Linked by Nathan J. Hill on Tue 24th Oct 2006 10:43 UTC
Linspire In the midst of the busy semester here at school, my fiancee's laptop, running Windows XP SP2, picked up some friends - adware, trojans, etc. It was a pretty nasty sight. I worked on it for at least two hours every couple of days, wiping it clean, doing my best to lock it down, and so on. Avast! and Ad-Aware had their limits it seemed, for only a day or so after I cleaned it, pop-ups and weird stuff would show up again. She was getting sick of it. I was getting sick of cleaning it, so I suggested, offhand, installing a different operating system that is a bit more impervious to those nasties. To my surprise, she agreed.
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Why not a Korean/Asian based distro?
by korpenkraxar on Tue 24th Oct 2006 11:40 UTC
korpenkraxar
Member since:
2005-09-10

My own experience with korean-friendly distros are admittedly very limited, but I share your frustration to some extent; sometimes getting just a Swedish keyboard to work correctly in Linux can be a pain (yes xorg bugs I am looking at you!). I assume a "local" korean or asian distro would provide among the best localization support. So did you try or has anyone else here tried Haansoft Linux? http://www.haansoftlinux.com/

It seems to be a commercial distro, but it also seems that the reviewer is not afraid to spend some money on a commercial OS solution anyways. Could perhaps have saved him the cost of new hardware, I dunno.

Edited 2006-10-24 11:40

Reply Score: 2

Redeeman Member since:
2006-03-23

and which bugs exactly are you talking about?

Reply Score: 1

korpenkraxar Member since:
2005-09-10

and which bugs exactly are you talking about?

There have been some reoccuring bugs in the swedish XkbLayout layout, in Debian at least. I have had to switch to Finnish on a number of occasions. This thread here is a typical example (though I am not involved): http://forum.slackware.se/viewtopic.php?t=2186&start=30&postdays=0&...

I even remember seing posts by Torvalds about problematic swedish/finnish keyboard layouts somewhere :-)

It's not just X11, but the console can be tricky as well. And I never learn when to use "se", "sv", "SE", "SV" or "sv_SE" in different config files... should it be se-latin6 or sv-latin1? :p

Reply Score: 1

dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

It's a problem with the danish XkbLayout as well. And in the console, too. I guess Š°ń÷ň are tricky ;)

Reply Score: 1

Redeeman Member since:
2006-03-23

allow me to be so bold as to say, then you do not know how to configure it correctly. i can only say, in slackware both danish and swedish works, as does it in gentoo, and arch. furthermore it also works in ubuntu

Reply Score: 1

dylansmrjones Member since:
2005-10-02

I know it usually works with gentoo (well not on the install-cd), but not all the time. It tends to break during major updates. The switch from 6.8 to 7.0 broke quite a few thing.

And the install-cd doesn't cannot do danish characters right (in the console (same problem on fedora)).

Reply Score: 1

twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

Does switching to a Finnish keyboard produce really long words? ;-)

Reply Score: 2

Maybe...
by Anonymous Penguin on Tue 24th Oct 2006 11:43 UTC
Anonymous Penguin
Member since:
2005-07-06

"Finally giving up, we went to the local AppleStore and got her a MacBook. Since then, she's put up her first webpage, organized her photos, and caught back up on her work. So, maybe there is a happy ending here after all."

Maybe that is what he wanted from the beginning?

Well done, anyway.

Edited 2006-10-24 11:45

Reply Score: 2

Fedora Core 6
by momendo on Tue 24th Oct 2006 11:51 UTC
momendo
Member since:
2006-10-24

In my experience, Fedora Core 5 supports Korean language as well as Japanese and many others. They switched input methods around and I remember it being a somewhat hard installing the IME in FC5. However in FC6, it should be even easier since they made the IME more discoverable. I write Japanese in Fedora and it is quite pleasant. You can even select the language at boot time to Korean, Japanese, etc. I think in Fedora, CJK is really a solved problem yet a free alternative.

Reply Score: 3

About beeing too far from Windows
by ulhume on Tue 24th Oct 2006 12:01 UTC
ulhume
Member since:
2006-10-24

First, I never tried Lispire. I must confess that I don't have a good feeling about it, but Distros are like religions, I never question about them.

You wrote "I didn't want to stray too far away from basic Windows-like capabilitie". The problem is linux is not windows in any way. I have the same respect for windows than with any linux distro (same religion point ;-). Ok, you have icons, keyboard and mouse on the screen, but that's quite all.

My fiancee also switched to linux, 2 years ago, and she's not a technical-computing person at all. But she switched cleanly the day I understood that I have to explain all the differences. When I gave up with my fear of "linux too complex for her, let's be simple". Linux is not that complex, and Windows is not that simple, from a new player point of view.

So I explained her everything from scratch. What is Linux way of installing a software, seeking information, storing documents, etc.. And from this day, she was not any more a "Windows person trying to figure out what was going one" but a "Linux user, following step by step her lurning curve in a NEW system".

The problem about "Linux Desktop" is that everyone really want it to be a "smooth move". But what is the point of moving from one system to another if you don't think it is a better one for your use ? And what is the point of using a better system if you don't learn first how different it is. Perhaps Linux is not a better system for her, perhaps MacOS is the right choice. I really don't know and I'm not judging. But one thing I know for sure. This "fashion" to turn a Linux into a windows to "help" user, is just not helping at all ! It's not helping Linux itself and definitely not helping users.

PS: About korean input method, I didn't try but it was quite easy to add vietnameese input to her laptop. It was just fonts, a package for input driver. And about Wireless network did you try ndis-wrapper, a good solution to use Windows drivers in Linux with same level of capabilities.

Edited 2006-10-24 12:13

Reply Score: 5

intangible Member since:
2005-07-06

There needs to be a rating higher than 5 for your comment.

I also wonder why the author wanted to make Linux as Windows-like as possible for his fiance but didn't mind changing the interface completely for her with OS X... It seems a bit like a double-standard to me.

Reply Score: 5

aquila_deus Member since:
2005-10-02

CJK text need special input systems, not just font or keyboard driver.

EDIT: none of CJK input systems I know directly supports KDE, maybe that is the problem.

Edited 2006-10-25 08:00

Reply Score: 1

Darkelve
Member since:
2006-02-06

- Try to throw a brand-new distro onto a random laptop
- add in a user with little to no knowledge of Linux
- and who didn't do any research.

With these together, you've got a recipe for disaster indeed. In the worst case, he might have formatted over the partition with his wife's data. As I'm sure many people trying out Linux *have* (yours truly nearly fared the same once. That was 6 years ago though).

They'll learn that Macs aren't perfect either. But maybe they are perfect for her/them.

Congrats on having the guts to try out something different at least!

Edited 2006-10-24 12:07

Reply Score: 5

root?
by jessta on Tue 24th Oct 2006 12:42 UTC
jessta
Member since:
2005-08-17

Does freespire have the same 'everyone is root' issue as Linspire has?
It's going to be awesomely funny when someone decides to take advantage of that.

Reply Score: 0

RE: root?
by Mage66 on Tue 24th Oct 2006 15:40 UTC in reply to "root?"
Mage66 Member since:
2005-07-11

>> Does freespire have the same 'everyone is root' issue as Linspire has? <<

No. Because Linspire doesn't have that problem either...

Where have you been for the past several years?

Reply Score: 3

RE: root?
by egon_spengler on Tue 24th Oct 2006 16:28 UTC in reply to "root?"
egon_spengler Member since:
2005-11-20

Well, Lindows hasn't had that problem since early on. The problem was default to root, when no other action was taken by the installer. The newest installer on their latest release (the WonderWeapon V2) does have quite a bit of verbiage about normal users. Freespire uses an almost-Ubuntu approach where the first user created is made a member of admin and admin is in the sudoers file without a password, so sudo "command" works without requiring password. However, many of the Lindows folks still run as root even with the options available. By the way, this is slightly off-topic.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: root?
by jessta on Sat 28th Oct 2006 08:51 UTC in reply to "RE: root?"
jessta Member since:
2005-08-17

"where the first user created is made a member of admin and admin is in the sudoers file without a password,"

So pretty much being root.

Reply Score: 1

RE: root?
by DrillSgt on Tue 24th Oct 2006 18:11 UTC in reply to "root?"
DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

"Does freespire have the same 'everyone is root' issue as Linspire has?
It's going to be awesomely funny when someone decides to take advantage of that."


Actually that was corrected a long time ago now. Not everyone 'runs as root' in Linspire or Freespire. That problem did exist many moons ago, and has been corrected for well over a year, maybe even 2.

Reply Score: 1

Author here.
by NathanHill on Tue 24th Oct 2006 12:42 UTC
NathanHill
Member since:
2006-10-06

I'd love to answer specific questions and have some feedback with everyone.

I should say, just to give a little more background, I am a longtime Linux user. I am currently running XUbuntu on my ol' Powerbook G3 Pismo. I love it. Good OS. I also run Damn Small Linux in Virtual PC on my Powerbook G4 for fun and curiosity.

I did get SCIM running in Ubuntu, which is the second OS we tried once I gave up on FreeSpire. I remember, after getting the stuff, I still had to add some definitions in the session files by hand to get it working properly... and then, it would not work in OpenOffice anyway, so the point was lost. My fiancee was able to use Ubuntu for a while though to send emails and do some basic things, and she digged it. I really don't think there are many basic functionality differences in Ubuntu or Windows or Mac OS.

The challenge, I think, is for one of these distros to really solidify what is core functionality, and I think input managers are core. It just works on Mac OS X and Windows - no need to install other software. That's a big plus in my book.

And the biggest reason I chose FreeSpire was because, at least I thought anyway, it was intended to be a more user-friendly Linux, a Linux that didn't need to have a lot of configuration just to work. This little project was over the course of the weekend, and there were assignments due. So, the longer configuration and setup took, the more frustrated my fiancee would get. I was working on a deadline. ;)

Peace,
Nathan

Reply Score: 4

RE: Author here.
by twenex on Tue 24th Oct 2006 15:01 UTC in reply to "Author here."
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

Whether they should be easier to install is a different question, but although I think all OSes should be available to as many people in their native language(s) as possible, I really can't see the point of installing support for Finnish, Russian, Georgian, Armenian, Korean, Chinese, Vietnamese, and so on ad infinitum on the desktops of the 95% of British, American, Western European, and South American users who just aren't going to have much use for them, by default.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Author here.
by AdamW on Tue 24th Oct 2006 20:07 UTC in reply to "Author here."
AdamW Member since:
2005-07-06

I can't speak for any other distro, but if you install Mandriva and pick a language that needs a specialized input method as the primary language (including Korean), the appropriate input method will be installed and configured automatically. It does a disservice to other distributions to observe that a problem exists in two distributions and then conclude that the problem is 'Linux-wide'. Your sample set isn't big enough.

Reply Score: 1

CJK Languages in Linux
by madcrow on Tue 24th Oct 2006 13:23 UTC
madcrow
Member since:
2006-03-13

Frankly the best English-language distro with support for Asian (and other non-latin) languages is SuSE. You just install language packs from the CDs/DVD and they work, just like in WinXP or OSX. I was able to get Japanese support complete with the needed English alphabet->Japanese script IME stuff installed in under a minute. As similar options are offered for Chinese and Korean, I would assume that they work just as well.

Reply Score: 5

banal
by k.g.stoyanov on Tue 24th Oct 2006 13:23 UTC
k.g.stoyanov
Member since:
2005-07-12

"use this, do not use this" - its banal. But I have to say:
after trying MOST of known linux distributions for last 3 years, and removing them after few days, from Dec.2005 on my HDD is PCLinuxOS, and I dont care about another distro, it is solid, flexible, customizable, compatible, perfect! and it WORKS.

Reply Score: 2

RE: banal
by renox on Tue 24th Oct 2006 14:47 UTC in reply to "banal"
renox Member since:
2005-07-06

Even with Korean support?

That was the major problem of the article.

Reply Score: 1

RE: banal
by bolomkxxviii on Tue 24th Oct 2006 15:31 UTC in reply to "banal"
bolomkxxviii Member since:
2006-05-19

I like PCLinuxOS too, but as for the "it WORKS" statement, try installing additional software (even if it is just from their own repository). You will quickly run into dependancy conflicts. I should know, I have been using it for 2 years on a daily basis.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: banal
by historyb on Tue 24th Oct 2006 19:39 UTC in reply to "RE: banal"
historyb Member since:
2005-07-06

I can say I have never run into deps issues and I've been using it for just as long. Heck I'm even a oem pclinuxos seller and I wouldn't sell something that didn't work.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: banal
by wakeupneo on Wed 25th Oct 2006 04:13 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: banal"
wakeupneo Member since:
2005-07-06

Same here. I'm yet to have a dependency issue. There must be something else going on with his system. I'm not sure about the Korean support but this review touches on it:

http://www.linuxgangster.org/modules.php?name=Content&file=viewarti...

screenshot: http://linuxgangster.org/images/content/snapshot17.png

Reply Score: 1

nabi ? imhangul ?
by l3v1 on Tue 24th Oct 2006 14:11 UTC
l3v1
Member since:
2005-07-06
Article is hilarious
by twenex on Tue 24th Oct 2006 14:31 UTC
twenex
Member since:
2006-04-21

What are the chances that after trying a Linux distro, a Windows user would just go and "slap in a Mac"? I can't speak for the States, but over here I can get a name-brand PC laptop with a 15.4" screen for ú700 (about $1400); the cheapest Mac with a 15.4" screen is about twice the price. Actually, no, the Mac price is from this month - the PC price was from last year. So a Windows user who completely fails to install Linux is most likely just to go back to Windows, warts and all.

So maybe the distro was at fault. Because the kernel can so extensively modified, "Linux hardware support" actually turns out to be widely variable among distros.

Or maybe the user was at fault. Supposedly "korean language support" is a "Linux-wide problem," but that's looking at Linux from a Windows user's perspective. If you look at Windows from a Linux user's perspective, application and driver installation (to say nothing of stability, flexibility, or security) are "a Windows-wide problem", (in the sense that they haven't been corrected to Linux users' satisfaction in the 16 years Linux and Windows have both been around).

EDIT: Fixed a mistake.

Edited 2006-10-24 14:42

Reply Score: 2

RE: Article is hilarious
by StephenBeDoper on Tue 24th Oct 2006 17:46 UTC in reply to "Article is hilarious"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Or maybe the user was at fault.

I don't think that blaming the user is a really valid position to take. In this case, the user went much further in his attempts to get it to work than the typical computer user would - most people would have given up when it didn't work automatically.

And in the general case, I think that position is - for one - rather disrespectfully-dismissive of valid problems that users experience. For another, it rests on some absolutist pre-suppositions. The main one being the pre-supposition that, if someone has difficulty using their computer, then it's due to some fault on their part. And more specifically I've commonly seen it implied that, if someone has difficulty using Linux, it's because of ignorance/unwillingness to learn on their part. Almost invariably those opinions come from people who are either computer professionals or computer hobbyists, or otherwise in possession of some specialized computer-related expertise.

Nothing wrong with that, of course - suspending humility, I probably fall into that category myself. But I also had the benefit of spending about four years teaching basic computing to adults who were absolute computer novices. One of the things that forced me to realize was that there is a lot of knowledge that "geeks" possess because of their interest in/passion for technology - and that much of that knowledge is far from intuitive for non-geeks. Having a solid grasp of how computers work gives us an inherent advantage, and not everyone is willing to become a computer expert in order to simply use a computer - nor should they be required to. If that were the case, then an English professor would be perfectly justified in arguing that only those with perfect grammar/sentence structure should be allowed to use written communication.

I'm certainly not trying to affect enlightenment/supriority here - before thatáinstructing job, I held a stereotypically-low opinion of those who knew less than I about computers. And not that this is limited to computer geeks by any means either, we don't tend to be very good at being understanding/patient with those who have difficulty with things we find easy - try to genuinely empathize with a functionally-illiterate adult, for example.

And yes, there is a tendency for non-technical people to experience a "suspension of common sense" when they come into contact with technology. But after spending hours and hours with people who were educated, intelligent, and successful (by any contemporary measure) - yet had trouble with computing tasks that most of us probably consider trivial - I don't think it's valid to dismiss all user difficulties with computers by saying "Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair."

Supposedly "korean language support" is a "Linux-wide problem," but that's looking at Linux from a Windows user's perspective. If you look at Windows from a Linux user's perspective, application and driver installation (to say nothing of stability, flexibility, or security) are "a Windows-wide problem", (in the sense that they haven't been corrected to Linux users' satisfaction in the 16 years Linux and Windows have both been around).

As someone who has to support Windows machines regularly, I entirely agree with you about driver installation being a pain. It has become much better with 2k/XP (at least Windows no longer asks for files that are already installed when you make network settings changes, as it did in 9x), but it can still be pretty onerous for non-geeks.

I don't see what it has to do with the language/input method support, though. The two problems aren't really comparable either - most typical Windows users (that I've encountered, at least) don't install new hardware that frequently, so - while driver installation can be an annoyance, most users won't run into related issues that often. Being unable to use one's native language and associated input method is much more fundamental problem, in my opinion, and is likely to directly effect more users.

For the record, I don't mean to bash Linux: I spend much of my time managing two Linux servers, an OS X/Webstar server, and Windows-based virtual-hosting, so I'm pretty OS-neutral at this point. And there are many things that I do like about Linux - working with the Windows servers, I regularly curse the lack of built-in remote shell, support for .htacces options, all the useful things that can be done with symlinks, etc. I think that "right tool for the right job" is the most sensible philosophy - but I also think that we ought to be realistic about when something is the right tool and when it isn't.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Article is hilarious
by twenex on Wed 25th Oct 2006 00:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Article is hilarious"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

I posted a long reply to this which OSnews stuffed up due to post-length limitations. I'll try to recreate it in the morning.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Article is hilarious
by twenex on Wed 25th Oct 2006 15:53 UTC in reply to "RE: Article is hilarious"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

OK, as I said I posted a long response which got lost in OSnews 800-word restrictions. I can't really be bothered to type it all again, but I'll try to cover the main points.

Or maybe the user was at fault.

In this case, the user went much further in his attempts to get it to work than the typical computer user would - most people would have given up when it didn't work automatically.


True enough. However, to me the article came over as an excuse to diss Linux and evangelize Macs - that's fine, but I prefer articles that work through a problem and come to a conclusion, rather than deciding on a conclusion and writing an article to fit.

And in the general case, I think that position is - for one - rather disrespectfully-dismissive of valid problems that users experience. For another, it rests on some absolutist pre-suppositions. The main one being the pre-supposition that, if someone has difficulty using their computer, then it's due to some fault on their part. And more specifically I've commonly seen it implied that, if someone has difficulty using Linux, it's because of ignorance/unwillingness to learn on their part.

Yep, and that's because if Linux were ubiquitous and Windows were the upstart, it would be as hard for Linux users to adjust to Windows as it is for the reverse. I know, I go for long periods without using Windows and then have trouble when I come back to it.

Almost invariably those opinions come from people who are either computer professionals or computer hobbyists, or otherwise in possession of some specialized computer-related expertise.

I don't really see how hobbyists can be "accused" of "specialized computer-related expertise". Many people just refuse to accept the fact that a computer is not a single-use tool like a knife or even a tv, and that is inevitably going to be more complicated. I don't think computers will ever be truly "easy to use" unless someone invents a way to talk to them like they do in Star Trek.

Nothing wrong with that, of course - suspending humility, I probably fall into that category myself. But I also had the benefit of spending about four years teaching basic computing to adults who were absolute computer novices. One of the things that forced me to realize was that there is a lot of knowledge that "geeks" possess because of their interest in/passion for technology - and that much of that knowledge is far from intuitive for non-geeks.

That may be true, but (as I see from later comments that we both agree), a lot of people throw common-sense out the window ritualistically before sitting down at a computer.


Having a solid grasp of how computers work gives us an inherent advantage, and not everyone is willing to become a computer expert in order to simply use a computer - nor should they be required to. If that were the case, then an English professor would be perfectly justified in arguing that only those with perfect grammar/sentence structure should be allowed to use written communication.


I don't expect people to be able to describe the innermost workings of a computer or OS to be able to use a computer - hell, even I don't understand much of that - but I do have a somewhat more strict interpretation of "the innermost workings of a computer or OS" than most people. I think it's pretty clear that although you don't need to be Shakespeare to communicate, unless you have a basic grasp of grammar, attempting to communicate anything much more complicated than "me go plop-plop" is going to be difficult. That isn't snobbishness, it's a (perhaps unfortunate) fact of life.

I also think it's unrealistic to expect computers to do all the adapting - people are, by nature, infinitely more intelligent and adaptable than computers. Fred Brooks (in The Mythical Man-Month)makes the point that whereas in 50's people would write custom bookkeeping applications to fit in with their company-specific accounting, nowadays people buy off-the-shelf accounting programs and adapt their internal bookkeeping to the software.

... I don't think it's valid to dismiss all user difficulties with computers by saying "Problem Exists Between Keyboard And Chair."

Nor do I; nevertheless, I think people should realise that if Linux were identical to Windows, people wouldn't use it. The only reason to use Linux is because, in the opinion of the user, it provides several advantages over any of the other OSes or even available Unix implementations. That doesn't mean that they are all the "Anything But Microsoft" crowd, but it does mean that there's no reason to run Linux if the only difference between it and Windows is the presence or lack of "Microsoft" on the box.

As someone who has to support Windows machines regularly, I entirely agree with you about driver installation being a pain. It has become much better with 2k/XP (at least Windows no longer asks for files that are already installed when you make network settings changes, as it did in 9x), but it can still be pretty onerous for non-geeks.

I don't see what it has to do with the language/input method support, though. The two problems aren't really comparable either - most typical Windows users (that I've encountered, at least) don't install new hardware that frequently, so - while driver installation can be an annoyance, most users won't run into related issues that often. Being unable to use one's native language and associated input method is much more fundamental problem, in my opinion, and is likely to directly effect more users.


The point was simply that although there are issues with Linux, there are issues with Windows, too - and I don't see the point of including by default zillions of different language packs "just in case" 1 in a million people needs to use an obscure one. But yes, they should be available and as easy to install as possible.

For the record, I don't mean to bash Linux: I spend much of my time managing two Linux servers, an OS X/Webstar server, and Windows-based virtual-hosting, so I'm pretty OS-neutral at this point. And there are many things that I do like about Linux - working with the Windows servers, I regularly curse the lack of built-in remote shell, support for .htacces options, all the useful things that can be done with symlinks, etc. I think that "right tool for the right job" is the most sensible philosophy - but I also think that we ought to be realistic about when something is the right tool and when it isn't.

Perhaps my use of computers is somewhat limited, but for me Windows just doesn't provide enough advantages to prefer it over Linux - that doesn't mean other people can't disagree; what it means is that there's no justification for being called a "fanboy" or a "moron" just because I don't use something that 95% of the world does. If I chose things purely on the basis of "greatest number of users", I'd be a Muslim. IMO I have plenty good reasons to have beef with MS and Win, but this post is getting rather long, so perhaps another time.

Reply Score: 1

Review: Freespire 1.0
by jdoyle on Tue 24th Oct 2006 15:17 UTC
jdoyle
Member since:
2006-09-04

"Second, Microsoft Office would not run. I was faced with having to reinstall it to get it to run with Wine."

Where did you get the idea that Freespire could run Windows apps natively? Compatibility with Microsoft file formats is not the same thing as compatibility with Windows applications.

Reply Score: 2

There is support, and there is support
by suslik on Tue 24th Oct 2006 15:26 UTC
suslik
Member since:
2005-07-27

I really can't see the point of installing support for Finnish, Russian, Georgian, Armenian, Korean, Chinese, Vietnamese, and so on ad infinitum on the desktops of the 95% of British, American, Western European, and South American users who just aren't going to have much use for them, by default.

I am rather surprized support for input and viewing of the said languages in NOT installed by default. I agree about localized strings and UI translations - they take a lot, but input methods are a must.

On a related note. On Keyboard installation step, Windows allows user to choose additional, "unnative" input locales. So, it's not by default either, but the same treatment I get from my OpenSuse installer.

There is a lot of difference in overall Linux experience depending on which Linux you choose. You don't pick up the first person on the street to be a spouse, you don't pick a distro without the research of your needs and their offers.

Reply Score: 2

Anyone remember?
by Ronald Vos on Tue 24th Oct 2006 15:49 UTC
Ronald Vos
Member since:
2005-07-06

Anyone remember Linspire offering the South Korean an attractive package deal for switching all their computers from Windows to Linspire, when SK had a scuffle with Microsoft?

Perhaps it was wise that they declined.

And for the people lambasting the author for 'not doing research', 'giving Linux to a noob' and 'trying to install it on a laptop': what gives?!?

Is Linux 'ready for the desktop' or not? Freespire has long claimed that it was ready, so how is it the author's fault for giving it a test-drive?
He even tried booting from live-cd first, what more do you want?
It's as if they're not going to be happy unless only happy successtories are posted.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Anyone remember?
by sbergman27 on Tue 24th Oct 2006 16:22 UTC in reply to "Anyone remember?"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""Is Linux 'ready for the desktop' or not? Freespire has long claimed that it was ready, so how is it the author's fault for giving it a test-drive?"""

Why didn't he just buy a copy of MacOS X and install it on the existing laptop? Because it wouldn't install at all? Is MacOS X ready for the desktop or not?

His final solution was to buy hardware designed for the OS running on it... as he could have done with Linspire/Freespire at *far* lower expense.

Edited 2006-10-24 16:24

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Anyone remember?
by egon_spengler on Tue 24th Oct 2006 16:34 UTC in reply to "RE: Anyone remember?"
egon_spengler Member since:
2005-11-20

Apple has always held close rein on the OS, as is generally known, and makes no pretension to be installable on anything OTHER than Apple hardware. However, Linux distros (other than perhaps a PPC distro) make no such claims, such as XYZ distro will ONLY install on a Toshiba Model Framistat12. Thus, it is by no means the fault of the author for failing to expect Freespire to work after the marketing, is it?

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Anyone remember?
by sbergman27 on Tue 24th Oct 2006 17:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Anyone remember?"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""However, Linux distros (other than perhaps a PPC distro) make no such claims, such as XYZ distro will ONLY install on a Toshiba Model Framistat12."""

Straw man.

Linspire/Freespire make no claims of supporting all hardware. There may be a few individuals who would try to argue otherwise, but while Linux has amazingly good hardware support in general, even in the absence of cooperation for some hardware makers, there are some weak areas. Wireless support is one of them. Do a google search for "Linux" and "Wireless" and you will see that the community discusses these problems quite openly.

He could have picked up a Linspire notebook with everything pre-installed and working perfectly for as little as $400-$500 rather than spending $1100 - $2800 on the Macbook. (That price range comes from Compusa.com.)

My original point stands.

Edited 2006-10-24 17:25

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Anyone remember?
by Barnabyh on Tue 24th Oct 2006 18:00 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Anyone remember?"
Barnabyh Member since:
2006-02-06

When I last looked Linspire had a hardware database on their website stating all hardware that is supported, with the rest you will obviously take your chances.
There's a *a lot* of material and discussion out there how to get wireless working, and trying something like the Debian mailing list, searching its or other newsgroups archives through Google groups would most definitely turn something up that will work. Forums are great too.
Well I guess the real issue was Korean language support and before plonking down $1,000 + I would rather have tried a few more international/bigger distros like Debian or Fedora where you can expect this sort of thing before giving up. But maybe I'm just tight. Particularly Debian is great with this and apt/synaptic configures everything automatically.
Heads up anyway for a nice try, but sometimes it's worth putting in a bit more time 'cos once it works it works (at least in linux).

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Anyone remember?
by computrius on Tue 24th Oct 2006 21:18 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Anyone remember?"
computrius Member since:
2006-03-26

Yes, there is a lot of information on how to get wireless working if you have a COMMON problem. Something like the author described, such as erratic connection status/strength, I almost guarantee you will find nothing of any use in any forum. Most of what you will find are threads that pose the question of this problem, with no reply.
One thing I have found in these situations is that most of the people in the Linux community that do know something about the problem feel that they are too elite to help a lowly "n00b". The ones that don't simply don't reply. The problems you get help for are the relatively common problems that have relatively easy solutions that don't require much thought or typing.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: Anyone remember?
by intangible on Tue 24th Oct 2006 21:53 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Anyone remember?"
intangible Member since:
2005-07-06

A different wireless adapter probably would've been cheaper than an iBook... I'm just sayin'...

Reply Score: 1

RE: Anyone remember?
by netpython on Tue 24th Oct 2006 16:54 UTC in reply to "Anyone remember?"
netpython Member since:
2005-07-06

Is Linux 'ready for the desktop' or not?

Of course it is.It was ready 10 years ago.The question is:"Whose Desktop?".

Reply Score: 4

Just the user Linux needs to win over.
by Gone fishing on Tue 24th Oct 2006 16:48 UTC
Gone fishing
Member since:
2006-02-22

The author looks like just the kind of PC user Linux needs to win over if it is to gain a significant proportion of desktop users. It's no use blaming the author for not having enough knowledge, skill etc., he had enough to attempt to partition the drive and install.

Obviously he wants the experience to be quite like Windows because that's what he and his girl friend are used to (although I'm sure he would have coped with Gnome). I suspect that Freespire wasn't a good choice, and am a little surprised that Ubuntu wasn't up to the task.

Slickness polish and just plain working as it should - is important. You cant expect the dissatisfied Windows user to be able to use a terminal and be comfortable configuring his new Linux box with a text editor.

Reply Score: 1

superstoned Member since:
2005-07-07

well, i think freespire is a nice thing, but it IS after all a year (at least) behind other linux distributions (see the kernel and KDE and OO.o and Firefox versions). most likely the 2.0 release will give him a way better experience...

Reply Score: 1

A Mac dummy tries to do Linux
by shapeshifter on Tue 24th Oct 2006 17:07 UTC
shapeshifter
Member since:
2006-09-19

Ok, too harsh on Nathan, I shouldn't be an ass myself.
I think he gave up too quickly and therefore this article is a bit of a troll imo.

Edited 2006-10-24 17:11

Reply Score: 2

IRMA
by feedbag on Tue 24th Oct 2006 12:26 UTC
feedbag
Member since:
2006-08-03

For what it's worth Linspire has a program that allows anyone who's native language is not represented by Linspire to help and translate the OS so there will be a native version.
I don't really know all of the details since I only know one language but, several folks who've tried Linspire and realized it isn't translated completely for them have gone about doing it themselves and at the same time have gained a pretty good knowledge of the workings of Linux.

Reply Score: 1

PC trouble + helpful boyfriend = new Mac
by cptnapalm on Tue 24th Oct 2006 17:57 UTC
cptnapalm
Member since:
2006-08-09

Who thinks that his girlfriend was aiming at getting a Mac out of him from the get go?

Reply Score: 1

NathanHill
Member since:
2006-10-06

Thanks for all the comments.

I will definitely look forwarding to trying out FreeSpire 2.0 when it becomes available. I think FreeSpire has a lot of potential. Ubuntu still remains my favorite - it's just super easy to use.

All of the suggestions for Korean input managers are gratefully received. I will also check out Mandrake to see if it does indeed integrate well. The problem we had in Ubuntu was that most of it worked great with SCIM, but OpenOffice would not work. So, again, sort of a roadblock, although I have just been told that I might be able to get it to work with some more modification. I am looking forward to trying that out. I know when I did look up this problem, I believe at least a few posts about OpenOffice indicated that this was a bug with the current version.

I am a Mac user, so I definitely bring my own set of assumptions to computing. I like out of the box functionality, workflows that enable creativity, and 'sexiness'. Things should just work (as much as possible). I like OS X for all those reasons, but that doesn't mean I still don't enjoy Windows and Linux for their strengths. I did not force my fiancee to get a Mac - she paid for it. She also set it up herself, with a little instruction from me here and there. But almost immediately, she had built a webpage, without my help. She is having fun with her Mac.

I wrote the article in an attempt to frame discussion somewhat differently about operating systems. My fiancee liked FreeSpire and Ubuntu, but she could not afford to spend time waiting for me to figure out the bugs, searching forums, updating packages, and so on. Her Averatec is a fine computer, though underpowered, so the MacBook caught her fancy and so far, she's loving her Mac experience.

Peace,
Nathan

Reply Score: 1

Testing it right now.
by snozzberry on Tue 24th Oct 2006 23:48 UTC
snozzberry
Member since:
2005-11-14

Nice:

As advertised, Flash/QuickTime/WMV/Java 1.5 support out of the box.

Add KDE printer automatically uses my IP as a base IP for scanning.

Underwhelming:

Web Browser: It's not kosher to rename FF 1.5.0.4. Even Ubuntu was on 1.5.0.7 this morning.
More annoying: word highlighting a la Microsoft's plan to highlight potentially useful commercial links. I suspect this commerciality is what's responsible for rebranding FF (even if it's sporting a largely Jon Hicks-inspired logo).

RealPlayer as default .MP3 player. I work in multimedia with Real media and even I wouldn't subject someone to this.

Icons failed to appear in LiveCD: failed on desktop (leaving their titles stacked), failed in FF's toolbar

Font selection: what, no MSTTcorefonts preinstalled?

Attempting to set up an LPR printer resulted in a crash with an unpleasant picture of a user's head crisped black.

Network Share Manager croaks on large shares.

---
More comments to come later. Overall, not innately superior to Kubuntu after running EasyUbuntu.

Reply Score: 1

v yeah yeah yeah
by Fuji257 on Wed 25th Oct 2006 03:35 UTC