes? Ok! No? Goodbye!" problems are trivial and non-compareable to problems you can meet on Windows.

Reply Score: 2

Anonymous Member since:
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Or you can use Ubuntu or some other modern distro which solves most of the administrative work. Or maybe you just have hardware that's flat out not supported by Linux, then your just out of luck.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous
Member since:
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Sorry, but I've recently seen a notebook-user in a train, nearly working 3 hours getting his Linux sound driver to work - with help from his friend sitting next to him. Since I know that at least ONE of them is a day-by-day linux user (develops software for telephone companies with C++), I was shocked.

I think it's honest to repeat it :
Linux is only "free" if your time has no worth !

Reply Score: 3

Anonymous Member since:
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>Linux is only "free" if your time has no worth !

That's always a great one. Windows is never "free" in any sense whatsoever, under any conditions, and even if your time has no worth, so it must be better than Linux, which is "only 'free' if your time has no worth."

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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That's always a great one. Windows is never "free" in any sense whatsoever, under any conditions, and even if your time has no worth, so it must be better than Linux, which is "only 'free' if your time has no worth."

Agreed. I won't touch Windows at all if IE and Outlook have been used unless it is for Windows Update and only Windows Update. Even then, it is a collosal PITA much of the time.

With next to no specific experience with the OS, I've been able to fix Macs and most unix/Unix systems. The more open, the more likely that it is possible to do a repair without wiping out the OS and reinstalling from scratch. That's not true with Windows...thus the reason why I avoid it even if I double my normal rate.

Finally talked my brother in law into getting a Mac for his kids. Only took 5 years and after refusing to put in more time beyond the 30+ I'd already done for them.

Windows, I lothe thee.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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Perhaps you can expand your mind and realize not every sound driver is like that, not ever distro makes it that painful. Maybe even in time the bugs those two were fighting will be fixed, a patch released and all will be well.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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and i can say the same situation about a windows user, what is your point?

that is not a standard example, most soundcards will just work with windows or linux...

however it can be said, when something doesnt work it will be a pain in the ass regardless of the OS.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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I've got a dual booter (Win2K & Linux). I've got a sound card and a parallel port CD writer that won't work under Windows because their vendors have seen fit to withdraw support for them; no drivers availiable for Win2K or newer.

On Linux the sound card "just worked". I did spend a few days searching for a solution for the CD writer, but once found I just had to add 3 lines to a text file to get it work as well (-much- more reliably than it ever did under Windows98).

Using your logic, Windows98 would be a better o/s for me simply because I'd have had an easier time getting my hardware to work!

This is one of Linux's strengths... nobody is forbidden to modify a (non-proprietary) "driver". And so there's lots of 100% functional hardware out there still happily chugging away under Linux (or *BSD). And/or it would be if not sent to landfill sites by inhabitants of the Windows world.

Reply Score: 1

"So stop spreading FUD."
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:19 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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Stop it yourself at first - who began the war ? The Linux zealots did !

Reply Score: 0

RE: "So stop spreading FUD."
by Mediocre Sarcasm Man on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:38 UTC in reply to ""So stop spreading FUD.""
Mediocre Sarcasm Man Member since:
2005-07-06

Stop it yourself at first - who began the war ? The Linux zealots did !

Excuse me, what!? Can you explain that?

Reply Score: 1

RE: "So stop spreading FUD."
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:43 UTC in reply to ""So stop spreading FUD.""
Anonymous Member since:
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Stop it yourself at first - who began the war ? The Linux zealots did !

* Are you sure about that?

* If you are, where do you think the 'Linux zealots' came from?

Reply Score: 0

I've already seen something like that...
by DonQ on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:36 UTC
DonQ
Member since:
2005-06-29

... yes, of course - yet another "Get The Facts" campaign!

:)

More seriously - although pointed article at first glance seems well written, there are almost no facts inside. Stupid examples, contradictions, unfounded claims - exactly like all these "Get The Facts" stories.

I'm not against Linux (nor against Windows), I'm just not interested in senseless comparisons.

Reply Score: 1

Re
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 19:54 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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On Linux I don't have to restart PC even when I'm upgrading a kernel.

Very intelligent. Didnt anybody tell you that the monolitic Linux kernel is a piece of software that gets bulk-loaded on startup of your machine and that you in fact need a reboot to take benefit of the new kernel, he ?

Reply Score: 1

Stupid Article
by ronaldst on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:07 UTC
ronaldst
Member since:
2005-06-29

Who the hell is gonna purchase Crossover Office to use their Office suite on Linux?

Plain idiotic.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Stupid Article
by bogomipz on Tue 20th Dec 2005 09:21 UTC in reply to "Stupid Article"
bogomipz Member since:
2005-07-11

Well, if you spent a few hundred bucks on software you don't see any way to live without, you'd prolly be fine spending $40 on a product which lets you keep running your apps.

Reply Score: 1

Useless
by Tom K on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:22 UTC
Tom K
Member since:
2005-07-06

Look, people ... these kind of articles are useless. It's just another "Get The Facts" campaign, but instead written by a pro-Linux activist. What difference does it make whether it's Microsoft writing about Windows + Linux, or a pro-Linux activist writing about Windows + Linux?

Do you think you're going to get a neutral and balanced point of view from either party? Keep dreaming.

Believe what you determine for yourself, and just end it there. Why does everyone feel the need for others to make up their minds for them?

Reply Score: 2

9. GNU/Linux is hard to use
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:26 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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9. GNU/Linux is hard to use; Windows is easy to use. This depends on your ability to analyze and solve problems.

That's right, and with Linux, you better be good at solving problems...because that's pretty much what you'll be doing most of the time :lol: :lol: :lol:

Reply Score: 1

RE: 9. GNU/Linux is hard to use
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:52 UTC in reply to "9. GNU/Linux is hard to use"
Anonymous Member since:
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That's right, and with Linux, you better be good at solving problems...because that's pretty much what you'll be doing most of the time :lol: :lol: :lol:

Exactly what kind of problems do you suppose Linux users have to spend all their time fixing? As for Windows problems, I can tell you that not a week goes by where I work that someone doesn't complain of spyware on their Windows computer. It's an absolute epidemic. And do you know why? Because Windows directory structure, which it inherited from DOS (and before that CP/M), does not secure an executable from tampering.

You Microsoft fan boys are a laugh riot with all the FUD you leave lying around like so much dog poop.

Reply Score: 0

RE[2]: 9. GNU/Linux is hard to use
by twitter on Mon 19th Dec 2005 21:33 UTC in reply to "RE: 9. GNU/Linux is hard to use"
twitter Member since:
2005-07-25

Exactly what kind of problems do you suppose Linux users have to spend all their time fixing?

I'll let you know when I finish trying to install a farkin' font on FC4.

someone doesn't complain of spyware

99% of all spyware on people's computers is the result of user actions. While Microsoft's software doesn't make it difficult for *ware to attack, it's also retardedly simple to keep a Windows PC free of any of those problems. Claiming otherwise is FUD, on your part.

Windows directory structure

Please don't be so stupid, the "directory structure" has nothing to do with whether or not a file can be executed.

laugh riot with all the FUD

More laughable even are the linsux zealots (hey, you started it) spreading bullshit FUD like "it's impossible to secure Windows" or "Windows crashes ever six minutes" and variations thereof. FUD in the form of stupid memes that you all like to spew every time you get a chance. Get a life.

And BTW, I use Linux, OS X and Windows all day. The right tool for the job and all that. But I don't masturbate to my religious choice of technology.

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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While Microsoft's software doesn't make it difficult for *ware to attack, it's also retardedly simple to keep a Windows PC free of any of those problems.

Hey, stop calling my Windows-using friends retards.

FUD in the form of stupid memes that you all like to spew every time you get a chance.

Stupid memes like "Linux is free if your time is worthless" and "Windows is secure" and "Linux is communism/socialism/anti-business"?

Looks like both sides are spreading FUD. Us Linux users at least attempt to be honest with our debates. Microsoft, a professional business, not an end user, propogandizes their "Get the Facts" campaign and promotes spreading lies and half-truths. And many of you Windows users have no problem with this? You don't or can't hold businesses accountable for their behavior and actions? Or is it that you simply do not want to?

All of you, from Microsoft's directors down to their end users, are acting like children. Tell me, honestly, isn't it your nap time?

Reply Score: 1

twitter Member since:
2005-07-25

Tell me, honestly, isn't it your nap time?

LOLOLOLOLOL!!!1!!one!!1

I bet you get all the chicks with those witty comebacks. Thanks for playing.

Reply Score: 1

Robert Escue Member since:
2005-07-08

And just where exactly are the "facts" in this article? At best I see Jem's piece as opinion and conjecture, not fact. He quotes a lot of figures such as "In most cases GNU/Linux will be substantially cheaper than Windows, especially in the long run (due to Microsoft's licensing policies)." And this is based on what study conducted by what research organization?

And do you think Microsoft alone distorts the facts to get their point across? Think again, I sat in a room full of people while a RedHat employee tried to spread FUD about Solaris to what he thought was a room full of management types. Unfortunately for him, there were two experienced Solaris administrators (I was one of them) who had a few words to say about his presentation. This goes along with the same Linux marketing materials from IBM and HP. So does this mean you are going to stop using Linux because some of the major players do the same things as Microsoft, or are you just going to ignore it as you claim people who use Microsoft products do?

And honestly, is the comment "All of you, from Microsoft's directors down to their end users, are acting like children. Tell me, honestly, isn't it your nap time?" really necessary?

Reply Score: 1

Valour Member since:
2005-07-08

And just where exactly are the "facts" in this article? At best I see Jem's piece as opinion and conjecture, not fact. He quotes a lot of figures such as "In most cases GNU/Linux will be substantially cheaper than Windows, especially in the long run (due to Microsoft's licensing policies)." And this is based on what study conducted by what research organization?

The article is not presented as fact. The listed category is, according to the Web site, a commentary piece:

http://www.thejemreport.com/mambo/content/view/203/2/

Reply Score: 1

Robert Escue Member since:
2005-07-08

Read the post I was responding to.

Reply Score: 1

Robert Escue Member since:
2005-07-08

Since his article title is " Debunking common GNU/Linux myths", shouldn't there be some facts in the article to "debunk the myths"? What difference does it make that is is listed as a commentary, if Jem is going to comment on "a number of sponsored reports and other corporate propaganda published around the Web that smear the image of Linux and free software" he should be backing up his assertions with some facts (at least I would).

Reply Score: 1

Valour Member since:
2005-07-08

Since his article title is " Debunking common GNU/Linux myths", shouldn't there be some facts in the article to "debunk the myths"? What difference does it make that is is listed as a commentary, if Jem is going to comment on "a number of sponsored reports and other corporate propaganda published around the Web that smear the image of Linux and free software" he should be backing up his assertions with some facts (at least I would).

What -- more reports that skew more facts? More studies that people will just say are biased anyway? What are the facts exactly? Determining TCO is like asking someone how much an automobile costs -- you don't know until you know the specifics. And the article says that. Twice.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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This is hysterical. I don't think I even know where to be begin tearing this apart. Let's see...

1. Installing a font in FC4.

You just don't know how, plain and simple. It's a simple matter with either Gnome or KDE to install any TTF in the user space with the graphical utility provided with each.

2. Spyware

You go ahead and tell your users every day that they have to be careful what they click on while browsing the web. My experience tells me that they will at best be disappointed that their browsing experience will never be safe, not knowing what to avoid and what is safe. And they'll be even more afraid of their computers. Mac and Linux users simple don't have that handicap.

3. Directory structure

The directory structure has EVERYTHING to do with security; I never mentioned executing a file. If you can't lock down the directory with the binaries/executables in it, you'll have the nightmare situation that most Windows users suffer from today.

4. FUD

I have never said it's impossible to secure Windows. But it is a fruitless effort. Our LAN admnistrators where I work have been chasing their tails with GPO after GPO trying to rein in the madness. The only thing that's holding that crap at bay is a proxy server with a white list of permissible web sites. Pretty sad to have to resort to that, but hey, that's Windows for ya.

So let's not talk about masturbation, ok? The right tool for the job might be Windows if there's no other choice (vertical markets come to mind). But then again, there's always Citrix. Get your facts straight, friend, then we can debate the merits of what's out there.

Reply Score: 1

smashIt Member since:
2005-07-06

sorry to quote you on this:

Get your facts straight, friend, then we can debate the merits of what's out there.

but

If you can't lock down the directory with the binaries/executables in it, you'll have the nightmare situation that most Windows users suffer from today.
is plain wrong

it seems to me that you never got beyound the simplified file-permissions in windows.
the dark side is like this ;) : http://temp.funtech.org/permissions.PNG

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous Member since:
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No, the problem isn't file permissions or directory structure, its that Windows users often have administrator priveledges and uses these priveledges to execute code with or without the end user's permission. This code often is included as an attachment in an email or as an executable file downloaded from the internet or as the payload of a worm. The end results are the same. Your system files get replaced by trojans and viruses that give other users the impression your system is insecure because it keeps getting compromised.

Perhaps PBKAC is an acceptable explanation for you, but I prefer to believe the problem is not with all these dumb users who can't keep their proprietary systems secure, it lies with Microsoft for not doing what they know was necessary to secure the system before they released XP. By the time Vista is released, Vista might be secure, but XP, without a firewall, virus and spyware scanner, is not.

Don't complain on here how Linux should be less secure because its source code is open. The facts speak for themselves. Go check the facts if don't know them. Don't make us point out the obvious. At least provide a logical excuse for all the Windows worms if you want to argue its security. You can't blame security on the end users of a proprietary system. They, at the very least, need access to the source code to take security into their own hands. Seriously.

Reply Score: 1

elsewhere Member since:
2005-07-13

2. Spyware

You go ahead and tell your users every day that they have to be careful what they click on while browsing the web. My experience tells me that they will at best be disappointed that their browsing experience will never be safe, not knowing what to avoid and what is safe. And they'll be even more afraid of their computers. Mac and Linux users simple don't have that handicap.


This is the one that kills me from the MS camp. They call linux users geeks, talk about how complex it is to install and use, and then talk about how easy it is to secure Windows: Install one or more spyware blockers, an A/V app, a personal firewall, install HiJack This, disable ActiveX objects, disable unnecessary services, install an alternate browser, tweak permissions settings for C:Windows and the registry, and any number of other tweaks to the default settings. It's just THAT easy, see? It's so easy that it's hard to believe millions of Windows users around the world are zombified without even realizing it.

Microsoft's ease of use has come at a considerable cost to thing such as core security. Although the MS zealots are loathe to admit that, at least Microsoft did and worked on trying to fix many of these problems with Vista.

3. Directory structure

The directory structure has EVERYTHING to do with security; I never mentioned executing a file. If you can't lock down the directory with the binaries/executables in it, you'll have the nightmare situation that most Windows users suffer from today.


This one I've got to call you on though; other issues aside, NTFS allows some very granular lockdown capability including execution, right down to the file level, as well things like file encryption. NTFS is something I've personally felt that Microsoft did right and will give them credit for.

Although I prefer linux and don't use Windows much anymore, I never felt there was anything inherently wrong with NT/2K/XP. They were stable and secure and could stay that way if you knew what you were doing, which regrettably most average users don't and MS catered to them by dumbing things down; they basically broke these secure and stable OSes themselves with weak default settings and heavy tendency to plant their own applications with deep roots into the core for (ahem) competitive reasons. The sad part is that most users just don't care, as long as it stays easy to use. Witness many of the trolling/FUD posts in this thread...

Anyways, just my 2c.

Reply Score: 2

Anonymous Member since:
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I agree with you to a point. But the fact that in the Windows world (as in DOS and CP/M before it) binaries and libraries can live in the same directory is, IMO, just asking for trouble. I think the POSIX idea is better, where, apart from user data, binaries, libraries, configuration files, even help files are each in their own directory makes it much easier to assign privileges to each file type, making it more secure.

Reply Score: 0

twitter Member since:
2005-07-25

You just don't know how

Hysterical, yes. That's the feeling I get when I use that KDE "font installer" (font installer!! What an earth-shattering idea!) to "install" a .PCF or .TTF font and I get a message saying "Only fonts can be installed" Isn't that just hysterical? And it's the same in user (~/.fonts) or root mode. Hysterical!!

have to be careful what they click on

Yes, it's called "when you get that stupid dialog asking you if you want to install something say no". Better yet, install the ActiveX controls they need (Flash/Adobe/etc) and then just lock down IE. Hilarity ensues!

can't lock down the directory with the binaries/executables in it

ROFL, yes, that's impossible in Windows. You are a genius.

Get your facts straight, friend

Will do. Hysterical!

Reply Score: 0

Anonymous Member since:
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Well aren't you just a kick in the pants, smart-ass! Then YOU explain to me why it's so easy to compromise Windows security and have so many infestations of spyware that a whole subset of security software and hardward had to be created just to protect against it. And don't give me any claptrap about how if Linux or Mac OSX were as popular as Windows is now they'd be in the same boat.

The fact that Microsoft doesn't demand a separate administrator account on 2k/XP and seems content to let its hapless customers carry on as their own admins just shows how inane the situation on that platform is.

To me, it matters very little that there are solutions to virus and spyware epidemics. That they happened to begin with speaks volumes about how 'secure' Windows is.

Have fun in your little bubble.

Reply Score: 1

twitter Member since:
2005-07-25

All my computers are (and have always been) fine. No "infestations" or anything like that. If that means I'm a "smart-ass" then that's great.

Have a great (and hysterical!) life. Good luck in getting rid of your Linsux security blanket.

Reply Score: 1

7. Free software is Communism
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:28 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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First let's examine free software. Basically it is software that you are allowed to use, sell, distribute and modify in any way you see fit.

Really?

I guess anything licensed by GPL is not free then?

Reply Score: 1

v Modded down?
by Anonymous on Mon 19th Dec 2005 20:57 UTC
RE: Modded down?
by CodeMonkey on Mon 19th Dec 2005 22:08 UTC in reply to "Modded down?"
CodeMonkey Member since:
2005-09-22

It was off-topic. And BTW, most of your developing nations use primarily dial-up (in the areas that get any service at all). This also happens to be a huge market that the Linux community is trying to anchor themselves in.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Modded down?
by Anonymous on Tue 20th Dec 2005 00:02 UTC in reply to "RE: Modded down?"
Anonymous Member since:
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I made that comment in this context: about the only place this debate between Linux vs. Windows takes place in such a heated manner is the US. It seems (anecdotally, anyway) that Microsoft has its hooks in the deepest here in the States. That's not to say that no one else cares about Microsoft's dubious business practices. But we in the US seem to have the most difficult time getting an Intel-based (non Apple) computer without Windows preinstalled. Also, in this country, a great many people seem to have broadband Internet access, perhaps more than anywhere else in the world. Again, this is all anecdotal, and I have no evidence to support my supposition. It also seems that a lot of emphasis and assumption, between software updates for all platforms and online music and video services, is being placed on broadband connectivity. It was with all that in mind that I made that comment.

Having said that, I don't know where you get the idea that the Linux community is trying to anchor itself specifically in the dial-up market. Just the act alone of downloading an ISO to try out any distibution precludes a dial-up Internet connection. So if we're going to talk about Linux, vs. Windows, we must also take for granted that the modern use of a computer almost requires broadband access. I really think you modded me down without thinking.

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: Modded down?
by CodeMonkey on Wed 21st Dec 2005 17:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Modded down?"
CodeMonkey Member since:
2005-09-22

I didn't mod you down actually. I was merely responding to why someone else may have. I personally felt it was fine, but I could see where someone else may have felt otherwise.

As far as Linux anchoring itself in the dial-up markt, that's not quite what I meant. I meant that the Linux community is trying to anchor themselves in developing nations which are just beginning to care about IT on a government level.

From my brief and not so thorough research the only numbers I could find were from 2003 but they are rather significant indeed:
Broadband users: 38,957,000
Narrowband users: 69,647,000
One may safely assume that by 2005 the ration has shifted from 4:7 closer to 1:1. (just a guestamate)

And that's just for the US. I know developing nations will have a much lower percentage of broadband users.

P.S. The edit was simply to fix some typos

Edited 2005-12-21 17:17

Reply Score: 1

CEOs
by mlb2000 on Mon 19th Dec 2005 21:21 UTC
mlb2000
Member since:
2005-09-07

Would piss themselves reading this garbage.

As usual with any Linux/OSS advocacy, it is geared towards the end user experience and ignores the base infrastructure and services that corporations have accrued over the years AND RUN THEIR BUSINESS ON.

Nuke and pave is not an option for a corporation. Converts MOST office documents is not an option. Runs MOST (older) versions of MS office is not an option.

Not taking up Linux is not inertia, pig headedness, blinkered thinking, or anything else that can be construed as being the fault of corporate decision makers. It is the fault of Linux, for bringing us the interfaces and compatability issues of the 1980s 20 years too late.

Reply Score: 1

RE: CEOs
by poofyhairguy on Tue 20th Dec 2005 01:55 UTC in reply to "CEOs"
poofyhairguy Member since:
2005-07-14


Not taking up Linux is not inertia, pig headedness, blinkered thinking, or anything else that can be construed as being the fault of corporate decision makers. It is the fault of Linux, for bringing us the interfaces and compatability issues of the 1980s 20 years too late.


So its Linux's fault it can't run programs designed for MS's Windows?

Reply Score: 1

Not what I expected
by Jon Dough on Mon 19th Dec 2005 21:46 UTC
Jon Dough
Member since:
2005-11-30

I was expecting a troll, but got a good article instead. Well done!

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: "So stop spreading FUD."
by smileaf on Mon 19th Dec 2005 23:00 UTC
smileaf
Member since:
2005-08-16

He's saying look at someone else, I didn't do it. (kinda sounds like a child and a broken window)

It doesn't matter WHO started it, everyone is contributing to this. The question is, who is going to stop it?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Re
by smileaf on Mon 19th Dec 2005 23:13 UTC
smileaf
Member since:
2005-08-16

Actually there is a new feature where you can do a "reboot" to load a new kernel which is currently in an experimental stage.

Here is the help on it directly from my kernel (yes that typo of independent is real)

"kexec is a system call that implements the ability to shutdown your current kernel, and to start another kernel. It is like a reboot but it is indepedent of the system firmware. And like a reboot you can start any kernel with it, not just Linux.
The name comes from the similiarity to the exec
system call."

Edited 2005-12-19 23:31

Reply Score: 1

A touch too Panglossian
by moleskine on Mon 19th Dec 2005 23:41 UTC
moleskine
Member since:
2005-11-05

It's a well-written and carefully thought piece but the question is, Does it fit with my own experience? Alas, no it does not.

The article makes the mistake of treating Linux and Windows as functionally equivalent. They are not. Fed up with Windows security holes? Find Windows price-gouging too much? Switch to Linux and your problems will be solved! That's the sales pitch in far too many Linux articles. In reality, in most cases the problems will have only just begun. Modems don't work (they are winmodems), networking is patchy (no one can figure out Samba or nfs), wifi is down (those Broadcomm chipsets!), fantastically complicated MS Office docs won't open properly or at all. Evolution is very slow and crashes frequently whereas Outlook never did. Multiply that by a score of two of desktops and you have a nightmare on your hands.

In my experience, Linux really only works in two situations. First, you are installing it because you want to and not as a negative reaction to Wiindows, you expect a few hiccups, and you are prepared to work through the problems and learn how to fix them. Or second, you have made a careful and well-informed analysis and concluded that Linux is the best tool for the job in hand. This is likely to be server-side Linux or a tightly controlled and limited corporate desktop. As for other circumstances, good luck ...

So, very good article but a little heavy on the Shanghri-La.

Reply Score: 3

RE: A touch too Panglossian
by elsewhere on Tue 20th Dec 2005 01:47 UTC in reply to "A touch too Panglossian"
elsewhere Member since:
2005-07-13

In my experience, Linux really only works in two situations. First, you are installing it because you want to and not as a negative reaction to Wiindows, you expect a few hiccups, and you are prepared to work through the problems and learn how to fix them. Or second, you have made a careful and well-informed analysis and concluded that Linux is the best tool for the job in hand. This is likely to be server-side Linux or a tightly controlled and limited corporate desktop. As for other circumstances, good luck ...

Well said.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous
Member since:
---

What an idiotic assessment of capitalism/communism/facism.

"A "gift economy" is one in which status is given by how much one gives to their community (as opposed to an "exchange economy" where status is given to those who have the most stuff)"

LO fricking L.

Where does he think all that 'stuff' comes from? From selling products and services to the 'community'. Which means that we use money as little votes to reward those who supply us with computers, heat, houses and idiotic articles like this one.

Capitalism is freedom. Plain and simple. If you don't like it at least be honest what it is you are arguing against.

PS. If Microsoft is a monopoly, why do they need any marketing?

-Ash

Reply Score: 0

diskinetic Member since:
2005-12-09

"PS. If Microsoft is a monopoly, why do they need any marketing?"

The accusations to date have been that they are monopolistic in ambition, but unfortunately for them, they aren't the monopoly in practice that they envision in their minds. The possibility exists that if they don't keep shoring the levee, they would no longer enjoy the minesweeping power a near-monopoly on the desktop has afforded them. So, they aggressively market with a nigh-infinite budget afforded them by force-feeding the general market a somewhat over-valued product. Why? To ensure that they'll always have enough money to do it again. It gets rather surreal at this juncture. They don't just believe that they should be able to produce a quality product and have it bought, they honestly believe they are entitled to unending revenue stream despite whatever superior (or merely equivalent) product may arise. They remind me of Caspar in "Miller's Crossing". They argue 'ethics', because they have the fix in, and who would dare sell out that fix to gain a profit? How unethical! "If you can't trust a fix, what can you trust? If you can't trust a fix, then your left with anarchy, chaos. You're right back in the jungle with the animals." Microsoft is merely being sensible inside a framework. When you have a great tool for competing with your peers (aforementioned scads of money to "fix" the fight and a lock on the desktop), why revert to the chaotic and questionable ground of having to earn the trust and money of clients on a day-to-day basis by designing and maintaining ever-more-complicated software?
Then you have the Linux people (whoever the deuce that may be). They're not making a lot of money off this stuff. Of course, Microsoft defines what "a lot" is in that previous sentence. It's not like Microsoft is yanking food from children. They don't keep other software companies from forming. But let those companies find a way to a dollar/euro/yen that MS hasn't locked down, or try to divert the existing revenue stream in some fashion, and out come the guns of all sizes and shapes. As to Caspar, it's perfectly sensible to Microsoft, as long as you assume that one entity possesses some intrinsic right to ever-increasing profitability.

Reply Score: 1

Anonymous
Member since:
---

I know from a real example, were a new developer got fired because of proposing tu use a microsoft windows server.
The proposal was converting data from website in xml, sending to xml server converting to other format (do not remember it exactly) to databaseserver and reading the data all the way back and this realized with windows servers ... and this in a core 20 man firm (not taking calling center in account and so on).
The best of all, the executed program would have been Visual Basic. ARRGH!

Well, arguments against:
- huge performance costs
- huge devices costs (because several servers on different hardware)
- huge licenses costs
- high failure rate realizing this system / unnecessary complexity
arguments for:
- no one known, at least conversion makes no sense, as the data in states in between wont be used for any other tasks

No wonder he had got fired. :-)

Reply Score: 0

nice
by Anonymous on Tue 20th Dec 2005 09:50 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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nice article. I give that person credit for trying to clear up some myths about Linux it was a nice read, but in the real world Microsoft is still making money and dominated the desktop market and creating other markets to dominate. Don't want to sound rude but articles like this do very little.

Reply Score: 0

nice
by Anonymous on Tue 20th Dec 2005 09:50 UTC
Anonymous
Member since:
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nice article. I give that person credit for trying to clear up some myths about Linux it was a nice read, but in the real world Microsoft is still making money and dominated the desktop market and creating other markets to dominate. Don't want to sound rude but articles like this do very little.

Reply Score: 0

RE: Re
by m_abs on Tue 20th Dec 2005 16:32 UTC
m_abs
Member since:
2005-07-06

"Very intelligent. Didnt anybody tell you that the monolitic Linux kernel is a piece of software that gets bulk-loaded on startup of your machine and that you in fact need a reboot to take benefit of the new kernel, he ?"
In fact you don't need too reboot then changing the linux kernel... you just need "kexec system calls" enabled in your current kernel, then you can replace your running kernel with a new one.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Re
by Anonymous on Wed 21st Dec 2005 08:13 UTC in reply to "RE: Re"
Anonymous Member since:
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But that's just a software reboot. System must be shut down and brought up again, because the new kernel will not reuse data structures of the old one.

Reply Score: 0

socialism, capitalism and communism
by Vorlath on Tue 20th Dec 2005 23:01 UTC
Vorlath
Member since:
2005-12-03

I thought these -isms would be what would cause the most debate. Silly me. Free Software is socialist and so it should be. It's not about everyone being equal, but about everyone being able to help out and being able to use it to suit their needs. However, the author goes on to say that socialism doesn't work or something like that. Half the article was on this, so obviously the author was more interested in disproving socialism than anything else in the article.

Reply Score: 1